5 Ways to Stay Motivated to Workout Everyday
A lot of us like to work out. Some of us even LOVE to work out. No matter what your degree of passion for hitting the gym and getting your sweat on, there comes a point when our motivation starts to dwindle.
We all would love to be fitness machines and hit the gym twice per day, 7 days per week, 52 weeks per year. Unfortunately, we are not robots. We are humans. Because we’re human, our motivational meter only extends so far. There comes points, and for most people, many points, when we don’t want to exercise and would rather be sitting on the couch, eating potato chips and ice cream. We all need a spice of inspiration every now and then, so here are 5 ways to help you stay motivated to work out!
Identify the reasons why you are exercising
This might seem kind of cheesy, but we all have a “Why” that is fueling our everyday actions. A “Why” is simply a dream or purpose that serves as the main driver of inspiration for you. Unfortunately, a lot of us don’t really know our true “Why.” A lot of us think we know, or perhaps have a surface-level idea of why we do what we do, but haven’t really taken the time to dig a bit deeper to fully embrace and identify EXACTLY why we do what we do.
Many times we get caught up in the mundane routine of getting up, taking our pre-workout, going to the gym, warming up, lifting weights, stretching, and then continuing on with the rest of our day because it’s just habitual. We do this again and again, and eventually, after a while, the passion and natural excitement for hitting the gym dies down. Sound a bit familiar? If so, it might be because you haven’t fully embraced why you’re doing what you’re doing.
Regardless of whether or not you think you have a full understanding of your unique “Why,” feel free to take some time out of your day and write down a list of reasons why you’re hitting the gym. Dig really deep. Why are you going to the gym 3 times per week? Is it to lose 20 lbs by the end of the year? If so, why do you want to lose 20 lbs by the end of the year? Is it to look good in a particular outfit? If so, why do you want to look good in that particular outfit? Again, a lot of us may know what we want on the surface, but when we dig deeper, our answers don’t come as easily.
Feel free to brainstorm a large list of reasons why you’re training so hard, or attempting to train hard, and identify some of those root reasons that get you really fired up. Identify those key things that get you so passionate and motivated that it almost makes you cry. After you’ve identified your “Why,” always keep it at the forefront of your mind, and envision it every time you feel unmotivated. Print off pictures of it, save it as the background image on your phone, set it as the wallpaper on your computer, keep pictures of it in your car, and do whatever it takes to remind yourself of exactly why you’re putting in hours at the gym.
Find a gym buddy
Some of us love going to the gym alone. Being a lone wolf certainly has its advantages, especially if you’re the type of person who loves having time to their self and not interacting with anyone. Choosing the path of the lone wolf, however, might be a big disadvantage when it comes to motivation.
Some say that we will fight for others more than we will fight for ourselves and, likewise, others will fight for us more than we will fight for ourselves. When we choose to be alone and put ourselves in an environment where no one is watching us, it’s a lot easier to make poor choices. It’s a lot easier to make the wrong decision because no one is there to hold us accountable. For example, if you’re sitting in a classroom doing a timed, 2-hour essay exam, you’re likely to be extremely focused, motivated, and productive. On the other hand, if you’re given 2 weeks to write an essay and can write the essay whenever you want and wherever you want, your mental and emotional state is likely to be a lot more relaxed, and gives you more room to procrastinate and put off your work until the last minute. The same concept applies to working out.
When you have a regular gym buddy, the laborious task of getting off your butt and driving to the gym becomes less of a choice, and more of a mandate. Find someone that you genuinely trust and has a high level of reliability, and set a regular day (or multiple days) each week to train together. This will take accountability to your own goals to a whole new level. On top of accountability, having a regular training buddy provides a number of other advantages like providing friendly competition, someone who can regularly spot you, and making your journey feel less lonely.
Find a gym coach or mentor
This piece of advice is somewhat similar to the previous point, but has a unique set of advantages. Anyone who has succeeded at a particular endeavor has likely achieved that level of success with a coach, or at the very least, some form of mentorship.
If you look at successful professionals, whether it’s actors, actresses,, musicians, athletes, sales associates, servers, dancers, engineers, nurses, baristas, or even personal trainers, they’ve had some form of mentorship that enabled them to develop the skills they currently possess. By finding a coach or mentor, not only will you significantly reduce your learning curve, but your motivation for success will spike almost instantaneously!
