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How To Find The Motivation To Exercise... And Enjoy It!

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Oh crap.

It’s here again.

Workout day…

You’ve planned to go to the gym (or if you’re my client you’ve had an email pop up in your inbox: “Hey, here’s your workout for today!”)... but you’re just not feeling it.

Too much work, too little sleep. So much to do, not enough time. You’re just not motivated to work out.

Maybe the thought of exerting yourself physically makes you feel a little bit sick. Time to stick your head in the sand and busy yourself with other things, right?

Well I’m not going to let you do that, am I!? Certainly not, my friend. I am here to give you a gentle, loving kick up the bum so you can get motivated and finally reach your fitness goals.

You and I both know that you want to achieve something - you wouldn’t be here reading this post otherwise (thanks for joining me, by the way). You have a reason to work out and eat right, but that alone may not motivate you enough to get you into some spandex and under a barbell.

I want to help you feel motivated, build a regular exercise habit and importantly, enjoy working out.

Know that you’re not alone: many people have struggled to exercise regularly, and many more will in future. In my experience, there are some key differences between those who achieve their fitness goals, and those who fall off the wagon, never to return. The good news is that it’s ENTIRELY up to you which path you take. The decision to take positive action is yours.

Here are my tips to help you more easily make healthy choices and stick with exercise long term:

Build A Motivated Mindset

Your mindset is not only an essential element of your overall health and wellbeing, it also indicates how you’ll deal with stress and challenges in your life. If you keep telling yourself how difficult and stressful life is, how busy you are, and how much you really, really don’t want to go to the gym… guess what? Those things will all come true.

I’m here to let you know:

  • You can prioritise yourself - and not feel guilty about it!
  • You can manage your stress in a healthy way, reacting calmly even when the sh*t hits the fan.
  • You are in charge of what you tell yourself inside your head.
  • Exercise can (and should) be an enjoyable part of your life that you look forward to and reserve time for.

The people who make it happen for themselves do exactly that: they make it happen. It’s all about taking responsibility, as well as rejecting our human tendency to crave instant gratification. These guys are okay with the fact that consistency and sustained effort over time reap the greatest training results. They keep it simple, don’t overthink things, and just get on with the work, one step at a time.

Many people succumb to the temptation to go ALL OUT in training, battering their bodies with long, brutal workouts because they’ve missed so many gym sessions or they’re so desperate to achieve their goal. That’s not a sustainable or workable solution. No coach or trainer worth their salt would programme workouts in a way that pushes you too hard or that you can’t maintain long term. Plus, it’s not an enjoyable solution, which leads me onto my next point:

Enjoy The Process

To be truly successful in reaching your fitness goals it’s important to be able to visualise HOW going to the gym will get you there. Picturing how each specific workout or exercise will benefit you helps your brain to connect the action to the desired result. This will help you to show up regularly, work out with intention, and feel better about exercising in general.

It’s important to understand that it will you some time to reach your target, and that you need to make it your job to exercise in a way that you enjoy. Anything you’re going to stick to long term has GOT to fulfil you in some way, rather than being something you have to put up with to get what you want. Remember that if you really want to achieve your goal, you’re also going to have to sustain it when you get there… that means continuing exercise for the rest of your life. Find a way to enjoy it =)

You are more likely to maintain great habits when you are aligned with the the process of exercising regularly as strongly as with your desired outcome. Speaking of habits…

Discover the 10 lifestyle foundations you need in place to optimise your health, fitness and wellbeing...

Create Healthy Habits

Consistency is key. The easiest way to become persistent in your efforts and resilient enough to constantly overcome obstacles is to build healthy habits that you can leave on autopilot. That way, exercise becomes something non-negotiable in your life. Like brushing your teeth in the morning, you just incorporate it into your day, finding ways to still get it done even when obstacles occur such as having no running water at home, or a work event during your normal training time.

Building habits takes time. When I think back to all the months my parents spent reminding me to clean my teeth when I was a little kid, it helps me understand why it took me such a long time to get into the flow of working out regularly. Your first few months of training will probably require some willpower, planning, and real grit to get you through. You will almost certainly fall out of your habit at least once during this period. These days, when I notice that one of my clients has missed a few workouts in a row for the first time I congratulate them. After all, it’s an exciting time. If you can make it through that first tough period, your chances of long term success are greatly improved.

Finding True Motivation

Committing to a goal simply isn’t enough if you really want to reach it. The difference between people who succeed, and those who never make it is a willingness to commit to the process: and that means putting in the work! Whatever tough feelings or life challenges that get in the way, you are more than capable of this. I’m rooting for you =)

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