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We all understand the benefits of regular exercise. Sure, you want to be healthier and you want to feel better. These are good reasons to decide to start working out. With that said, there is more to it than just deciding that you want to start working out – from picking comfortable sneakers to changing your mindset.
Maybe you have been at it for a few weeks and you have been consistent about going to the gym or running every day. After a while, you start to make excuses for why you can skip a day or you wake up early and you start thinking about how much you would rather get an extra half-hour of sleep instead of working out.
If this sounds familiar, you don’t need to feel bad about it. It is common to struggle with motivation when it comes to working out. Even the people who seem to have endless motivation probably have things they do to get over the moments when they think about giving themselves a break instead of doing what they need to do. To get over your motivation problems, you just need to find your own tips and tricks that can get you going when you find yourself in one of these moments.
Focus on the Why
Setting a goal can be good for building motivation, but it will be more effective if you connect it to something a little more personal. Whether you are trying to build strength or training to run a marathon, try to give it a meaning that goes beyond completing reaching the goal.
Ask yourself what it will mean to you when you reach that goal. When you are in the gym working out or trying to get up early for a run, you can focus on the goal and what it will mean as a source of motivation and inspiration.
Set Smaller Goals
It is great to have big goals, but larger goals often have slow progress. When you have worked hard for a while and see that you have not gotten much closer to this large goal, it can be discouraging.
Instead of just focusing on the large goal, you should also set smaller goals that can be reached in less time. That way, you will see quicker progress and stay motivated as you work out. Just focus on the smaller goals as you work out each day and then look back at how each small goal helped to move you closer to reaching the larger goal that is on your mind.
If you are in the middle of a workout and feel like you are ready to give up early, it can help to visualize the result you are after. Work on a visual picture of what it is going to be like to reach your goal. This not only includes how it is going to look, but you should also try to think about the experience and how it is going to feel. When you have this mental picture, it can be a strong source of inspiration when you are working out.
Keep a Fitness Journal
Having a fitness journal can be one of the best sources of motivation. When you keep a fitness journal, you can actually see your progress written down in the journal. You can look at the numbers, see how they have improved and plan to work harder and improve them even more. Even if you don’t have the journal at the gym with you, you can still use these numbers as motivation. Beyond focusing on how far you have come, you can compete against yourself by trying to beat the best numbers in the journal.
Find a Partner
It can be easy to give yourself a pass when you are the only one to hold yourself accountable. However, when you have a friend to work out with, you will be less likely to skip workouts. People feel social pressure to stick to their commitments, so you can use this natural instinct to motivate yourself to go to the gym. Furthermore, your workout buddy can be a source of motivation and encouragement when you are working out.