Staying Motivated to Work Out
With Guest Blogger: Sara Upton
For the past few years now, I’ve been trying to lose weight. And you know what I’ve found? It’s really hard. I wish it was difficult just for me, but I know this isn’t the case. I’ve spoken to plenty of people who also struggle to shed the pounds. Especially since, in the society we live in, there are countless advertisements for junk food bombarding us every day–messages goading us to ignore healthy foods in favor of a treat or for the sake of convenience.
If avoiding the fatty foods wasn’t a big enough problem, there’s the fact that regular exercise has to be part of the plan when it comes to getting slim. And it’s the exercise part that I find the hardest to maintain. I can refuse to eat fast food or keep candy around my house. I can avoid cooking with a deep fryer and drink water instead of soda. But it’s establishing and a maintaining a regular workout routine that has posed the greatest challenge for me. What it comes down to really isn’t so much a problem with getting active–it’s finding the motivation to maintain an exercise plan.
I’ve gotten a lot better at staying motivated in recent months, so it’s not as big of a problem as it used to be (though it is still bothersome). I thought I’d share some tips I’ve learned in overcoming motivational hurdles, in hopes that you’ll be able to use this information in your own journey of living a healthier life.
Join a gym.
Ever since I joined my gym, I’ve found it easier to work out regularly. There’s something about exercising around other people–even if I’m not in a class–that makes my workouts better. I also like the various pieces of equipment in gyms, so my visits can have some variation. Some gyms throughout America include Gold’s Gym and 24 Hour Fitness.
Get the right tools.
One tool I personally use is a sleep and activity tracker by Jawbone called UP. According to Verizon Wireless, “Users barely remember they have it on while the smart accessory tracks their daily activities, providing data to help them set and achieve fitness goals.” So if you want to see how much you’re sleeping or view how far you’ve walked throughout the day, this could be a good tool for you.
Have a vision statement.
What are the one or two primary reasons why you want to lose weight? Maybe it’s so you can have the energy to play with your grandkids one day. Maybe it’s so you can be fit enough to run a marathon. Or maybe you just want to feel better in your everyday routine. Whatever your reason, write it down and put it in a place where you can see it every day. I’ve found this helps me stay focused and disciplined.
Exercise with a friend.
Having a friend come along with me when I go for a run or head to the gym makes the experience much better. Plus, I have someone to hold me accountable when I start to sway from my focus. I’ve found exercising with a friend also helps them to stay motivated in their workout routine, too.
These are a few ways I stay motivated, and I wish I could say it’s always a breeze to get up and go work out. I have found, however, that following these tips makes it easier to get in shape.