Having a hard time finding gym motivation?? Aren’t we all.
There are a lot of benefits to being active – increased mood, improved sleep quality, and of course…a healthier you! It does not mean that it is always easy to get dressed for a workout and push yourself to an effective sweaty session. No one is perfect and we all need a little extra motivation to keep us chipping away at our goals.
Feeling the need for an extra push towards the right direction in your fitness journey? Try out a few (or all) of my top 10 tips for staying motivated for the gym.
1. Find a Workout Partner
This may be the most important tip (in my opinion) to keeping your motivation for the gym at an all-time high!
I know personally, I am probably more likely to head to the gym when I have someone who is counting on me to show up. It is also nice to know that you are motivated for someone else as well 🙂
I learned the true value of a workout partner when I signed up to run my very first Marathon. I ended up making a friend in my Marathon training class that I would complete long runs with and even ran with on race day. If I did not have someone to count on or push me, I don’t think I would have turned into the runner/workout lover I am today, or even finish that first Marathon! I think we can all agree that it can be so easy to say “ill go tomorrow” or “I have too much going on tonight”. Trust me, I say those things to myself as well but If you have someone who is waiting for you to show up it’s not as easy to back out.
A workout buddy is not only great at getting you to the gym but pushing you when you are there. People place a lot of limits on themselves so it can be wonderful to see how you can grow when others point out your strengths and push you to the best you can be.
2. Workout in the AM
Yuck, I know…It sounds awful, at least it did to me until I tried it. Let me just tell you that I am NOT a morning person, in fact, I cherish my sleep and my oh so cozy bed.
Working out in the morning has its benefits and I have actually come to love my morning sweat sessions. Let’s talk about a few reasons why switching your workouts to the AM can be totally beneficial.
First off, it gets your day started off right. I feel SO good after my workouts and it sets me up for an even better (and more productive) day ahead of me. Second, you get it out of the way! This helped me out a lot, I get so tired from super busy days at work that by the time I get home, my motivation for the gym starts to fall. Lastly, it gives you energy. This may seem crazy but I feel way more energized during the day when I have an amazing workout in the morning.
Morning workouts also help me make healthier choices when it comes to food. I am a sucker for using the excuse “I’ll work it off tonight”. This is not a good habit to get into friends! 80% of your fitness goals are based on what you eat, so sucking down a few extra treats at work and deciding to have a “hard a**” workout to make up for it won’t get you any close to that bikini body. What I’m saying is that when I work out in the morning I have already know what I burned (calorie-wise) so I focus on making healthy food choices throughout the rest of my day.
Give morning workouts a try! Aim for 3 days a week, that’s my current morning success rate 😉 I promise you will not regret it.
3. Plan your Workouts
Yaaas. Such a simple step but can be overlooked by many people.
Planning your workouts helps you get your booty to the gym and keep you motivated while you are there. Think about it, have you ever had a day with no plans? What happens? Usually you lay around (do a few things here and there) but all of a sudden half your day is gone.
It is the same at the gym. If I arrive at the gym with no freaking clue what I am doing that day it quickly turns into a 30-minute cardio session and an “ugh (cardio) im tired, that was good for today…ill do a kick a** workout tomorrow” I CANNOT tell you how many times I that exact scenario has played out for me.
Showing up to the gym with goals in mind and movements/workouts already picked out and prepared is the best way to ensure every workout is efficient.
4. Set Goals
How do you know where you are going, or what you want if you don’t set goals?
Any successful person knows that you need to pick your destination before you can get there. So, what are your goals? It does not have to be some insane, jaw-dropping goals like losing 150 pounds. Which is awesome if that is what you’re aiming for. It is also awesome if your goal is to make it to the gym 3 times this week, eat healthy for 80% of your meals, lose 5 pounds, gain 5 lbs, reduce stress. ANY goal is a great goal if that is what you want and is going to make you happy.
Don’t compare yourself! Your goals are yours…no competition besides yourself here!
I like to write my goals on sticky notes and hang them in my room or around the appt. It helps me to read them in the morning and at night to keep me motivated! It can also be helpful to tell a friend or someone you trust. This person can help remind you of what you have set out to conquer.
