Whether it’s a HIIT workout, yoga, running or going to the gym, the one thing we all need in order to maintain a consistent workout is motivation.
You know you need to work out, you know it will benefit your life tenfold if you can actually do it, and you know your health depends on it. But it’s hard to make time in our already busy lives and there are so may excuses to not do it.
So how do we get ourselves to work out and even more so, to make it a lifestyle? Let’s talk about a few tools you can use to find motivation and make it stick.
Pick a Workout You Enjoy
It doesn’t matter how trendy or exciting a particular workout seems. If you don’t enjoy it or look forward to it, the chances of you sticking with it are pretty slim. If you’re having a hard time with your current workout, try something new. And keep trying them until you find one that works for you. We tend to make time for the things we enjoy, so find something you look forward to and you’ll make the time for it.
Find a Workout Partner
Accountability is huge. It’s easier to rationalize a missed workout or procrastinate on the schedule if you’re the only one who knows about it. Find someone who enjoys the same workout as you and schedule time to do it together. Walking, running, yoga or going to the gym are all things you can do as a pair or even in a group. Having someone to workout with will keep you on track, encourage you when you need it, and push you just a bit further than you would otherwise go.
Choose the Best Time of Day
Not all of us can jump out of bed at 5am and go for a run. It’s just not in our DNA. If that’s you, don’t force yourself to do something you’ll be completely miserable with. It will never become a long term habit. Instead, find a time of day when your energy levels are high and your motivation will come more naturally. And hey, if that is 5am for you, go for it!
Set Small Goals
One of the biggest challenges to creating long term workout motivation is setting huge goals and not being able to achieve them quickly. Particularly when you’re starting out, set small goals and get a taste of success. Not only will it boost your confidence but it will do wonders for your motivation. If you want to lose 50 pounds, make your goal to lose 2 pounds per week. It’s easier to measure success and see improvement when you break down a large goal into smaller increments.
As you reach each goal, reward yourself. Taking time to celebrate your positive achievements will give you something to look forward to as you push toward the next goal. Just don’t sabotage your health journey by making pizza and cookies the reward (although everything in moderation is okay, right?). If you have a workout partner (or class or group) invite them to celebrate with you – go out to a movie or concert. Your hard work is worth celebrating!
Everyone is different, so it’s important to find things that work for you. Use these suggestions as a tool to create the motivation you need to stick with it. Keep trying new workouts until you find one you love and do it during a time that works best for your energy levels. Connect with someone you can work out with and make a commitment to hold each other accountable. Don’t forget to celebrate your small victories and use it as motivation to keep going. You’re worth it!