How do you find motivation to exercise when you just don’t feel like it? I get asked this question every now and then so I thought I’d write a post about it. There are many ways to motivate you to exercise; here are a few that have worked for me. Just remember there are days you will struggle with exercising and that’s normal.
- Think about how you will feel after a workout. I always feel great after a good workout. It’s a high. I’m sure you’ve heard of the term “runner’s high,” same thing can be found from any good workout.
- Make time for you. We make time to take care of many people in our lives yet we can forget to take care of ourselves. Make your “you” time a priority, and don’t miss that exercise appointment.
- Rewards. If you exercise for a few days, give yourself a reward! A week? Another reward. Do it often in the beginning to help you form a habit. Don’t make that reward food as you don’t want your reward to ruin your progress. I like to buy new fitness gear.
- Fitting into new clothes. Want to look good in a smaller size? Work out! Find that pair of pants you have avoided and work to make them fit great.
- Visualize how you’re going to look. Imagine a slimmer, fitter, healthier you. Let that visualization drive you.
- Read a Magazine. It motivates me to read fitness magazines. Reading through Men’s Health and other magazines can really help my motivation.
- Read a Book. I recently finished a fun running book. It made me want to lace up my shoes and head out the door every night I read it.
- Blogs. I enjoy reading other blogs about people who are into running, or losing weight. It can show the ups and downs they go through which tells me I’m not alone in this struggle and you can learn from their experiences.
- Calories burned. If you count calories, you know that the more you exercise the more calories you burn and the bigger your calorie deficit.
- Success stories. I find the success stories of others incredibly inspirational. The teambeachbody website always has success stories and they are inspiring.
- Stress relief. All wound up after a long day at the office? Get out and work off that stress. This is a major motivator for me. Somehow exhausting myself can be the most relaxing part of my day.
- Time for contemplation. The quiet of exercising is great for your thinking and sorting out your thoughts. Most of this post was written in my head during a recent run.
- A workout friend (accountability partner). I have a few friends I like to meet to go running on Saturday mornings. It’s great to have the company and catching up with them on how the week was. It’s also motivating to get my butt out of bed and go run as I know they will be there waiting for me and I don’t want to disappoint them.
- An exercise log. Write it down. There’s just something hard to explain about the feeling when you can look back and see your accomplishment.
- 5K race or other fun runs. Just sign up for one and you’ll be motivated to train. I keep a few races on my schedule to push me year round.
- The dreaded “blah” feeling from not working out. I hate how I feel when I skip a workout. I remind myself of that when I feel tired.
- Your before picture. You often don’t realize how far you’ve come. Take pictures as it’s a great way to see your progress. The scale doesn’t tell the whole truth. A measuring tape is another great way to track your progress.
- Think about it as being fun. Exercise should be fun. If it isn’t, try a different kind of activity that you enjoy. As long as you’re moving, it’s good for you.
- Reaching a goal. Set a goal for weight, or your waist measurement, or a number of days to work out, or a number of miles to run this week. Setting and tracking a goal helps motivate you to complete that goal. Make it easily achievable. I like to set short-term weekly goals and long-term goals that are obtainable if I’ve followed through on my weekly goals.
- Post it on social media or your blog. Tell people you’re going to lose weight or exercise daily, and report to them.
- Motivational quotes. I like to save a few to my desktop on my computer.
- Friends commenting on how good you look. When someone notices the changes in your body, it feels good.
- Think about that upcoming vacation or summer time. Swimming suit season is a big motivator for some.
So it turns out I’m still terrible at keeping my blog updated. 2014 was a great running year for me, I was just shy of 500 miles for the year, completed 3 half marathons and many other shorter races. 2015 will be about building off the momentum I gained in 2014 and continuing to push myself.
