I’ll be the first to admit that I think of every excuse that I can come up with before I have to go workout. Even after 3 years of making fitness a priority, I still find myself being a slacker and needing motivation to workout. Remember how people said that, “if you exercise constantly, you will crave a workout?” Yeah. That’s not real – at least not for me. Do I feel weighed down after a weekend of poor eating and lack of exercise – sure, but I hardly ever crave the workout. Regardless, I know that fitness isn’t about a goal body for me and rather about a healthy lifestyle. In case you need a virtual “pep talk” from a bestie, here are things that I do to keep myself motivated to work out.
Remember that the Ability to Exercise is a Blessing
No matter how old you are, you will never be as young as you are today again. Your body will continue to push against you as you age and things won’t work the way they used to. The fact that we are physically able to exercise our bodies is a gift in itself. There are so many ways to work your body including stretching, pilates, and other low-intensity workouts. Remember, it doesn’t have to hurt to be effective. Take care of your body for the temple that it is and exercise it as a thank you for its hard work in protecting your most important assets like your mind and heart.
Mind Over Matter
It’s true that your mind is stronger than your body. That being said, you shouldn’t just work out because you want to lose weight. While that may be motivating for a day or a week, it won’t be effective long term. Like I mentioned before, my priority is for my body to stay strong to protect me and one of the things I always remind myself that my will is the strongest part of me and I can do anything I set my mind to.
Time Is Relative
You know how short a minute is when you are listening to your favorite show? Now, do you remember how long it is when you’re doing a plank? Einstein was onto something with this whole “time is relative” theory. Time will move more quickly or more slowly depending on surrounding situations. One episode of Friends, How I Met Your Mother, or New Girl – that’s all it takes to get a good workout in. Put on your favorite tv show and pull up your favorite Youtube Fitness Guru and do enough videos to take up 30 minutes. When your episode is done, so are you.
Look Good, Feel Good.
When I really can’t seem to find any motivation to workout, I put on my favorite workout outfit, make myself a cute ponytail, turn on my Apple watch, and yes tinted lip balm. You gotta look good to feel good and there is nothing wrong with getting a little glam before you get your sweat on. I’m not sure why gyms are surrounded with mirrors, but if looking cute will make you feel more energized about working out then power to you. Just remember to wash off any makeup quickly after your workout to protect your skin and your pores.
Anything of Value is Worth the Hard Work
When all else fails, remember this: anything of value is worth the hard work. Yes, it’s hard. It’s supposed to be. If it wasn’t, then it wouldn’t be worth it. This alone should be your motivation to workout. The theory goes: in 2 weeks you will feel it, in 4 weeks you will see it, and in 8 weeks you will hear it – and the best part is that you will be so proud of yourself for committing to your goals, anything else is just a bonus.
Working out can be a chore, but it doesn’t have to be. Another few pro-tips are to find a buddy, join a program with tough cancelation fees like Classpass, and/or make yourself a killer workout playlist. Motivation doesn’t look the same for everyone, and it doesn’t have to. We are all different people and motivated by different things. The only thing that stays constant is the importance of building a strong body that is healthy. I hope these tips help you find the inspiration that you need to be your best self, and remember that showing up is the hardest part. Make it to the gym, take a cute selfie, and follow a workout program – baby steps will get you there.