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Motivation to exercise slipping ?...Here are some motivational tips to help you hang on to it...

Updated on October 30, 2011

Why bother?....

We all know that exercise and being active is so important for our health. Our bodies are designed to be active and thrive on it. Long before supermarkets came along if we wanted to eat we had to go out and hunt for our food, whether it be hunting down animals or gathering berries and to do that we had to get off our bums move. Being active builds muscle, strengthens our bones, relieves stress and releases all sorts of happy hormones into our bloodstream.We know that it lowers our chances of certain health problems - high blood pressure, heart disease, some cancers and diabetes to name just a few.

It doesn't matter if you're fat or thin, short or tall, young or old, a boy or a girl, disabled or able bodied we need to exercise and the good thing is there is some form of exercise for everyone, it is just a matter of finding something we enjoy. The tricky bit is being motivated and staying motivated. Even the most dedicated of people get days where it takes all their will power to get moving.

Do you find it hard to finding the motivation to exercise?

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Staying motivated....

You've found a way of exercising that suits you, you feel great and you thought all was going well, until after a while you find your enthusiasm slipping. Don't panic, it really does happen to us all. Staying motivated can be tricky, but not impossible, there will be days that you don't want to climb out of bed - especially in the winter!! Or the last thing you feel like doing after a long hard day at work is exercising even though you now understand how a good workout will feel after a bad or long day. The trick is to find what will keep you motivated enough to push on. I can share my motivation tips with you, some are things you probably find yourself already doing. I love gadgets and recording my progress, they are the things I know help to motivate me. Here are some more....

  • Don't stick to the same routine constantly, change things around, don't be scared to try different things. Boredom is draining and will ruin your enjoyment. Imagine eating the same food day in and day out, it wouldn't be long before you lost the will to eat. It's no different with exercise.
  • My favourite workouts are running or cycling, but once or twice a week I'll do some light weights or workout with kettlebells - which are great fun, but you do need to learn how to handle them properly. Chopping and changing what you do is not only good for your motivation, it's actually good for your body too, if you do the same workout every day, not varying weight or intensity your body will become accustomed to it, which means that it won't find the routine a challenge, so you'll reach a point where you stop making progress.
  • Don't over do it!! Over doing the exercising can be as bad as not doing any at all. You'll drain yourself, your body must have time to repair itself and build muscle and it can't do that if you're constantly pounding it.... I must add that everyone is different and has different levels of fitness, so the amount of exercise one person does with ease, can be too much for someone else.
  • Keep a record of your workouts. Time spent exercising, times, speed, distance, weights lifted, heart rate, weight-loss - document anything that your interested in knowing. So at times when you lack motivation or hit a plateau - which can be disheartening - you can look back over your records and see how far you've come and you'll be motivated to carry on.

Little bits of technology that help to keep me motivated.

  • This is my favourite gadget that helps to keep me motivated.I had my heart set on a Garmin forerunner for a couple of years before I treated myself to one. It's everything I wanted and more. It has a virtual running partner that you can race against. It keeps track of distance, km run, speed, heart rate and so much more..In fact the information it stores is quite amazing and you can upload it to your computer, where you can study graphs maps, averages, compare runs. This watch can be used for running or cycling. It is on the pricey side, but for me it's made all the difference to my workouts. There are cheaper models, but in my mind this is the bees knees.

  • Music plays a big part in keeping me motivated during a workout. I'll tell myself that I'll exercise until the end of a song, if I find my mojo slipping, then I'll find I'm mid kilometre or rep, then I'll have to finish the km or set by which time another great song may have come on. I play mind games and it works well in keeping me going.

Omron HJ-112 Digital Pocket Pedometer
Omron HJ-112 Digital Pocket Pedometer

This was my first pedometer, it's a nice size and surprisingly accurate.

  • Pedometers are affordable and keep track of the distance walked, steps taken and calories burned. I had used an Omron pedometer before splashing out on my Garmin.

Cateye CC-ED300 Enduro 8-Function Bicycle Computer
Cateye CC-ED300 Enduro 8-Function Bicycle Computer

I've had this odometer for a few years now and has never let me down.

  • Odometers are a good way of keeping track of your distance, speed and average whilst cycling. This one I've had for a few years, it keeps track of your distance even when your just pottering around on your bike. My Garmin has taken over now though, but it served it's purpose in helping to keep me motivated at the time.

There will be times where we really battle to stay motivation....

It's only natural to loose the motivation to exercise from time to time. Taking a few days break won't result in a drop of fitness and may even help you to find your mojo again. So don't be too hard on yourself.


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    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      Hi Natashalh, that is an excellent tip I'd not thought of. To want to look good for a reason gives us an extra boost of motivation!! When I get around to going over this hub I think I'll add your tip!!

