Let’s face it: there are days and even weeks when we just don’t feel like exercising. We may be tired, overwhelmed, lost sight of our goals, or just stuck. Whatever the reason, it can be a huge challenge to motivate yourself and stay consistent. That’s why we’ve put together a few practical tips to help you keep your enthusiasm, consistency, and motivation.
Some Fitness Motivation Tips:
1. Set yourself clear goals
Goals are important! Several studies have shown that goal setting is directly related to higher motivation, self-esteem, confidence, and independence (1). For this reason, we always advise our clients and our community to set clear goals at the beginning and throughout their fitness journey. However, it is very important that your goals remain realistic and achievable.
You can see how to set SMART goals in our article “Your fitness routine: How to get started”.
Clear goals give you an orientation and serve as a guide to success. Since you always have in mind what you have to do to achieve your goal, you will not lose your motivation either.
2. Have fun exercising
Nobody enjoys doing something they don’t want to do. In fact, we’re more likely to lose interest and motivation altogether. A recent study found that even active people, by do the same exercise for a long time, eventually lose the motivation to be physically active. (2). A varied training is therefore the be-all and end-all.
This is how training can be fun:
- Sign up for a group course
- Train with a friend or friends
- Join a fitness challenge
- Try new exercise equipment
- Experiment with different training methods (HIIT, target training, yoga, boxing)
- Change your playlist
- Watch different workout videos
3. Reward yourself
Our brains are wired to do as little work as possible for as much reward as possible, and pleasure is a reward our brain loves. Joy is an essential feeling that triggers the release of the happiness hormone dopamine. Dopamine acts as our brain’s main reward center and plays an important role in motivation, mood, attention, memory, and movement.
Whether it is a new pair of leggings acai bowl, or an episode of your favorite series — rewarding yourself after a workout creates a neurological habit loop that keeps you coming back to it.
4. Stick to a training plan
Making decisions takes a lot of energy and in today’s world, we are faced with thousands of decisions every day. A training plan is a surefire way to avoid what is known as decision fatigue. As previously mentioned, our brains are wired to work as efficiently as possible, and anything that slows the brain down is seen as a threat we want to resist. By sticking to a plan, we increase our productivity, create healthy habits, and become less distracted.
5. Change your mindset
Change your attitude towards sport & be thankful for your body and everything it does. What is normal for us may not be the case for everyone else. That’s why you should be thankful that you can still move, walk, lift, jog, run or just stand up – it’s a great blessing.
When you see exercise as an opportunity to improve and extend your life, you can develop a new appreciation and enthusiasm for exercise.
How to change your mindset:
- Keep a journal where you write down all the things you are grateful for or what you appreciate about your body
- Connect with your body through meditation or yoga
- Find out why exercise is beneficial and can significantly improve your life
Read Also Flat Stomach Exercises
6. Find friends to train with
We are social creatures by nature. If it’s difficult to motivate yourself, then you should meet up with friends and take part in a group class together. It can also be very motivating and uplifting to meet like-minded people who have similar goals, and it can help you look out for one another.
Studies have also found that social support has a positive effect on physical activity and vice versa (3).
How to find fitness partners:
- Do a boot camp
- Sign up for a class at the gym
- Find a suitable online forum
- Train together with friends
- Try different sports
7. Challenge yourself
By challenging yourself, you can take yourself to the next level, break bad habits and try new things. In addition, you can use so-called challenges to track your progress and set small goals that you can work on.
You could try these fitness challenges
Walk for 30 minutes (with incline) for 30 days
This way you can tighten your thighs and improve your condition at the same time.
Choose an incline of 5 to 10% and start at a walking speed that you are comfortable with. You should do this workout every day and try to increase the speed 1 to 2 times a week.
Do push-ups for 30 days
This way you can get stronger, build muscle, and generally get fitter.
Aim to do 30 to 50 push-ups for 30 days. Depending on your fitness level, you can do women’s push-ups on your knees or regular push-ups. To make it a little easier for you, you can spread the number of repetitions throughout the day.
60-second jump squats
With this full-body exercise, you can improve your strength, endurance, and endurance.
Do as many jump squats as you can in one minute. If you run out of strength, you can skip the squat. Write down how many repetitions you did and repeat the exercise every 2 to 3 days. The goal is to surpass your previous performance.
You can do these challenges for 30 days.
8. Take photos of your progress
Sometimes it’s better to visualize your progress than to write it down.
Just by looking at ourselves in the mirror, it can be hard to see the changes in our bodies. This is because we see each other every day and are constantly changing minimally. That’s why we recommend taking regular photos of your progress. This way you can document your journey, see small changes yourself and prove to yourself how far you’ve come.
Here’s how you can take photos of your progress:
1. Show your character
It is best to wear tight-fitting sportswear or swimwear. You should be able to see your arms, abs, and thighs, as this is a great way to tell if you’re losing weight and/or gaining muscle.
2. Wear the same outfit
If possible, try to wear the same outfit over and over as this will give you a more accurate picture of your progress.
3. Choose a plain background
Stand in front of a white wall or a clear background with no bright colors or patterns. Always take the photo in the same place.
4. Photograph yourself from multiple angles
Put your camera on a tripod or ask someone you get along with to take a full-body picture.
Angle 1 – full body picture from the front
Angle 2 – side profile 1
Angle 3 – side profile 2
Angle 4 – from behind
Make sure you are standing up straight and have a good posture.
Make sure the room is well lit with natural daylight or as bright as possible with no shadows.
6. Check your progress once a month
The best interval for these photos is at least once every 4 weeks. This gives you enough time to visibly change your body.
And not to forget…
The most important thing is to take this journey patiently and step by step. If you follow the above tips, you will not only stay consistent but also motivated. Always remember to be kind to yourself and enjoy this journey.