5. Switch Up Your Routine
Switching up your routine can make all the difference. There are two main reasons that I suggest this to keep you motivated for the gym. 1- it can help prevent boredom of doing the same thing every day and 2- it helps you avoid reaching a plateau in your progress. Muscle memory is a real thing people so it is important to switch up your routines and mix in different moves to challenge your body.
6. Sign Up For Classes
Yoga, cycling or orangy theory…whatever it may be, sign up for a class!
Signing up for a class at your gym can be a great way to keep yourself motivated to achieve those goals. It gives you more accountability to get yourself out of bed and to the gym. You don’t have to commit to a 6 am cycling class to prove to yourself you have gym motivation…start out with yoga after work, strength training with a friend, or Zumba on the weekends.
I have found that when I sign up and reserve a spot for a class at the gym I am way more motivated to show up. Recently, I got into 6 am cycling classes (one a week that is) and I love it. My new goal is to wake up early on Friday mornings so I can enjoy hanging out with my friends after work and not have to worry about skipping any workouts. Do I enjoy waking up at 5:30? Not exactly, but I love how great I feel afterward.
Another great thing about classes is that you don’t have to plan any exercises, the whole workout is done for you. Just show up, listen to the coach and give it everything you got for that class.
7. Reward Yourself
Treat Yo Self!
Seriously. Have you ever taken a second to realize how much our body does for us on a daily basis–it is amazing. It is OK to give your self rest days, I do at least 1-2 times a week. Our body needs them to recover. It’s OK to eat sweet treats and go drinking with your friends, just make sure you mostly give your body the right nutrition it needs.
Rest and food aren’t the only ways you can treat yo self. Buy your self a cute new gym outfit… I always feel a little more motivated when I look the part! If you just finished a competition or a race you had been training for, schedule yourself a massage, a mani-pedi or even a lazy Sunday!
It is so important to reward yourself for the progress that we make and to take time to realize that little steps are worth celebrating. It is all the little steps that eventually get us to our end goal so appreciate the journey that you are on.
8. Track Your Progress
Tracking your progress is so important because it keeps you motivated. I always take a “before” picture because a lot of times it can be hard to realize your progress unless you can compare it to where you started. Don’t forget to take pictures along the way, not just the beginning and end. That way you can really see your full fitness journey.
It can also be helpful to track how much weight you lift during specific movements. This will show you how you are progressing over time. It can be very motivating to look back and see the weight that you use to struggle with, which is now easy peasy!
9. Invest In A Program
I love workout programs or apps because the workouts are planned for me. I struggle with creating effective, fun and varying workouts at the gym so having someone create it for me is a huge win. Programs also help me stay on track and get my booty to the gym. It is important to know that you don’t have to reach your goals all on your own. I like to learn from people who have more knowledge and experience than I do, so a workout program is a perfect way to do so.
I know what you are thinking, workout programs/apps can be expensive! Trust me, I know. I have seen what is out there. BUT there are affordable options, I have listed two that I have used before and I absolutely love them.
Cristina Capron App – I am obsessed. I love having all my workouts right on my phone and she has a video of her completing each exercise in case you do not know how to do them. Want to know what is even better? The app is only $8.99 a month! There are also a bunch of free workouts, so you do not have to commit to a monthly fee if you want to try it out for a while!
Gabby Scheyen – She has been my first and favorite fitness model that I follow. You can purchase her “Gain with Gabby” guide that includes 8 weeks of training, nutritional guidance, and photos on each workout. She has a couple of different options, with the most expensive being $22!
10. Focus on Today!
Focus on today and act like today is all you got!
When I go to the gym, I try and get in the mindset of focusing on this workout and avoiding things like “I’ll take it easy today and stay here extra long tomorrow.” Most of the time, that does not end up happening. So focus on your workout today, give it all your strength and effort!
If you had a bad workout the day before, guess what? Today is a new day and a chance to crush your gym session. Starting your diet for the 10th time? Who cares, today is a new day to stick with it.
Focusing on the day to day instead of the whole picture can make your goals seems so much more in reach. Taking small steps at a time is eventually going to get you to where you want to be so don’t give up on yourself just because the end seems so far away.
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