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Published on August 11, 2021

6 Ways to Find Fitness Motivation

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6 Ways to Find Fitness Motivation

Are you struggling to find the motivation to stick to a workout routine? Well, you’re not alone, whether you’re drained from a job, exhausted with a newborn, intimidated to start or outright lazy, the truth is motivation is easily lost when life gets tough or you don’t work at it on a regular basis.

How many new year’s resolutions did you break every February after promising yourself to stick to an exercise plan?

Well, many reasons can account for breaking your promises to yourself and you’re going to find out 6 ways to find the fitness motivation you need to get you back on track.

1. Link Exercise to Pleasure

When you hear the word exercise, your mind is most likely going to label it as a painful experience. More so, if you engage in it irregularly.

You see, as humans we are hard wired to seek comfort and avoid pain[1] at all costs.

As you put your body through the stress of exercise, therefore, you’ll be quick to label it as a painful experience, more so if you don’t make it a habit or set any underlying purpose behind your exercise regime.

Luckily, however, your mind can choose what you derive pleasure from and it all boils down to tying your goal to a purpose and positive emotion.

Most of the time, people start exercising without ultimately knowing the emotional reason behind wanting to exercise.

‘I want to lose weight’. Sure, but why do you want to lose weight?

Maybe because you want to feel great or feel strong and healthy in your own body.

Well feel those feelings.

All you have to do is set yourself and maintain a strong underlying positive purpose behind your exercise routine and your mind will start to register the positive feelings of your vision every time you workout.

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Just like any habit, the more you feel the positive feelings of the goal you want to achieve, the more results you will see. Every time you exercise, your mind will mask out the pain as it brings your fitness goal to the forefront, making exercise a more pleasurable experience.

So clearly set, define and feel your ultimate fitness purpose and your mind itself will motivate you as you program it to reach your goal.

2. Find What You Like

You may have the idea that exercise is all about running on a treadmill for 30 minutes to an hour, three times a week, until you’re covered and dripping in sweat.

Let’s face it, the treadmill isn’t exactly the most ecstatic of exercises.

Beneficial? Absolutely, but I don’t blame you for lacking the constant motivation if it feels as though you’re running on a hamster wheel.

Well, that’s some people’s cup of tea, and if it is great! BUT if it’s not yours then there are many other options out there for you to choose from.

It’s important that you like what you’re doing if you want to find the fitness motivation to really get going.

Your problem may be that you’re simply not aware of the different ways your body can exercise.

Exercise should be fun to begin with. If it isn’t, then you are limiting yourself to the wrong activity.

There are literally hundreds of different sports and exercises to choose from. Try exploring different fitness avenues until you find a few activities you best love doing.

3. Seek an Accountability Partner

It’s easy to miss or skip a workout when the only person you report to is yourself.

Chances are you’re not so likely to get up at 6am on a cold rainy day to train if you’re nicely snuggled in bed and prone to laziness.

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Why? because we’re conditioned to avoid pain if nothing challenges us.

That’s where an accountability partner or personal trainer can come in handy to you. You see, in general, there’s something about disappointing or displeasing others that irks most people.

When you are committed to showing up and have someone waiting for you, you won’t want the embarrassment of having to say sorry for having slept in.

How’s that for fitness motivation?

4. Find a Role Model

Fitness can be tough to maintain over a longer stretch of time, though many people successfully manage to do so.

Whether you’re a beginner who’s intimidated to get started or a regular who’s struggling to keep consistent, looking up to a role model can be your key to fitness motivation.

In life, If there’s a goal you really want to achieve, then chances are, it means somebody has successfully accomplished that goal before you.

Not exclusively, but most of the time.

Modelling someone in the fitness space, therefore, ticking all the goal boxes you wish to achieve can drive you to keep showing up day in/day out.

By adopting their successful daily habits and routines and applying them directly into your daily schedule, you may find the success formula to keep you motivated and see the results you want to see.

Often it’s not the lack of intention that hampers your fitness motivation, but the incorrect strategy and inefficient results.

Modelling the right person and strategy and seeing consistent results on a regular basis, will almost certainly boost your morale and keep you committed to working out.

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5. Brush up Your Diet

Yes, you’re always hearing about which foods are good and bad for you and why you should try out tens of different diets to feel great.

While you don’t need to necessarily enroll on a strict restrictive diet, you do however need to watch the foods you eat everyday.

