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Motivation to Work Out

Updated on July 11, 2012

What Keeps Me Motivated

  • Fresh, Updated Workouts
  • Challenges
  • Group setting
  • Being held accountable
  • Knowing I will have a great work out

An Aerobics Drop Out

I have only been kicked out of one thing in my whole life. In college, a group of us decided to try our hand at an aerobics class. We thought this would be easy since we were athletes at the university. Arms and legs moving simultaneously in different directions and then hopping up on a box made us feel so uncoordinated. We fell down laughing. We were asked to leave.

My Fitness Journey

As a former Division I athlete, figuring out how to work out after my college career was over was a challenge. Being part of organized sports is a lifestyle. At some point, that part of your life is over. For some, this occurs in high school. For others, like me, it was after college. Some never played organized sports, but are looking to start a fitness regime. Fitness is an obvious component to staying healthy. I have always had it as part of my life. Now I had to figure out how to fit it back in on my own.

My post college journey to where I am today was all over the place. I first started by coaching and continuing to play my sport, volleyball. Then I was into running. Next I was working out solo at the gym. I moved back to running. Later I played in a co-ed soccer league, followed by an all-women’s outdoor league, then indoor league. After I had kids, I joined the gym.

Forever an Athlete

It was rare to see me in a dress as a child. It was NOT rare to see me holding a basketball.
It was rare to see me in a dress as a child. It was NOT rare to see me holding a basketball. | Source

How to Work Out At the Gym?

For many people, gyms can be intimidating. Thoughts run through your mind:

Do I work out by myself? I can do anything by myself. I am not shy, but I am an introvert. If I am stressed, nothing is better than a long run with my ipod. Therefore, I know I can go to the gym anytime by myself.

Can I motivate myself? I can completely motivate myself. However, with 5 little kids, sometimes I am just tired. This might be something I need to address.

What about personal training? I would LOVE to have a personal trainer. The equipment and the trainer can be intimidating. But, this would address the motivation issue for sure. But, let’s be honest. They can be more expensive than the price of your gym membership.

Do I go to a group class? Flash back. Aerobics class. I have always been on a team, but I never have done a group class with any sort of success. I was a little uncertain about this forum of exercise. This is part of my gym membership. There would be no extra cost. It would address my motivation concern. Not to mention, those classes are always pretty full. They must be onto something.

Group Fitness Classes: Round Two

After trying out a few things I came to the following conclusion: I will have more success motivating myself to GET to the gym and then let someone else motivate me afterwards. I am not intimidated by entering into a class where maybe I don’t know anyone (yet). Most athletes are motivated to achieve. But, most athletes have also been coached. You show up to practice, work hard the whole time and do as your coach instructs. This atmosphere is what I am used to and where I thrive. So, 15 years after starting this journey, I decided to go ahead and check out my second group fitness class.

The first one I went to was spinning and it kicked my behind. I LOVED it! I loved that all I had to do was show up at the right time, remember to sign in to get my bike and then just do what I was told the whole class.

I had to check out the rest of the group class schedules and find other classes that interested me. I will admit. I did skip over aerobics.

I found a boot camp class I fell in LOVE with. It reminded me of the conditioning we did prior to athletic seasons starting. I felt young. I felt strong. I really enjoyed this class. However, it was an evening class and I found myself having family conflicts and missing it often.

Once I was able to settle into a morning workout routine, I found that I have 3 favorite classes I try to attend each week. One is whole body lifting. One is cardio coupled with whole body, multiple joint exercises (ie. doing overhead press in conjunction with squats). The 3rd is an hour kick boxing class that kicks my behind each week and makes me want to come back for more.

Motivation | Source

Motivating Athletes

2 of those classes are led by the same instructor, Debbie Reichert. I noticed that her classes are high intensity, high energy, well rounded, and getting more popular each week. I went from being a group class skeptic to being bummed if I miss them. I wanted to fall in love with a class that kept me coming back. It needed to stay fresh enough so that I didn't plateau and helped me achieve my goals. What was she doing that was keeping me coming back? I asked Debbie a few questions.

Making Fitness A Profession

How did you decide to make fitness a profession? Debbie called herself a gym rat. She explained that she was approached by an instructor to consider getting certified. She decided to get certified in a few classes and try teaching on for size. She has only been a group instructor for one year.

Fitness Certifcation

Are all group fitness instructors certified? All reputable gyms will have certified instructors. Many instructors have multiple certifications.

Motivating Yourself

How do you keep yourself motivated so that you can continue to motivate me each week? She laughed. She said that this can be a challenge and stressful. There is pressure in knowing that a large group of people are looking to her for their great, daily workout. She always does her best to give her clients the best work out she can.

