Dig Deep: 5 Simple Tips to Reclaim Your Motivation
It's easy to get discouraged. Maybe you've suffered an injury and had to take a break from your fitness routine. Over the weekend, maybe you indulged a little too much, you're bloated, and feel like a complete failure. Perhaps someone made a mean comment to you in person or online, it struck you the wrong way, and now all you want to do is sit on the couch and stuff your face. Maybe the scale just isn't budging no matter the intensity of your workout or how healthy you eat.
It happens. Working toward a fitness goal can be tough. It's normal for motivation to ebb and flow. Everyone struggles now and then, but what matters is how those struggles are handled. Challenges are inevitable, but they don't have to stop you in your tracks or set back your progress.The following five tips can help you get back on track today.
1. Seek out inspiration
Sometimes all that's needed is a spark of inspiration. Instead of lounging on the couch watching TV, hop on the internet and look up fitness inspiration. Set a timer or an alarm for 15 - 20 minutes to ensure that you don't get sucked into a rabbit hole. Then scroll through Instagram, paying particular attention to fitness hashtags. See what workouts your fitness friends are completing or check out some new yoga poses you might want to try. Knowing that your friends are getting their workouts in will make you want to get up and exercise, too. Pinterest is also a great resource for inspiration. Find some fitness quotes that speak to you, save them in a board or to your phone to look at next time you are lacking a little ambition. Once your time is up, get moving!
2. Only 10
If nothing is inspiring you at the moment and the thought of doing a full workout makes you want to climb into bed for a nap, try this trick. Get dressed and give yourself permission to just do 10 minutes. That's it. When your 10 minutes are up you can stop. Once you get moving and find your groove in the workout, chances are you'll want to keep going. If not, that's okay. 10 minutes of moving is better than not moving at all. This trick always works for me, especially in the early morning hours when I'm extremely tired and the coffee just isn't cutting it. Give it a try to see if it works for you.
3. Reconnect with nature
If you are still recovering from an injury, in a bad mood, or just really tired, head outside for a walk. Fresh air and sunshine work wonders. Not only are you getting your steps in, but getting outside also helps clear your mind, improves your mood, and gives you an energy boost. If you have snow, build a snowman with the kids or have a fun snowball fight. If the weather is nice, maybe kick a ball or play catch. You could also visit your local or state park. Take your phone to capture photos of birds or the landscape. Connecting with nature is a great way to reclaim your motivation and get your exercise in for the day.
4. Remember your why
People get excited about new things: shoes, clothes, cars, household appliances, tech, etc. The same is true for fitness goals. There's a lot of hype surrounding the new year with setting resolutions and again with the anticipation of spring and summer. People vow that they are going to get in shape and look amazing. As time passes and they go about their daily tasks, that excitement wears off. The new things are worn or used a few times and their allure goes away. The new workout program was fun initially, but muscle soreness or injuries happen and suddenly exercise becomes a chore. The thought of eating healthy and working out seemed glamorous and exciting, but sticking with it day in and day out turned out to be a lot harder than expected.
The reality is in order to achieve your goals, you have to put in the effort. You have to be willing to work for what you want. It isn't easy. It requires sacrifice, sweat, and sometimes tears. This is why it's important to know why you're doing it in the first place. What is your goal and why do you want it? Maybe you want to look good in a swimsuit, feel more confident in your clothes, or maybe your goal is to simply be healthy. Make sure you understand why you're working toward this goal and let that motivate you to get up and get your workout done.
TOPICS with TRACY | MOTIVATION
5. Tough Love
Building on your why, it's important to understand that motivation doesn't last. Motivation is not what is going to get you to your goal. To truly succeed, you need to make your workout a priority. Your goal should be non-negotiable. Flip your perspective and change your mindset from I can skip my workout to it's getting done no matter what. Get in the habit of showing up for yourself and getting your workout in. It's just like brushing your teeth or going to work every day. You may not want to and you most likely are not super excited about it, but you still do it anyway. Working out is much the same. It's not a question of motivation, do you feel like it or not, you just do it.
If you are sore, find a way to ease your muscles. Do a light workout, try a yoga class, stretch, or take a hot bath. If you are injured, see your doctor to find the best course of treatment and find out what modifications you need for your current program. There's almost always something you can do.
This mindset and creating a habit is what will ultimately eliminate the need for motivation. Above all else, remember: if it's that important to you, you'll find a way. You'll get it done. If it's not, then you won't.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Alyssa