If you have a regular habit of snacking on Doritos and ordering junk food for dinner, then you’re most likely not going to regularly feel great in your own skin.

When you don’t feel great in your own body, your self-esteem and energy levels usually take a dip to suboptimal levels. The result will be lower to a complete loss of fitness motivation.

Adding plenty of clean healthy foods to your diet, therefore, will help signal to the mitochondria in each one of your cells to produce more energy.

The result will be a healthier, more vibrant you. As you feel greater and lighter in your body and mind, you will find fitness motivation much easier to come by.

6. Mix it Up

Have you ever noticed that we are creatures of habit?

You may like setting a routine for yourself because you feel comfortable with what is known and familiar to you. That’s because deep down there’s something about uncertainty that scares you.

It’s normal, most humans are uncomfortable with uncertainty.[2]

In fact, most of your daily routines tend to follow a repetitive cycle and your exercise routine most likely is no exception to that.

As you get used to one activity, your mind is quick to memorize it and switch on your autopilot function every time you workout. As a result you’re unlikely to experience any new emotional thrill or motivation.

…..And since emotions run life, we need to experience change and uncertainty to experience new positive emotions.

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If you find yourself bored, therefore, or unmotivated, it’s most likely due to the lack of change in your exercise schedule.

So try to mix up your weekly exercise habits. Once you’ve found those activities you love doing, start incorporating a few of those into your week.

For example, if you’re used to simply jogging everyday for 30 minutes, try to cut it down to 3 times a week and on the other days fit in activities such as weight training, swimming and/or yoga, to name a few.

The choices are endless!

If after a few months that too gets stale, mix the routine up again. Either change the order and frequency of your exercise schedule or change the schedule and exercises altogether.

Choose whatever triggers your mind to experience change and something new in your routine.

Takeaway

So there you have it, these 6 tools will boost your confidence and fitness motivation to generate consistent results.

Start seeing the pain of exercise as a blessing to being able to generate and create something great. The joys of life and exercise cannot be cherished without an opposite to contrast against and be grateful.

Remember it’s completely normal not to feel like exerting on most days and throw in the towel. The motivation to do so, however, and remain committed is 100% in your control.

So it’s now time to take back charge of your mindset and start feeling like your most vibrant self again.

Are you ready?

Featured photo credit: Fitsum Admasu via unsplash.com

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Reference

More by this author

Mathieu Ganado

FitYoga Instructor, Blogger and Wellness Business Owner

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Published on September 3, 2021

6 Friday Motivation Tips to Help You Stay Motivated

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6 Friday Motivation Tips to Help You Stay Motivated

You know the feeling—that “I still have another whole work day to get through” feeling? It sucks. The worst part is knowing that you have to get up, get to work, and be productive when you feel checked out, unmotivated, and would rather go back to bed. The trickiest part about it is that even though you may know intellectually that you’re not the only person who has ever felt that way, at the moment, it can feel very lonely.

If you feel the Friday funk and want to shake it off, try these six tips to lift your Friday motivation.

1. Eat a Solid Breakfast and Plan to Eat Lunch

The first thing you can do to lift your Friday motivation is to eat a solid breakfast. We have all heard the phrase, “breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” It turns out that it wasn’t just something our parents were telling us to get us to eat before school. Studies have shown that eating breakfast can help with improved memory, recall, mood, and visual-motor functions.[1]

However, researchers have found evidence that the benefits of the micronutrient boost provided by breakfast do wear off after a while. Just like a car with a full tank of gas that runs out after a long journey, the body needs to be refueled. Therefore, planning to eat breakfast and lunch on a day when you are not feeling your best could give you that extra boost you need to get through the day. Skipping meals can lead to low blood sugar, which can leave you feeling weak and tired.[2] If you are already struggling with feeling motivated, not eating is only going to make you feel more sluggish and less inspired to get anything done.

2. Prioritize What’s Urgent

I have always been a fan of the cheat sheet. No, I’m not a cheater, but I love knowing what needs to be done. No one wants to waste any precious energy trying to figure out what should be done when you are already feeling unmotivated.

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No matter who you are, there is a high probability that by Friday, on any given week, you have at least one or two items that were supposed to be completed earlier in the week but just didn’t get done. Here is my quick trick for figuring out what’s urgent.

Just ask yourself these three questions:

  • Are there any projects with deadlines that have passed already but are still due?
  • Which of those projects is the most overdue?
  • Of the overdue projects, which will take the least time to make significant progress or complete?

