By Elizabeth Dubos
Disclaimer: I am not a healthcare professional or fitness instructor. I exercise frequently and would like to share my experiences and advice on fitness motivation.
Exercise is important because it can improve your physical and mental health. Exercise is hard work because it can make your body and mind ache. Motivating yourself to exercise can be difficult too because there are numerous excuses that people use to avoid it. The common excuses are they’re tired, can’t afford it, don’t have time, don’t like exercising alone, boredom, embarrassment, social anxiety, or can’t stick with a program. After people use these excuses, they feel defeated or give up. It’s important to exercise to live a longer, healthier, and happier life. Any exercise is better than nothing. Here are my tips on how you can motivate yourself to exercise more.
1. Determine why you’re making excuses. It’s time to figure out why you’re avoiding exercising. Are you nervous about exercising in public? Does it feel like there’s not in enough time in the day? Does it feel like it’s to expensive? It’s important to figure this out, so you can make adjustments to keep moving forward. For example, if you’re worried about joining a gym due to social anxiety and cost, then check out YouTube’s fitness videos. They’re free and easy to follow along.
2. Make a fitness journal. A fitness journal can hold you accountable for your fitness goals. You can track your water intake, weight, body measurements, and how much you’ve exercised. Seeing your goals can hold you accountable. Also, if you’re not seeing any progress in your fitness goals you can take this journal to show to a health professional. Then, they can make a medical recommendation based on your progress. If you’re unsure about how to organize your fitness goals, try the free Blogilates printable workout calendar.
3. An online streaming service. Are you bored when you’re exercising? Do you wish you could be catching up on the latest episode of your favorite show? Most gyms have free Wi-Fi, so you can watch or listen to your favorite movies or TV shows when you’re exercising. Plus, you can exercise longer because you will be focused on watching the show instead of thinking, “when will this be over, I want to go home?” You could try the streaming services Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, Disney+, or HBO.
4. Exercise classes. Exercise classes are great for those who are time constricted, looking for sociability, or new to fitness. Scheduled exercise classes are great motivational tools because they’ll hold you accountable for regularly exercising. If you’re new to exercising, then watch a fitness instructor lead the class where you can learn how exercise safely. There are physical and virtual exercise classes, so you can exercise in a gym or in the comfort of your home. Click the link below to find out which virtual class would be best for you. https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/health/fitness/a31792038/coronavirus-live-stream-workout-classes/
5. Retail therapy. You can exercise in whatever makes you feel comfortable, whether it’s activewear, your PJ’s, or a bathing suit. It’s important to feel confident when you’re exercising, so you don’t look at it like a chore, but a fun activity. Consider treating yourself to an outfit(s) dedicated to working out. Also, keep in mind to purchase clothes that have moisture wicking, breathable, or light weight fabric so you’re not drowning in sweat. You can purchase active wear from Target, Fabletics, Old Navy, Amazon, TJ Maxx/Marshalls, or your local thrift shop.
6. It’s okay not to enjoy exercising. Doesn’t it feel awkward when you see others smiling, laughing, or having fun when exercising and you feel sad inside? Does it make you feel like there’s something wrong with you? The simple answer is NO, there’s nothing wrong with you. You don’t have to love exercise to do it. Once you acknowledge that you will never love exercise, it will help you feel more secure with yourself because you won’t be worrying about others. When someone asks you why you exercise you can focus on your reasoning, instead of your insecurities. Everyone has their own reasons and feelings about exercise.
Edited by Ashley Ricks