As the New Year dawned you may have felt totally inspired to get into your best ever shape and work out on a regular basis. You may have made grand claims, signed up for races and even purchased some new exercise gear! So here we are, a little way into January. Are you still going strong? Chances are your motivation is waning, even if you are still showing up on that treadmill each morning.
The following are suggestions on how to keep your eyes on the prize and feel motivated to work out each day that you intend to.
1. Define Your Reasons
The first step in sparking motivation is to look inside for your core inspiration.
Inspiration lasts much longer than motivation because it comes from within and is aligned with your true values and goals. Whatever your reason for wanting to exercise, define it and remind yourself of that every time that you need to. Maybe you want to look better, fit into an outfit, get ready for the beach! If vanity is your main inspiration that is perfectly fine!
Maybe your reasons are to enjoy that feel-good buzz that comes from exercise. Great health and a strong body could be your motivation. All fantastic reasons, just make sure you know yours. Then when you find yourself making excuses around why you don’t want to work out, you can easily remember why you do want to!
2. Steer Your Ship!
Consider yourself as a ship - with the Captain barking orders and the crew following instructions and doing the work to steer. If you get the captain on the right track then the crew will undoubtedly follow.
In practice this means feeding your mind and heart with stimuli that will result in desired actions. Whatever you can visualise you can manifest!
Give your brain visual inspiration with photographs and images - maybe even a whole vision board. Keep prompts in clear spots around the house, reminding you of all of the great things that come of working out!
Remind yourself of the fun, the feeling of winning and achieving, reaching goals. Once the Captain is sparked into action you can almost switch off your mind and go into workout autopilot!
3. Take The First Step
The hardest moment of a workout is the one that involves you getting off of the couch and into action! Concentrate on taking just one little step at a time. Start small, it is still a start! That is much more than many people achieve.
Begin with taking a walk, progressing to short runs. It gradually gets easier as your fitness improves. The saying is true, action can really inspire motivation. Focus on the first step and see where it takes you!
4. Have Fun
Workouts should not be a complete chore. Nor should they be excruciatingly painful. It is impossible to keep showing up to a workout that you absolutely dread, which leaves you hobbling around for days afterwards. Who could possibly maintain motivation for something like that?
Why not help yourself out by following a workout regime that you find enjoyable and dare I say easy for you! It can really be easy if you are doing something that you like. Time does fly when you are having fun, your exercise could be finished before you know it!
So focus on exercise that you like! Do you hate going to the gym? Then get outside! Join a dance class, or tai chi. Whatever it is that you like doing…..do that! Whatever time you like to exercise….do it then! Simple really! Your brain is the thing that needs to be convinced to work out, so do what you know it won’t fight against.
5. Remember The Post Workout Buzz
You may be focused on the happiness that is sure to be awaiting when you reach your fitness goals….. but what about the smaller intermediate milestones? Have you ever actually regretted working out?
Try to visualise the rush of endorphins that flood your system every time you work up a sweat!
Each step along the journey is something to be proud of. Tending to leave you feeling happier and healthier with every single exercise session.
6. Be Kind To Yourself
Constantly tell yourself that you are worth it until you know that it is true. You can do this, your goals are within your grasp. You absolutely deserve to be happy and healthy! Refuse to beat yourself up when you skip a session, instead focus on the positives and achievements that you have made.
It is vital to realise that there are ups and downs in all journeys. Sometimes you will be skipping off to the gym at every chance, and at others you will need to muster up some strong willpower to get off of the sofa. This is completely natural. You are a constantly evolving being. If your true drive is to become fit and healthy, trust that you will reach your goal even with a few deviations from the path.
Hopefully these tips will be useful for you! We would love to hear comments on how you motivate yourself currently that could help motivate others reading this post to take up exercise or to keep exercising.