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8 ways to stay motivated to exercise regularly

health and fitness Oct 18, 2019

It's so important to keep active, especially as we get older. Keeping active will give you more energy, help you to stay focused, increase your strength and endurance and will improve your quality of life. However, I understand that sometimes it can be hard to feel motivated at times. Trust me, I know the feeling. So, I've given you 8 ways to stay motivated to exercise on a regular basis.

Create a plan

I tend to feel less motivated to workout when I don’t know what I’m doing. Imagine getting into a car, knowing where you want to go but have no plan or direction of how you’ll reach your destination. Along the way you’ll get frustrated due to lack of clarity and precision. It’s the same with a workout. If you have no clue what your goals are, where you are going, how you see yourself and what workouts you need to do to meet your goal, then you will get bored and frustrated. To turn this around I suggest you:

  • Determine your fitness goal and purpose (for e.g. is it weight loss, gain muscle, strength and endurance)
  • Find out what exercises you need to do to achieve your goal
  • Identify what interests and works for you so that you are likely to stick it out
  • Write a realistic exercise and nutrition plan to meet your goal
  • Then put in work and put that plan into action

Focus on exercises and activities you enjoy

If you don’t like jogging then it’ll be difficult and challenging to maintain a jogging programme but if you like to do circuits or dance for example you’ll find this easier to stick to. So be sure to identify your interests and what gives you energy. When you do an activity / exercise you enjoy, you are more likely to feel motivated, participate and will put more effort into working out.

Start small and take it slow

Once you have a plan, it’s very easy to get excited, to throw yourself into it and expect results straight away. I’m sure some of us have been there before, where we join a gym or buy exercise equipment and promise to use it everyday, we use it a few times and then lose motivation because of our high expectations. Don’t expect to be superman, superwoman or super fit right away, it all takes time. Here’s what you should do:

  • Start off small, with small realistic goals such as losing 1-2lbs a week
  • Commit to something which is manageable for you to start and complete. So if you know you will not workout five times a week for an hour, try not to set the bar too high.

Once you start small and your small workouts become a habit, it is then easier to progress and develop to the next level. When goals are smaller and realistic you are more likely to achieve it, and if you achieve it you are more likely to stick it out.

Track your Progress

Don’t you love that feeling of accomplishment and achievement – when you set yourself a task or a goal, follow it and complete it? I love that feeling and the best way to know you’ve achieved something is to track your progress. If your goal is to lose weight, then track your food intake and weight. If your goal is to increase your fitness levels, then use a stopwatch to measure your workout time and heart rate. I do this because simply put, there is no use in working so hard towards something or thinking you are working hard towards something and a few months go by and you realise you are still the same you were a few weeks ago. Measuring your progress helps you realise if your plan is working or not, allows you to identify room for improvement and helps you recognise if you are on the right track.

Add variety

When you do the same workout all the time, it becomes repetitive and routine and you may eventually get bored and give up altogether. This is where variety is important. If you want to see change, feel motivated and keep your workouts interesting, then be sure to mix it up. When you do the same workouts over and over again, your body gets used to it. You are no longer challenging yourself or your body to change. Keep your workouts interesting and mix it up.

Listen to music

I always have to have my music when I workout. The reason why is because it motivates me when I listen to my favourite songs and it really pushes me to work harder. According to research listening to music whilst you workout, boosts your performance by 15%. I truly agree with this. When a favourite song of mines comes on whilst I’m running on the treadmill for example, and the beat is pumping, my movement gets faster, I double up my incline level and speed and increase my movement. So next time you feel unmotivated to workout, update your playlist and put on your favourite song.

Join a class

Have you ever been to the gym or exercised alone and gave up halfway through? Working out alone may cause you to skip portions of your routine, to lack of motivation, feel shy or simply not do the right workouts due to lack of knowledge. This is why group fitness is fun and will motivate you. When I qualified as a Group Exercise Instructor, one of the things I was keen to do, was make fitness fun and that’s when I came up with the idea to have a fitness party. The one thing I love about The Fitness Blastoff is the platform that allows us to exercise as a group in a party environment. This is why I love group fitness because of that social element and connection, that extra motivation you get from others. Plus there are a number of exercise classes for most people nowadays, from Afrobeats to a workout in heels, to insane training (INSANITY) to light hearted Zumba. There is something that will cater to your wants and needs.

Attend a fitness event

When attending a fitness event you can meet like-minded people, network and meet industry specialists that can help you in the future, learn something new, try out new healthy products and increase your motivation. I love attending fitness events because it really motivates me when I’m surrounded by experts and other people who are either on the same journey as me or who are where I’d like to be. It’s inspiring and motivating.

Workout with a friend

If you lack motivation to work out, then why not try exercising with someone else? Working out with a friend, a partner or a work colleague will really help make fitness fun because you have someone you can share your goals with. Scheduling gym or workout sessions with your friend means that you will show up because you wouldn’t want to let anyone down. It means that you can encourage each other and go that extra mile.

Thanks for getting to the end of the blog! I hope you enjoyed reading it and will feel motivated to exercise on a regular basis.