When we think of fitness, we generally focus on two areas: exercise and nutrition. This is not surprising since they happen to be things we can plan and control and obviously they are the primary drivers of fitness success. But there are two other critical components of fitness that don't get the attention they deserve and mastery of these components can improve with enough repetition. I'm speaking of time and motivation. If we don't make the time, exercise and nutrition plans will never get started or will never succeed. More importantly, if we don't find the motivation to execute when we do have time, we'll also fail.
I can't help you with your time but I can share some ideas about motivation that have worked for me. If you can make the time, you can use some of these tools to get motivated.
- If you can remember the who, what, or why that inspired you to start working out in the first place you're off to a good start. Whatever it was, it was powerful enough to move you from little or no physical activity to suddenly start hitting the gym. Even if it was just for a day, it inspired you, always remember that thing.
- If you have children, family, or loved ones who need you and care about you, do it for them. Your health is one of the greatest gifts you can offer your loved ones, and your strength makes you more capable to do more things with them and ultimately, a longer life.
- I use visualization to get motivated most of the time. I imagine I am a warrior, getting ready for battle. My posture improves, my mind is focused, and my heart gets pumping. This does incredible things for my frame of mind before hitting the weights and all throughout the workout.
- If you've been training for quite some time now, you've hopefully seen improvements in your energy, physique, attitude, appetite, relationships and so much more. Now remember the time before these good things came about. How did you feel then versus how you feel now?
- If you're like me, you love that post workout pump (and soreness); the swell and the muscle tension are drivers that motivate me. The little gains are just as exciting as the bigger ones.
- Motivation can be visual. Keep a photo of your fitness idols handy and look at them with a practical eye: they had to work just like you are to get to that level. So can you.
- The last tactic I can recommend may sound a little ridiculous but it's a dose of reality. Sometimes you just need to ignore the lack of enthusiasm. We all have low-energy days or lazy days. Push yourself to go one step at a time. It may not be the best workout you've ever had but it's better than none at all.
Remember, we all struggle with motivation, but those of us who learn to control its impact will succeed over time. Those who don't push themselves will have to reset their fitness journey again and again with no gains. Find the inspiration and get motivated.
If you enjoyed this post or think it might help someone, please share! -Calyx