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Finding Motivation to Exercise: Smart Ways to Stick to Your Fitness Goals

"I’m too tired."

"It’s too cold out."

"I have too much work."

"I’ll do it tomorrow."

Sound familiar?

We get it. When you’re tired, busy, lazy, or have low-energy, it’s hard to follow through on your fitness goals and prioritize working out.

That is exactly when having a list of motivational tips can help you push through and accomplish what needs to be done. If you’re in need of some inspiration, here are eight useful tips to help!

1. Change into your workout clothes

If you’re someone who prefers exercising in the morning, change into workout clothes first thing in the morning-- don’t even think about it. Finding something to wear that makes you feel good and confident can be a great way to get motivated to exercise. After all, you can’t waste a workout outfit.

If you prefer working out at night, always have a change of workout clothes and a pair of shoes at the ready, either in your car or at your workplace.

2. Write down an action/coping plan

If you struggle with finding the motivation to make exercise a part of your daily routine, having both an action and coping plan can help. Action planning involves specifying the details of when, where, and how you will exercise while coping planning identifies how you might cope with potential barriers to exercise, such as if the gym is closed or if it’s raining.

Take 10 minutes out of your week to write down an action and coping plan: for your action plan, decide what type of workout you’ll do, for how long, and where; for your coping plan, think of potential barriers to exercise and how you’ll overcome them. For example, if the gym is closed, you will follow a 30 minute online workout at home instead.

3. Have a workout group

Having a support system makes everything easier; plus, research proves that fitness partners, even virtual ones, help increase the amount of exercise you do. Find a group of friends who all share common values and are pursuing similar goals. That way, you can all be encouraged by each other and will be able to push through tough workouts.

4. Keep your workouts short.

You don’t need to be at the gym for hours in order to get a good workout in. On the days when you’re feeling less than motivated, even a quick 15 minute workout is better than nothing.

If you’re really short on time, you don’t even have to go to the gym to get a workout in: exercise can happen anytime, anywhere. Take a 10 minute walk three times a day and/or do a few squats, pushups, and sit-ups whenever you get the chance. Don’t think that your workouts have to be continuous: mini-workouts can really add up.

5. Make a killer workout playlist

Music is motivation. Make a playlist (or subscribe to one you like!) with your favorite high-energy songs and play it when you’re feeling too tired to get yourself to the gym. Good music with a fast, racing tempo can actually get you in the mood to move.

6. Reward yourself

If you’re just starting a fitness regime, a little external treat might be what you need for some positive reinforcement. As you get used to exercise, your brain begins to associate the sweat and pain with the surge of endorphins. After a while, you’ll recognize that the workout in itself is the reward.

7. Workout to your favorite TV show

Why choose between watching TV and exercising when you can do both? Align your workouts with your favorite TV program-- it can get you to exercise without even noticing the time. A great workout can be using a treadmill and walking when the show is playing and running during commercials.

8. Consider personal training

Having one-on-one scheduled time with a trainer can help keep you accountable. Especially if you’re a beginner, working with a trained fitness professional can help get you started on the right track and make sure you’re performing exercises correctly.

Every day is different. Some days you’re able to get to the gym in the morning or after work with no sweat, and some days, you just want to hit the snooze button. We all go through it. What matters is how you approach days like these and continuously work hard to reach your goals. You can do it!

Found this helpful? Share it with a friend! We can all use some tips on how to stay healthy.

You can also reach me via Instagram where I post everything health related. You'll see me doing some cool work with my clients at our location in Tribeca, next to Pier 26! Follow me here.


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