If you’ve just begun your health and fitness journey, you might find your motivation lacking. Despite our good intentions to start off on the right foot, sometimes the hardest part of getting into a rhythm is chasing down that motivation! Making changes in your everyday life isn’t easy, and there will be days you find it hard to pause that Netflix show and get up from the couch.
But all is not lost – here are some ways to get yourself up and going on days you really don’t feel like it.
1. Remember your goals (or set some)
When you’re feeling a little flat or unmotivated, the first thing to do is remind yourself why you started. Looking back over your health and fitness goals can be great motivation to keep yourself moving forward.
If you’re a walker or a runner who’s signed up for a fun run, remind yourself of how good it will feel when you cross the finish line. If you’re trying a new home workout, think of the improvements you’ll begin to notice over time – no matter how small or big!
If you haven’t set any goals, now’s the time to do it. Keep them small and start with daily goals, like going on a 10-minute walk, then work your way up.
2. Schedule your workout
One of the biggest contributors to a lack of motivation is being time-deprived. It’s easy for a workout to slip down the list of priorities between work, kids, study, and so on!
The easiest way to combat this problem is to schedule time to workout. If things are hectic at work, make some time during your lunch hour and add it to your calendar. If the weather’s nice outside set your alarm an hour beforehand and go for a walk around your neighbourhood. If you’re exercising at home, pick an online workout to do half an hour before you start cooking dinner.
3. Think of your workout session as ‘you’ time
Another benefit of scheduling your workout is that you’re also scheduling ‘you’ time. When you’re time-deprived, having much-needed time to yourself is almost impossible.
By thinking of your scheduled workout as an opportunity for self-care, you’ll not only fit in the exercise, but also get much-needed time to yourself. Adopting this mindset helps you view working out as a treat rather than a chore, and gives you something to look forward to on your busiest days.
4. Create a workout area in your home
So, the gym isn’t for you, but you’re happy to workout at home – great! But you still have to make room inside and find a space to exercise.
If you have a spare room, transform it into your own gym. Otherwise, you can always choose a corner or side of your bedroom or lounge room. This way your active gear is there waiting for you when you get up in the morning, or while you’re watching your favourite TV show.
5. Watch TV while you workout
Speaking of your favourite TV show, why not watch it while you workout? Even better, only watch it while you workout.
Watching your favourite TV show only while you workout is a great way to both motivate yourself and schedule it into your week. If you’re streaming a TV series, you can let yourself watch one episode per workout, easily scheduling your workouts for the next couple of weeks. It’s also a great way to make time fly by.
6. Use a fitness app or tracker
One way to keep your motivation up is by wearing a fitness tracker and/or using a fitness app. They’re both great tools to keep track of how much progress you’re making.
Wearing a fitness tracker, like a smartwatch, allows you to track your vitals, steps you’ve taken, calories you’ve burned, and so on. Fitness apps can also provide you with a variety of online workouts you can do at home or on the go. Most fitness trackers and apps will also share regular reports, so you can monitor your progress.
7. Treat yourself
Most of us are so focused on working hard to motivate ourselves to workout we forget how important it is to reward ourselves for what we have achieved as we go.
If you signed up to a fun run and crossed that finish line, treat yourself to dinner at a nice restaurant on the same night. If you hit your goal of going for a walk every day, go on a trip to the movies. If you scheduled your workouts and stuck with them, treat yourself to a new pair of leggings.
Rewarding yourself for working towards and/or achieving your goals is important, as it can help you feel good about what you’ve achieved, provide you with a sense of accomplishment, and give you the motivation you need to accomplish another goal.
While these tips are here to help you – remember that motivation can come and go. If you’re really not feeling the workout, don’t push yourself. Try something a little less high-intensity like a walk outside or a yoga stretch session!