The difference between a gym buddy and a coach is that a coach does not exist to be your “buddy.” They exist to push you to be the best that you can possibly be, even if it means giving you some tough love from time to time. Whenever you feel like laying in bed and watching Netflix instead of lifting weights, your coach will be there to call you out on your laziness.
If you’re having trouble finding a mentor or don’t know where to start, a simple Google search can be more than enough. If you can, try to find a personal trainer through a local gym. That’s usually the easiest place to start. There are also endless resources online, as many coaches love to provide health and fitness tips through the internet. Keep in mind that if you’re on a tight budget, you don’t have to resort to paid mentorship. A mentor doesn’t even have to be a “professional.” A mentor could be a neighbor, colleague, friend, or family member that you use as a source of guidance and accountability. Find an acquaintance that’s willing to grab coffee with you, call you, or even just text you on a regular basis, so that they can give you that extra kick of motivation.
Find and absorb workout motivational content
Personal development and motivational content is not necessarily enjoyed by everyone, but it’s something that has the potential to positively impact everyone. As goofy as it may seem to some, absorbing motivational information has changed the life of many people.
Motivational content comes in many forms. It’s literally a challenge to find a form of motivational content that you don’t like. Motivational content can be absorbed in the form of YouTube videos, blog posts, Pinterest images, memes, Facebook posts, podcasts, audio CDs, audio books, physical books, magazines, TV shows, Netflix shows, movies, music, and the list goes on and on. There are definitely a lot of great motivational gurus that you can follow such as Tony Robbins, Oprah Winfrey, and Eric Thomas. The content that you choose to absorb, however, doesn’t have to come from the stereotypical, traditional motivational speaker. Your most effective motivational resource could be a simple, 3-minute YouTube video that was created from an anonymous content creator. True inspirational content should be anything that gets you genuinely enthusiastic and energetic about taking action toward your goals.
Surrounding yourself with personal development material isn’t just about getting you pumped up, either. It’s about gradually changing your mindset. A lot of our actions, both positive and negative, are a result of the way we think. If we can change our mindset, we can then change our actions, which then changes the results we get in life. Make an effort to incorporate self-development material into your life. It could be as simple as listening to motivational podcasts on your drive to work, reading 15 minutes before bed, watching your favorite YouTube video before you hit the gym, or even watching an inspirational movie every Friday night. Have fun with it and get creative!
Join a fitness club or group class
This suggestion is very similar to points #2 and #3. If you haven’t noticed yet, surrounding yourself with the right people plays a monumental role in keeping your level of motivation elevated. Because we’re emotional creatures, human will can only take us so far. In order to bring out the best in us, we need to put ourselves in an environment that’s conducive to the results we desire. Having a gym buddy or a coach will certainly help bring out the best in us, but joining a health/fitness club of some sort will embellish us with a sense of community and purpose.
A lot of us have a tendency to create a monster out of going to the gym. Exercising doesn’t have to be boring. It doesn’t have to be “hard work.” It doesn’t have to be a tedious activity to check off your to-do list. Exercising could be a fun, exciting hobby that encourages you to hang out with your friends, or even better, make new friends. You can go to the gym, lift weights by yourself and make a chore out of exercising, or, you can join a lifting class where you’ll be surrounded by other, like-minded people, make new friends, and even learn some new techniques.
There are so many different ways for us to hit the gym and get the exercise we need. We just need to be willing to think outside the box and try new things. Feel free to be bold and adventurous. Never tried hot yoga before? Enroll yourself in an upcoming hot yoga class! Never attended a group boxing class? Find a boxing class in your area and sign up! Never experience a hip-hop dance class before? Sign up for a hip-hop dance class! Not only will you enjoy a good workout from attending a fitness group, but you might just develop a brand new passion that will keep you motivated for months on end!
We all lose our edge from time to time. We’re human. There’s only so much emotional strain we can handle before we climb back to our beds and gorge our bodies with ice cream. Motivation, however, is like a muscle. It can be exercised, nurtured, and strengthened through various techniques like the 5 pointers above. Focus on your “why” and implement some, or even just one, of the strategies above, and watch your motivation soar through the sky.
Salutations! My name is David Hoang. I write about a variety of health topics mainly centered around weight loss, supplement reviews, and concepts to help you get the kind of health and body you desire.