With a renewed sense of vigor for activity to keep warmer and get fit over the winter months, I just picked up a jump rope and my honey re-installed his punching bag for me. Now more than ever I could really use today’s guest post by Beth Waters so I can keep up the motivation!
We’ve all been there before: We start a new exercise, splurge on buying equipment and clothes, start out incredibly motivated, and then about month or so later start to lose steam and end up leaving your new-found exercise equipment to collect dust in some dark corner of your home. It’s not that we don’t want to work out, or that we lack discipline, it’s just that it’s hard to get—and stay—motivated.
Because I know first-hand how difficult it can be to push yourself to workout, here are a few surefire tips to keep your motivation strong, no matter what the circumstance:
- Make your exercise routine a social one. Find a workout buddy—it could be a friend or your spouse. It makes it a lot harder to skip a workout if you know someone is waiting for you. If you are doing an exercise such as running, cycling or swimming, join a group. Most exercise groups have members of different levels of fitness. Don’t be shy if you’re a beginner, chances are you will find another beginner in the group. Post your goals and workouts on a social media such as Facebook or Twitter. This will make you hold yourself accountable in front of others.
- Keep everything in plain sight. If you run, keep your running shoes by your bed. If you do yoga, set the mat on the living room floor. Keep your dumbbells out instead of shoved in a closet. Keep your gym bag packed and ready by the front door. Seeing your exercise gear around the home will constantly remind you that you need to exercise. Quite often we see other things such as dishes that need to be done, laundry to be sorted or that nice chair in front of the television. If our exercise gear is what we see, we are more likely to exercise.
- Treat yourself to new workout clothes. Sure it’s easy to throw on that old college t-shirt and a pair of faded shorts to workout in. It doesn’t matter, right? Wrong. Studies have shown that people who wear new workout clothes are more likely to exercise. It seems that exercise clothing helps the person to identify themselves as an exerciser, and it also helps to boost confidence while working out–plus you’ll look better in proper workout gear. You can also use this as a reward system. Each week, treat yourself to a new shirt or shoes.
- Set two types of goals: small and big. It’s easy to look at the big picture and know what you want to get out of your exercise. Most of us want to lose weight or gain muscle. Some want to become more advanced in their sport. While long-term goals are great for motivation, it’s easy to lose track of them. Set small goals for yourself as well. It could be as simple as going to the gym five times a week, adding more miles each week or making workouts longer each week. Whatever small goal you choose should be personal to you. When you achieve these small goals, reward yourself. Each small goal is a step towards the larger goal.
By implanting these tips into your lifestyle, you will keep your motivation longer. Soon you will be on the right track towards fitness and health.
About the Author
I’m Beth Waters; the mother of two overly energetic and wonderful children. I am both a freelance writer for medical companies such as Liberty Medical and a blogger at Carrots Over Cake. I have decided to live a life of health and happiness with my family and love writing about my journey though it!
Alright! Beth’s tip #1 and #2 I’ve got covered and it seems to be working so far! Now for #3 and #4… do you have any tips to get and stay motivated for physical activity??