Preparing Fitness Classes

How does you prepare for class so that it flows seamless and we get everything accomplished during the time allotted? Prior to a class, she revisits the agenda to make sure it is different from the week before. She wants to keep it fresh, but challenging. She admits that the longer you teach a class, the more you become familiar with the flow and how long we have been doing each exercise. Music is an excellent way to monitor time and keep the class fun. She uses her own music for all her classes.

Fitness Goals

What is your goal for each class? Her goal for each class is to work everyone out as hard as she can. They have made the effort to come to her class. She needs to ensure that they are challenged. While attempting to work everyone out as hard as she can, she still offer modifications. This allows everyone the ability to take their workout to the next level or perhaps to a level at which they are comfortable.

Fitness Motivation Thru Facebook

How do you motivate outside of class? Debbie smiled. She recently began her own Facebook page, Fit and Healthy by Debbie Reichert. She has found that she has amassed more of a following that she expected. I am currently participating in a monthly challenge where we commit to 15 burpees/day. I know I would not be doing these otherwise!

She is providing daily workouts suggesting a series of exercises, amount of reps, modifications and even how to advance the routine. What a great option for those of us too busy or unable to get to the gym. All exercises can be performed anywhere!

Additionally, she has started adding suggestions for healthy eating. Nutrition and fitness are key components of being healthy.

Go check out her Facebook page. Even consider liking it. What a simple way to get a daily ounce of motivation. You know you are going to check your Facebook page anyhow. Why not make it more productive! All motivation is good motivation!

Huddle | Source

A Group Fitness Convert

After talking to Debbie, I am reminded why I keep attending group classes.

1. I am getting in shape and staying healthy for myself and my family.

2. I am being motivated by my instructor and my peers.

3. I am making more friends and encouraging friends to join.

I am fortunate that I have the time to dedicate to exercise. I am pleased that I have found classes that I enjoy and instructors that keep me motivated. I have learned that while you don’t have to join group fitness classes, regular attendance does make you a member. I kind of like being back on a ‘team’.

© 2012 Karen Lackey

Are You a Group Fitness Convert?

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    • twinstimes2 profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Lackey 

      6 years ago from Ohio

      Thanks again for reading, Nicole S. I find being motivated by instructors and peers so much more productive....and yes, way more fun!

    • Nicole S profile image

      Nicole S Hanson 

      6 years ago from Minnesota

      Awesome hub! I'm a huge fan of our gym's classes like zumba, kickboxing, yoga, and latin hip hop. So much fun and it's way more motivating than working out alone - I think.

    • twinstimes2 profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Lackey 

      6 years ago from Ohio

      Thanks, Oishee86!

    • twinstimes2 profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Lackey 

      7 years ago from Ohio

      Thanks for taking the time to leave such a thoughtful reply and kind words! Thanks for the welcome, as well! I appreciate it!

    • Born2care2001 profile image

      Rev Bruce S Noll HMN 

      7 years ago from Asheville NC

      Hi twinstimes2!

      Welcome to Hub Pages. What a wonderful and informative hub. First let me say how much I admire your energy and tenacity. You must've been one heck of an athlete.

      I was a fitness instructor for about two years after a very long hiatus from athletics, including a college career. My experience as a life architect/coach, catalyst and guide tells me something slightly different. My guess is the real motivation came from within you. No one else made you go to the gym. Sure, you were looking for compatible elements, (people, routines, etc) but you are a woman with 5 children. I would say the only way any one gets you to do anything is to convince you that you want it!

      You have presented this hub and your writing very well! I'm pretty sure that was your decision too!

      Well done!

    • twinstimes2 profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Lackey 

      7 years ago from Ohio

      Thanks for taking the time to comment, tillsontitan. I even enjoy just walking with my friends instead of talking on the phone. That kills 2 birds with one stone! :) Best of luck!

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 

      7 years ago from New York

      I love the way you wrote this hub from your experiences in college to now with five kids! You are a very ambitious lady to continue with exercise, like you don't get enough already. I have fallen into a rut and can't get out but I'm working on it. Voted up.

    • twinstimes2 profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Lackey 

      7 years ago from Ohio

      thanks again, prasetio30. Good luck on your fitness journey!

    • prasetio30 profile image


      7 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Very informative hub. I love fitness and this is one way for me to get healthy body beside jogging. I just do this in my home and I am not familiar with fitness center. The most important things is the result and how to maintain this well by do fitness regularly. Good job and rated up!



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