Get back your spark for exercise with our 27 Motivation Boosters
Sometimes even our most dedicated members, readers and staff struggle to find the motivation to exercise. Whether it is a change in one’s timetable, lifestyle, health, workload or just the colder weather, sometimes there’s just no spark for working out. The trick is to have a bunch of strategies ready to help you when you need it, rather than waiting ’til you’re three weeks into a no-exercise slump. Don’t risk losing all the fantastic achievements you’ve worked hard to gain!
Below I’ve included a list of ideas to get your fitness routine rocking again. No need to do them all, simply choose a few that appeal to you and put them in place NOW
Recruit a friend or two
Having a training buddy can help you stay committed while making workouts more fun. The more of you there are striving to stay on track, the more motivators you have to assist you when your focus wanes. Our participants who attend with friends or family are our longest term attendees. Some of our long term participants now exercise in addition to our classes with people they met at boot camp!
Do a fitness test
Test yourself now and then aim to really improve on the levels in 6 weeks. I have a home fitness test you can do. Please leave a comment below and I can send you one.
Get your workout gear ready before going to bed
If you do early morning workouts or exercise at work, then organising your gear early is one less barrier in the morning when you’re wrestling with motivation
Make sure you get 7 hours sleep before a morning workout
Try to stop those really late nights mid week. Feeling tired when you wake up will inevitably lead to you hitting the snooze button.
Set a goal
Is there anything you’ve always wanted to achieve? A fun run? An adventure race? A duathlon/triathlon? Consider setting a goal and then train for this goal.
Make a fitness ‘advent calendar’
Choose a date, then commit to how many workouts you’ll do by this date. (I often use this motivation tool myself). I choose the date of an event, a holiday, my birthday etc then commit to how many workouts I’ll do before then. Make it achievable, but an improvement on your current exercise levels. Then I print off a page with the numbers 1 – 50 (or however many workouts you’ve chosen, and the date of the end point. I cross off a number each time I do a workout. Sounds silly and simple, but it really works when you can see your progress laid out in front of you. When you know you’re a couple of workouts behind you really want to squeeze them in. You might even want to think of a reward for if you achieve the number by the set date!
Think about your workouts as non-negotiable
And talk and act as if they are too! Don’t wake up and decide “if” you are going. Just consider you “are” going. From the start of the week, get in your mind that you are going so you can’t talk yourself out of it.
Put your alarm on the other side of the room
You’ll have to get out of bed to make the annoying noise stop. Don’t get back in.
Download a smartphone fitness app
There are many fitness apps that will help you to record, measure or design your exercise sessions. Some of the excellent ones available for iPhone include: Run Keeper, Run Meter, Nike GPS+, 100 Pushups, Full Fitness, Smart Coach, Nike Training. A new app can be a motivating way to get you running again. Schedule in your exercise
We already know you don’t have the time, so write it down like an appointment every day. You wouldn’t cancel an appointment, why would you cancel on yourself? Treat your workouts like the other important appointments in your life.
Get the family involved
Run while your daughter rides her bike. Go to a local track and let the kids play their own games. Make family time active.
Gather the right people around you
Four words, four reasons – motivation, inspiration, determination, conversation. Surround yourself with friends who think positive and support your healthy behaviours.
Put the pain in perspective
When the going gets tough, remember that you have survived so many things that don’t even compare to the discomfort of exercise. What’s the big deal? Some of you have endured child birth, trips to the dentist, waxing, broken bones, broken hearts… and so much more! You are tough and can handle a few lunges and pushups!
Just show up
Go to the gym, class, or the park. Once you’re there, it’s hard to say no. 98% of life is showing up. Promise yourself you’ll get there and do at least 10 minutess. Once you’ve started you’ll be fine.
Follow a healthy eating pattern. If you limit your calorie intake, you will not have enough energy to work out, affecting your motivation too.
Understand your energy cycle.
We all have times of the day where we are more energetic than others. If you struggle with mornings, schedule your exercise at lunchtime or after work. If you are exhausted after work then set your alarm early and get out for a sweat before work. Try to complete your workout when you feel the most energetic.
“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit” – Aristotle
What do you repeatedly do? Make healthy living practices your habit.
Do what you enjoy
Think about what activities you like and base your fitness program around these. Forcing yourself to regularly participate in workouts you hate does not promote long term commitment!
Keep your workouts fresh by changing what you do. Try new activities, change locations, vary the intensity. You will have noticed that our courses use variety to keep you motivated and keep the results coming.
Keep a record
Write down your workouts. This will highlight a week that needs some more exercise, or reflect a successful workout week. Having a few blank pages in the journal should prompt you to get out there for a session, and most people get a real kick from looking over their achievements.
Hire a Personal Trainer
Even if it’s for just four sessions, some one-on-one coaching can make a huge difference to your enthusiasm.
Treat yourself to a new workout outfit
Sometimes something as simple as a new top or pair of running tights can get you excited about your next session.
Make yourself some new playlists
Music has been proven to improve exercise performance as well as motivation. Put together some new high paced tunes to inspire your next workout.
Remind yourself of the benefits of exercise
Regularly thinking about how great you feel after a workout will help you to get to that workout! Remind yourself that even if you feel lethargic at the start, by the end you’re feeling energised, strong and glad you did it.
Set regular short term goals as well as long term ones
Our courses are 6 weeks for a reason! 6 weeks is a manageable time to stay focused and committed to a short term goal. Set a goal to achieve by the end of your 6 week course.
Count your steps
Buy a pedometer. For as little as $5 you can pick up a very powerful fitness tool to measure your activity levels and motivate you to increase them. You don’t need a fancy one. 10,000 steps per day on average is recommended for good health.
Set goals that are not weight focused
You might want to lose a few kilos or a clothing size, but make sure you set other goals that are not related to your appearance. Evidence has shown that weight related goals are less motivating in the long term than are fitness event related goals.
Attend all classes in your course
Our participants have told us time and time again that our boot camp and boxing classes keep them on track and assist them in staying motivated to do other exercise and eat right throughout the whole week. If you disappear from classes it will be harder and harder to reignite that fitness spark. Consider your classes the minimum requirement – a non-negotiable!
Do you have any tips for boosting motivation? Please share your thoughts in the comments below…