Every once in awhile, a friend will talk to me about their fitness habits or ask me for advice. My response usually consists of an excited rant about how great working out is and then giving them way too much advice. At which point I’m reminded of how good it is I started this blog way back when. I love talking about this crap. Haha.
Just recently, a friend was venting to me about workout motivation…or rather, the lack thereof. I totally related to the topic and was probably a bit too happy to brainstorm ways of how to resolve (or just reduce) the problem.
When it comes down to it, every person is different, so there isn’t one cookie cutter answer. For me, personally, there are a variety of tactics I use to get myself in the zone. Does it always work? No. But they honestly make a huge difference, often helping me get that workout in.
So if you ever struggle with feeling unmotivated to workout – or you know…you’re human – I encourage you to read through the following methods. You may find one or more give you the boost you need to workout.
1. Read Inspirational Quotes
This is my simplest method for motivating myself. I’ve got motivational quotes coming out the wazoo on my Pinterest, so I’ll frequent that or just browse through social media to get inspired by the other fitness enthusiasts I follow. It’s surprising how effective this can be sometimes.
2. Start Logging Your Workouts
The third blog post I ever shared on here was sticking to a workout schedule like a champ by logging your workouts. I believe in this technique just as much now as I did 4 years ago because it has done wonders for keeping myself accountable. Seeing a bunch of workouts filling up my schedule over the past month feels amazing. If I go too long without working out, the blank spaces remind me I nee to get my butt in gear!
3. Plan Workouts for Times You’ll Likely Be More Willing
Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about myself…like when I’m completely worthless and couldn’t care less about working out. For example, I try to always leave Fridays for rest days because I’m so unbelievably unmotivated by the time I get home from work after a long week. Some days I make myself workout in the morning because I know I’ll have a long day or am busy that night. Above all, I’ve learned that the more time that passes, the less motivation I have, which is why I try to make working out the first thing I do once I get home from work. This is how I work, so you may be different, but if you pay attention to how you feel on different days and at different times, you may just learn how to get past that wall.
4. Have the Details Already Figured Out Ahead of Time
I don’t do this nearly enough, but I know it can really help some people get their exercise in for the day. Figuring out what you’re going to do ahead of time eliminates the thinking and streamlines the process. Simply following what’s written down for the day can cut out some of the planning that may be killing the last of your motivation.
5. Try Something New
If you don’t like working out, maybe you need to reevaluate how you workout. I highly encourage you to try new workout classes to discover new activities, or maybe just venture out and go rock climbing or something. There are so many fun possibilities out there!
6. Lock Down an Accountability Partner
Also known as an “accountabili-buddy,” having someone to keep you in line with your workout schedule can make a world of difference. When I trained for my first half marathon during college, my friend and I would run together a couple times a week, and it’s exactly what we both needed to get mentally and physically prepared for our first race. Always having that go-to person can help you both keep each other accountable.
7. Set Goals
Whether you like to have a bunch of races on the calendar, are committed to losing weight, or simply want to increase the reps and/or weight you lift at the gym, goals can give you the drive to get those workouts in. If you’re a competitive person, try signing up for a workout competition of sorts. Having some sort of goal to work towards is such a great motivator. Right now, I’m motivated by my goal to run again and recover from IT Band Syndrome. So really, goals can be anything. Just find what you care about!
Bonus: Just Do It
I actually hate this advice though. Haha. But for some people it seems to work. Sure, working out is the last thing you may want to do; that’s okay. Just start going through the motions: put your workout clothes on; figure out what exactly you’re going to do; and even if you’re still cranky as all hell, just get it done. You may find that once you’re into it, it’s not so horrifically terrible like you were expecting.
How do you motivate yourself to workout?