Not everyone likes the gym, fact!
And let’s be honest, exercising can be a drag.
We all live hectic lives these days and finding time to fit in exercising can be difficult. And, if we’re not 100 percent motivated to doing it, it can be all too easy to put it off.
But you’ve made a promise to yourself to get in shape, so once you’ve made that promise, how do you keep that motivational flame alight?
First off, you’ve already proved you have what it takes by making that promise to yourself. And sometimes that can be enough of a driving force.
Some of us, however, once we’re on the road need a little nudge of encouragement every so often to keep going.
So, we’ve compiled our 7 top tips for staying motivated on your fitness journey:
Motivate yourself by changing your perspective
Change always starts in your own head. No matter what it is; giving up smoking, losing weight, changing jobs or anything that involves a big change it always starts with you. Sure, you can use a personal trainer, go to meetings, etc., but at the end of the day, you are the only one who can make it happen.
When it comes to fitness and getting in shape, you can stay motivated by simply changing your perspective. Don’t think of exercise as a drag, taking you away from the important things in life such as social media, television and work. Think of yourself as the healthy, fit person you want to be.
Try and take inspiration from around you.
Maybe you’re a parent. Getting fit and exercising can help you enjoy being a parent more as you’ll have more energy to run about with your children. Think about the example you are setting them as well.
Maybe you know someone who is unable, for whatever reason, to be physically active and think how lucky you are that you can.
Use whatever inspiration you need, but remember that committing to getting fit starts with you.
Goals = Motivation
Like anything in life, setting goals is an excellent way to stay motivated.
With fitness, maybe it’s signing up and doing a 5K run, getting a black belt in martial arts or even just getting back into that old pair of jeans.
Writing those goals down is even better – especially if you put the paper you jotted them down on somewhere you’ll look often, e.g., the fridge, the dishwasher, top of the laptop.
If you can see your goal written down, it will remind you every time you look at it why you are doing it.
If you find that your goal is too big and you think at the outset, slightly unachievable then simply break it down into smaller, manageable targets.
For example, running a 5K race. Set yourself smaller goals of running further distances every week. Say, the race is eight weeks away, at the end of the first week your target could be running 500m, second week 1Km, by the end of four weeks 2.5Km. When you hit each of these smaller targets, you’ll feel great, positive and motivated to hit the next one.
Schedule your workout -preferably for early in the morning
Not everyone is an early bird, but by scheduling your fitness activity for the morning gives you less time to talk yourself out of it. Exercising can also be very energizing, making it the perfect thing to do before the day gets going.
Whenever you do decide to exercise, make sure you plan your workout schedule ahead of time. This is a great motivator because, like the goals, if it’s on your calendar it means you will be less likely to skip them. And at the end of each workout session tick it off your plan along with how you feel.
Another little trick is to set reminders on your phone which will serve as an obvious reminder so you will never forget to go.
Stay motivated by finding a fitness buddy
Working out alone, for some, can be deadly dull, even if you’re plugged into Spotify on your phone. And, if you find it dull and boring then you’re more likely to lose motivation.
So why not find a friend and exercise together?
This will help keep you motivated in several ways:
– If you know someone is going with you, you’ll be less likely to cry off
– If you see your friend doing better than you, that will help push you more
– You can motivate each other when the going gets tough
– You can share tips and progress
– You can always grab a drink after your workout – that’s got to be a win-win situation
Visualise success and think positively
This is tied in with changing your perspective and the whole idea that ‘thoughts become things’.
Visualisation is a technique that has been used for years.
Close your eyes and just imagine what it would look and feel like to achieve your fitness goals, or complete an exercise.
By doing this simple exercise you can prepare yourself physically and, sometimes more importantly psychologically for the task ahead.
If your head is in the right place before you exercise, and you’re thinking positively you’ll get more out of it.
Here at Combat Arts, when Gordon trains people, either in his group classes or 1-to-1 session, he sets the training up with a small, but important ritual. He has a salutation at the start of each session designed to place his clients in the optimal state to learn, train and maximise the effectiveness of the training.
Creating your own ritual can be something as simple as smiling when you are getting changed to start your workout and telling yourself how great the session is going to be and how fabulous you will feel when you finish.
Once your workout is complete keep thinking those positive thoughts and tell yourself how much you enjoyed it and how well you did. Positive reinforcement is another powerful self-motivation technique which increases your motivation to keep going.
Let rewards be your motivation
No, we don’t mean scoffing cakes after every workout.
Create your own ‘reward system’ for your fitness journey.
This could be something as simple as:
– exercising outdoors and doing some simple stretching whilst looking up at the sky
– Some relaxation time to yourself after each workout
– A small indulgence at the end of the week if you reach your goal
– putting £5 into a jar after each workout and when you reach £100 buy yourself a new outfit, some new workout gear, etc. and every time you wear it, you’ll remind yourself that you did it once and you can do it again.
Rewards reinforce habits, and once your gym routine is habitual it won’t require as much willpower.
Make exercising fun
These days wanting to get in shape doesn’t have to mean going to the gym, lifting the same old dumbbells and going through the same boring programme week-in week-out.
Exercise can be any physical activity that you do to improve your health and fitness exercise and can be anything from archery to Zumba.
So the best way to motivate yourself to getting fit is find something you love to do.
Of course, here at Combat Arts, martial arts is our cup of tea and we specialise in training mature adults (over 40s) who want to get back in shape and regain their ‘mojo’.
Our training programmes are martial arts (authentic and real) but they are definitely NOT about the fight.
It’s about your own training, your body and your mentality.
We use the very best protocols and techniques from some of the best martial arts in the world including Thai Boxing, Pencat Silat, Kali and Jeet Kune Do (JKD) to:
– help you learn how to train yourself
– help guide you to your best shape ever
– give you back your power, focus and intensity
If you’re over 40 and want to get back in shape, don’t use any of these tired old excuses. Combat Arts might just be what you are looking for.
Check out our training packages and let us help you lose that lockdown belly, get fit, get strong and get focused.