Cheers! (Recovery Beer – Celebrating my finish at the 2014 Good Life Halfsy)
This year I want to run over 500 miles. Doing so I hope to run a half marathon in under 2:10. That would cut about 8 mins off my personal best. I’ll be signing up for the Lincoln Half Marathon and the Good Life Halfsy again. I also plan on pushing my fitness further this year. I just started the new Insanity Max 30. It’s intense and a struggle for me but that is a good thing as I can only improve! The other thing I want to accomplish this year is to continue to inspire people to live a healthier lifestyle and grow my Beachbody Business. I’ve found I really enjoy helping people and I want to take my little side project further to get my debt paid off this year. I need to focus on what worked this past year and what I can learn from the things that didn’t work
I’ve got my list of goals, now my next step is to make a solid plan that I can follow up on. Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help you to make 2015 great! I’d be glad to help you in any way, whether it’s planning or accountability. We can accomplish a lot as a team. Leave a comment here or find me on Facebook and Twitter!
- Nike+ iPod sensor
- 1-1/4 inch heat shrink tubing about 4 inches in length.
- 4 nails or golf tees
- A heat gun or blow dryer.
Estimated time: 15 mins Cost: about $2.50 To better track my running, I bought a Nike+ SportWatch GPS Powered by TomTom (Black). I bought the one with the iPod sensor as it communicates with the watch to help keep better accuracy when the GPS signal is weak or lost. Since I don’t wear the Nike shoes that have a place to put the sensor in the shoe sole, I made a holder for it to attach to my shoe laces. There are plenty of options you can purchase to hold the sensor on your laces in the $10 range, but I thought I could come up with a different solution for a cheaper price. I was going to find a piece of rubber tube, but while wandering the hardware store, I found 1-1/4” electronic heat shrink and thought it would be a perfect option. A 2 pack of 1-1/4″ x 4″ was $2.50 at the hardware store. The 1-1/4″ heat shrink is a perfect fit for sliding the Nike+ iPod sensor. I took 4 golf tees to make holes for the shoe laces. 4 large nails would also work well for this. I then used a blow dryer on the highest heat setting to shrink the heat shrink around the sensor while leaving the tees in place until it had cooled off. Using a heat gun would speed up this process as it took a while to get the blow dryer warm enough. Since I wasn’t sure if the sensor had to be kept in a certain orientation, I cut out a small arrow out of cardboard and slid it on the sensor before shrinking the heat shrink.
After a little trimming to clean it up, I laced it into my running shoes. I think it turned about pretty well and the black blends in with my shoes nicely. I’ve used this setup for a few months now and have been very happy with it. It’s very secure and it’s waterproof so no worries when running on wet days.
A new year means new goals. I found it helpful to share my goals with others last year so here we are again.
- Complete the Lincoln Half Marathon. I ran this race in 2012 in 3:00:52. I sprained my MCL training for the race and thought I was healthy enough to compete. I ended up having to limp the last 5 miles so I’m hoping for a better experience this year. I already have a new pair of shoes on the way (thank you Sierra Traiding Post for the great deal.). I’ve loved running in my Brooks Pureflows this year so I’m hoping I love the Pureflow 2s just as much if not more.
2012 Lincoln Half Marathon
- Lose 11 lbs. My goal last year was 20 lbs but I fell 6 lbs short of my goal. This year I want to get those 6 lbs plus another 5. My plan is half marathon training, Focus T25 and Shakeology.
- 5K in under 28 mins. Current personal best is 29:27.
- Cross train by biking more this year. I didn’t get my bike out much in 2013 and that needs to change this year.
Do you have any goals for 2014? If so, feel free to add them to the comments below and we can work on obtaining them together.
I’ve now crossed the 50 mile mark for the year. I’m at 52.64 miles towards my goal of 400 by the end of the year.
I ran a 5k on my own this past Saturday and clocked in at 32:55. I feel good about this time as I didn’t walk at all during the run and I wasn’t far off from my Personal Record (PR) from last year.
I’ve dropped 3-4 lbs so nothing major to report here but I’m seeing the results from running in my waistline and feel healthier overall.
Flexibility is still poor. I haven’t done anything major on this front other than routine stretching following my runs.
A new item I’m tracking once a month is my fastest mile. Around the end of January I was able to run 1 mile in 9:37. Around the end of February I ran an 8:29 mile. I couldn’t believe I cut over a whole minute off my time.
Hopefully March will bring lower times and slightly warmer temperatures.