This should help you to easily identify at least one task that you can spend time working on diligently, knowing that you are getting something important done.

3. Tackle the Low-Hanging Fruit

Another way to refresh your Friday motivation is to tackle the low-hanging fruit. There is nothing wrong with doing the easy stuff first. Maybe you are so burned out and the urgent tasks will take too much energy. There is nothing wrong with knocking out the obvious easy things. Emails, filing, data entry, document reconciliation, follow-up calls, editing or revising written work, and research are all low-hanging fruits—these are all straightforward tasks.

Getting these easier tasks done will give you a sense of accomplishment. You can leverage this sense of accomplishment to help you tackle some harder tasks or get all the easy tasks done so the following week, you can dedicate your time to the harder projects.

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4. Give Yourself at Least Two Scheduled Breaks

Give yourself at least two scheduled breaks during the workday. Life is stressful. Feeling like you have to work when you don’t feel up to it is stressful. Let’s not compound it by forcing yourself to sit in front of the computer all day with no breaks. The days of believing that “lunch is for punks and working 80 hours a week is what you should be doing” are fading away—if not already a distant memory for some.

In fact, scientists discovered that, although “taking short breaks throughout the working day may not have as obvious an impact as taking a holiday, research has found significant benefits. Studies have found that breaks can reduce or prevent stress, help to maintain performance throughout the day and reduce the need for a long recovery at the end of the day.”[3]

Before you sit down in front of your desk for the workday, set three alarms—two 20-minute breaks and one lunch break. You aren’t proving anything to anyone by forcing yourself to be miserable in front of your computer. You deserve flexibility and compassion. Let these breaks be a radical act of self-care.

5. Listen to Some Upbeat Tunes

Another way to improve your Friday motivation is to listen to some upbeat tunes. Music is medicine. It is not a mystery that the vibrations of sound can affect our mood. Ancient communities knew this and embraced it through practices like chanting, the use of singing bowls, chimes, bells, and other sound instruments as tools for healing. Practices like Kirtan and Bhakti yoga use chanting to heal and shift energy. The Hindu and Buddhist religions use bells and chimes in many of their spiritual healing rituals. Throughout the modern world, we have adopted the use of signing bowls for energetic healing.

Most people could recall at least one moment in their lives when music or sound has helped shift their mood. Music has been shown to have a direct effect on the listener. Studies show that listening to music while you work can lead to an “increase in both mood and quality of work”.[4]

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If you are feeling super unmotivated, the solution to your problem may be throwing on your favorite album in the background while you try to get a few things done. If you can’t work while listening to music with words and you do not like classical music or traditional jazz, explore genres like Trip hop, house, ambient, Beach House, JamBand. You may also enjoy artists like Bonobo, Thievery Corporation, and Grammatik.

6. Give Yourself Something to Look Forward To

As a yogi, I’m all about being present in the moment. But sometimes, the present is a little too intense, and being super present is not going to help to improve your mood. In those moments, tapping into the power of positive anticipation can be your secret weapon because “knowing that something good is coming your way pushes you to accomplish those tasks you may not necessarily want to do.”[5]

We all love to be rewarded, especially when we are doing something we don’t want to do. Giving yourself something to look forward to is the way to guarantee that you will be rewarded for the hard work of getting through the day.

The reward doesn’t have to be immense. It can be something small like getting ice cream, going for a walk, spending time with friends, or vegging out with your phone on do not disturb for a few hours. I used to employ this trick a lot when I was in boarding school. The time between semesters in new England would feel so long especially in the winter that my friends and I would let ourselves get excited about little things like drinking lime rickeys at Brigham’s. Believe it or not, it worked.

Try it the next time you get the hit with the Friday funk. Think about something you can look forward to no matter how small, and notice how it shifts your energy.

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Final Thoughts

As the adage says, “this too shall pass.”

Friday is just a day like every other day before it will end. One thing you can count on is that time waits for no one, so despite how difficult it may feel to get through, know that the time is on your side.

No matter what, Friday will wind on. The best thing you can do to improve your Friday motivation is to make sure that your body has the micronutrients it needs to power through the day, identify what’s urgent, tackle low hanging fruit, give yourself time away from the desk, throw on your favorite tunes, and think about the fact that you have the entire weekend to look forward to.

You got this!

More Tips on How to Improve Your Friday Motivation

Featured photo credit: Brooke Cagle via unsplash.com

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