Staying motivated to exercise can be a challenge. Last week my kids started school and this week they all start soccer. Just thinking about the running makes me tired, and its only going to become more intense in the next few weeks. So I have to be ready to keep exercising or I’ll never reach my goals. Here are some ideas to keep you motivated, too.
Schedule your exercise just like you would any other appointment. This will help you begin to see your workouts as another part of your day instead of something extra you have to do.
Find a workout buddy – I don’t always get to workout with my two favorite workout friends but just chatting about it re-energizes me to keep going.
Write down your fitness goals. This can help create more concrete ideas surrounding what you want and what you are willing to do to get it. Once you’ve written it down cut out pictures that help you visualize your goals. Paste your goal sheets everywhere you’ll see them each day – the car, office, your closet, bathroom, on the fridge – you get the picture.
Commit to yourself. You are worth the time and effort. Delegate household chores where you can and drop to-do items that are not necessary. Sometimes we just do things because we always have or think we need to. It may be that it is an old need and is no longer serving you now. Take an honest look at your schedule and clean it up to create time for the things you really want in your life now.
Here are 10 tips on how to get motivated to exercise. We all could use a refresher to keep us going during these long summer days!
- Take before photos
- Find a picture of yourself when you looked like you’d like to look again – make copies & post all over the place – mirrors, fridge, microwave, car visor, closet door, nightstand, you get the idea. (Be realistic when choosing your ideal weight)
- Write down your goals – Pick one goal to focus on for a month, write it down and post it all over the place – see #2
- Get a workout buddy – see the blog post on choosing a workout buddy for ideas on choosing your best fit partner
- Track your progress – it helps to see how many more push-ups you can do, how much weight you can lift, how many pounds you’ve lost or gained, how many miles you logged this week, etc
- Create a food/exercise journal – writing things down makes you more accountable, creates an easy #5, and helps you focus your attention on you.
- Prizes! – pick something you really want and give it to yourself after you’ve reached your goal – see the up coming blog post on the Rules of Rewards.
- Hang your reward where you’ll see it everyday
- Tell someone about your plans – Pick a supportive person to help keep you on track.
- Breathe – Take a long breath when you get stressed or overwhelmed by your fitness goal – remember fitness progress is over time. Keep working at it and you will get there.
So many of us have great intentions to exercise but don’t do it! We are going to be exploring how to get motivated to exercise! Now that we are past the 4th and the indulgences of the holiday let’s get down to business. Exercising in the lazy days of summer is hard! Many of us want to exercise but we want to lounge in the water or sun more. So the question becomes how to get motivated to exercise.
1st – Revisit your fitness goals – Why do you want to exercise in the first place? What do you want to be different about your life?
2nd – Look at your current schedule – Schedules change with the seasons but many fail to realize that of their own. What has changed on your to-do list, time demands, and attention needs. Adjust your workouts around these new demands. It is also a good idea to begin planning for fall when your schedule is likely to change again. Don’t spend too much time on fall – just begin to consider how you might need to re-adjust.
3rd – Adjust any exercises needed – do you love to run outside but the heat prevents a good workout? Or are you a pool swimmer but can’t seem to bring yourself to stay inside on a wonderful sunny day? Find alternatives – you can come back to your favorites when the season changes.
Check on your diet – Summer is a classic time to indulge. Where can you focus your healthy eating behaviors and work on your unhealthy ones? This is not a time to beat yourself up – instead practice the 80/20 rule. 80% of the time aim for good eating behaviors.
Motivation is a combination of things and changes depending on your needs. Be considerate to yourself as you re-evaluate and re-motivate your exercise. Fitness progress is not measured in one-time shots – it is measured over time – the battle is consistency. Take comfort knowing as long as you are still exercising (even if it looks different than 6-months ago) you are still moving toward your goals.