      Thank you for reading and commenting....

    • Natashalh profile image

      Natasha 6 years ago from Hawaii

      The thing I use to keep myself motivated is picking a date I want to make sure to look good for. It can be a holiday gathering, a picture shoot, a vacation, or even catching up with a friend I haven't seen in a while. This really helps when my motivation wanes!

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      Looking forward to traveling sounds like good motivation to keep going.

      Thank you for the comment.

    • freecampingaussie profile image

      freecampingaussie 6 years ago from Southern Spain

      My motivation to keep going ids that we are planning to visit Greece etc this year !Enjoyed your hub.

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      Hi teaches12345, finding motivation to workout is the key to keeping it up. Your workout schedule sounds good. The worst motivation killer for me is probably a feeling of not progressing which is why I like to keep track of my workouts.

      Thank you for taking the time to read my hub.

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 6 years ago

      Great ideas for staying motivated. I work out about four times per week and alternate with other activities such as walking or swimming. Keeping motivated is something we all experience and your ideas of music, alternating your routine and keeping track of your workouts are excellent. Thanks for posting this hub topic.

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      Hi daisynicolas, it can be hard find the motivation to exercise and it's those first few times that are the hardest and the rewards will out weigh the pain. If you can find something you enjoy it will make it so much easier.

      Thank you for reading and commenting....

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      Hi Maximizer, I find the days I run or workout feel so much better than the days I don't, so if I feel like skipping my morning run or workout, I focus on how I'll feel afterwards....It works for me.

      Thank you for reading and commenting....

    • daisynicolas profile image

      daisynicolas 6 years ago from Alaska

      Just getting the motivation itself is work. Good hub for jolting the lazies.

    • Maximizer profile image

      Maximizer 6 years ago from San Jose, Costa Rica

      It's definitely difficult to stay interested in working out when there are so many other things happening throughout the day. Thanks for writing this.

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      Hi barbergirl28, I'm the same, it's the feeling I get after a workout or a run that keeps me doing it and also the thought of having to work at getting fit again after a layoff hurts too much!!

      What is P90X?...I've no idea....

      Thank you for reading and commenting...

    • barbergirl28 profile image

      Stacy Harris 6 years ago from Hemet, Ca

      I think the thing that has kept me motivated the most is seeing the results and never wanting to go back to the way I was before. Last October, I started doing P90X. The program is grueling and tough... and was probably way out of my league. But I modified so I could do almost everything and then I wrote about it every day. If it wasn't for writing about it, I probably wouldn't have stuck with it. But now, it is habit and very rarely will I find myself unmotivated to get my workout in. Why - because I love how I feel! Great article and thanks for sharing your secrets to staying motivated!

    • tammyfrost profile image

      Tammy Frost 6 years ago from Oregon

      Motivated to exercise is a hard thing to do. Thanks for your tips.

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      I like to check my resting heart rate now and again, I like to see that I'm maintaining my fitness.

      Our bodies are amazing , I agree.

    • GmaGoldie profile image

      Kelly Kline Burnett 6 years ago from Madison, Wisconsin

      I find personally IF I track my resting heart rate, the numbers will motivate me. Now I can tell my resting heart rate without the heart rate monitor.

      Our body is an amazing instrument that needs exercise to energize us.

      I look at photos of myself and I can see when I was working out and when I wasn't - that is motivating.

      Wonderful information and inspiration you shared with us. Thank you!

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      A lot of people find that working out with partners helps to keep them motivated. A bit of friendly competition makes it more fun too.

    • IJR112 profile image

      IJR112 6 years ago

      The biggest motivation for me is having a workout partner. If you don't feel like working out, he/she will be there to push you to do it, and vice versa. This has made working out way more enjoyable and I'm way more motivated to do it.

    • debbie roberts profile image

      Debbie Roberts 6 years ago from Greece

      Goodluck with the Zumba, it looks like fun. I've been tempted to look more into it myself.

    • jacqui2011 profile image

      jacqui2011 6 years ago from Norfolk, UK

      Keeping motivated is my downfall. I love cycling and I'm not making excuses, but the Great British weather puts me off. My daughter recently got a Zumba fitness for her wii and I am planning to give that a go. Interesting hub and voted up.

    • stephaniedas profile image

      Stephanie Das 6 years ago from Miami, US

      I need music when I exercise, or else I completely lose interest. Thanks for the motivational hub, these tips are great for everyone who struggles to work exercise into their lives.

    • daisyf1305 profile image

      Daisy Fabelo 6 years ago from miami beach

      it's so true Music is one of my motivational factors. I kinda gave my son my ipod and now I'm like exercise whatever. I can't blame it all on the lack of music though.