Working out is great for your wellness, and you know that. However, there are times when you feel tired and just wanted to lie down and relax. Was there ever a time when you feel like quitting? Most people experience frustration after starting a fitness program due to unrealistic goals, not getting fast results, or busy schedules. So, what are the secrets to stay motivated to workout?
7 Secrets to Stay Motivated to Workout
Motivation is defined as “the state or condition of being motivated or having a strong reason to act or accomplish” (dictionary.com). It is an internal process that drives a person to change himself or his surroundings. Motivation plays an essential role in any fitness program.
Set your goals.
Set goals that are clear-cut, realistic, and attainable. Start with short-term goals and then move on to long-term goals. Too ambitious and unrealistic goals can easily frustrate you and make you quit.
Let’s say you’re a newbie to fitness training. Start by walking for 20 to 30 minutes and do it twice or thrice per week instead of working out for one hour each day. Or if you’ve missed working out for a few days, start with a short-term goal like a 10-minute walk each day, five days per week. Then set an intermediate goal of a 30-minute walk, five days per week. For your long-term goal, aim to finish a 5km walk.
Wear your exercise clothes.
Choose the clothes that make you comfortable and something that fits. Once you have put these on, you’ll find the motivation to exercise. If you are a beginner, it is a motivating factor to choose the appropriate clothes and gear to get you excited and riled up to pursue your fitness routine.
Make it exciting and enjoyable.
Pick a workout that keeps you interested and excited. If you’re not too keen on exercising, join aerobic or dance classes or join a sports club or participate in a sports league (volleyball, basketball). Martial arts or health clubs are good options. Finding an exercise that you enjoy will inspire and encourage you.
Make your fitness training a part of your regular activities.
Put your exercise routine in your calendar, the same way you do with other significant activities. Stop making excuses.
You can fit in a physical activity like walking during office breaks or taking the stairs instead of the escalator or elevator. Do stationary cycling or walk on a treadmill while watching TV.
If you have an 8-hour job that requires long sitting, try getting up on your breaks to walk or stretch. Long sitting hours is unhealthy.
Invite friends, coworkers, or family members.
Exercising alone can be tedious. Join workouts organized by your office. Get your friends, coworker, or family members involved. Form a group consisting of neighbors to participate in fitness, dance, or sports club in your community. Working out with someone encourages you to do better and to make progress as desired or expected.
Keep a record.
Keep a log of your goals to keep motivated. You can choose to track it online or have a fitness diary. Write down the exercise you did, the duration, how you felt after that. Keeping a record of your training and progress helps you to continue, stay motivated, and continue to work to reach your goals.
Don’t do the same routine frequently. Add variety by mixing up exercises. For example, biking instead of walking, or do sit-ups instead of planks. Diversity in your workout routine reduces if not, eliminate boredom.
After the exercise, relish the satisfaction you receive for a few minutes. The pleasurable feeling after a workout helps you stay motivated and committed.
Another way to cheer yourself on engaging a fitness program is to reward yourself a gift. For example, buy yourself new training clothes, a pair of training shoes, or download new songs to listen to while working out.
Eliminate any pangs of guilt or regret if you fail a day or two on your fitness routine. Accept and understand that there will be lapses. Take a break from your workout if you need it, as long as you continue with the routine. If you keep on thinking about the missteps, shame, and guilt, you will end up resigning or quitting on your workout. Get moving as soon as you get your interest back.
Stop comparing yourself
Focus on what you do and not somebody else’s. People have different levels of movement, and progress will not be the same. Some may be more flexible than you or may show faster results or vice-versa.
Your workout is all about you, so do not mind them. Comparing your progress will only stop you from achieving your fitness goal.
Mingle with positive people
Spending time alone allows you to dwell on negative thoughts and reduces your confidence. Dismiss undesirable comments. If you work out in a gym, interact with positive people to get good vibes. Constructive and affirmative ideas and thoughts from these people will keep you going even if you feel tired, distracted, demotivated, or wanting to quit. Being a part of a group with a happy and optimistic disposition can help each other to stay motivated and to attain their fitness goals.
Choose from any of the secrets to stay motivated to workout. Some may work for others, while some may not work for you. Bear in mind, though, your unique personality and fitness goals. Whether your motivational triggers are positive or negative, be gentle to yourself. Do not hurry, take small steps, or try different methods. There is one that suits you, and you will find the proper combination of extrinsic and intrinsic motivational factors to reach your workout goals.