Updated: Feb 28
Finding the motivation to get a workout in can sometimes be harder than finding a needle in a haystack. When other activities take our time such as work, family, friends, or an errand run that ended up only being a trip to Tim Hortons or Starbucks, two things happen. One, we use these as excuses to blow off our workout and two, we slowly lose motivation that is already lacking because lets face it, once we get back to our house and sit on the couch there is a slim chance we’re going to get up to go voluntarily sweat and push ourselves when we’d rather just push farther back into the couch and let it engulf us for the time being while we scroll through Netflix.
So how can we get in that mindset that welcomes the idea of a workout? First, you must enjoy what you’re doing! Do you go to the gym just to run on the treadmill and stare at a wall that hasn’t changed one bit since you joined? I hope not, because everyone should be doing some type of resistance training, but we’ll leave that discussion for another post. Stop boring yourself on the treadmill and do something as simple as jumping jacks, burpees, or run up and down the stairs instead. Time isn’t even a factor when you are able to continuously move and before you know it that 30 minutes that felt like an hour before on the treadmill is over. Better yet take a Studio 14 boxing class and then you will realize how short a half hour really is! Why does it seem so much shorter? It’s because you’re constantly moving keeping your mind focused on everything but how much time has gone by. The same goes for playing sports. Pick up a basketball and shoot around a little and you’ll be amazed how quickly time passes and how much fun you were able to have. Keeping it fun is the biggest key. Nobody wants to do something that bores them because it is way easier to find excuses when you don’t really want to do it in the first place.
Find someone to workout with. The accountability alone will help keep you motivated. Spouses, friends, and co-workers all make great workout partners and best part is this makes the workout more fun! Some of the most memorable relationships you will have will be with people you workout with. You share sweat, pain, joy, PR’s (personal records), and a common goal to be better than you were yesterday. You should take every chance you can to ensure that a workout isn’t done on your own because you’ll be less likely to slack off and in reality, humans strive off competition. Even if you say, “I’m not a competitive person” you already contradicted yourself because you are a person and we are all hard wired to be competitive, it stems from our need to survive.
For all my millennials out there, that are on their phones scrolling more miles than they are walking, put that phone to good use. Follow your favorite athletes, trainers, or fitness influencer on social media. You would be surprised how much seeing a post about fitness, in between all the memes, can alter your mind. Maybe it’s a guy or girl you think is hot or someone you look up to, it could be that kick that gets you off the couch to say I want to look like that or I want someone like that to notice me. Well then get in the gym and get to work! Sitting on your phone isn’t going to get you there. Also, all these influencers are going through the same struggles you are. We all have days we don’t want to workout simply because we don’t feel like it, but they can give you affirmation that everyone deals with it but look what happens when you set your mind to something and fight that feeling of not wanting to do it.
So, if you really want to stay motivated all the time you have to immerse yourself into it. Listen to motivational speeches instead of the same album for the 3rd time this week, find people who like to talk about working out and are educated, and follow those athletes and influencers on social media. Most importantly find what works for you and run with it! In the end you will have to rely on yourself for motivation, but you can certainly make it somewhat easier for that motivation to find you.