Keeping yourself motivated can be half the battle when it comes to working out, and finding gym motivation is a struggle that everyone faces at some point in their fitness careers. Try these 10 tips and tricks to keep yourself coming back to the gym every week!
1. Establish A Routine
In order for our minds to fully commit to something and have it become a permanent habit, we need to repeat the action for at least thirty days. Before that our bodies and our minds are simply not fully engaged in what we’re doing. Come week 3 when your initial motivation and excitement for the gym begins to fade, keep in mind that you have not yet formed the habit. Keep pushing through and hit those thirty days! Then you’ll be ready to tackle the gym every day! Pick a time each day/ week that works best for you in your schedule. Having a specific time set aside for your time at the gym gives you the predictability and reliability you need to help you form a lasting habit!
2. Find A Gym Buddy
Everything is easier when you do it with a friend! Sometimes it’s just the fact that we as humans hate to do things alone and we hate to look vulnerable. If you’re someone who hates having to walk through a crowded place by yourself, going to the gym can seem like a virtually impossible tasked finding gym motivation can be difficult. It’s not the exercise itself that makes you nervous, but rather the fact that you know next to no one in there. Working out can make you feel extremely uncomfortable and awkward, so find someone you trust and can depend on to go to the gym with you! Make sure your schedules line up, and make sure they’re just as committed as you! There’s nothing worse than a gym buddy who never bothers to show!
3. Dress For The Occasion
If you find yourself struggling to find gym motivation, start wearing workout clothes during the day. Obviously if you work in an office that has a strict dress code, this can get a bit challenging. Instead of wearing your gym clothes to work, pack a bag the night before with everything you’ll need for the gym. By preparing your body for the gym, you can trick your brain into following through with the act even though you may not be 100% committed to going just yet. By dressing for the gym, you’re getting rid of any lame excuses you could use to talk yourself out of going. Eliminating as many obstacles as you can that separates you from the gym is a great way to keep you motivated and engaged in your gym habit. Prepare your body and your mind will follow!
4. Get Yourself A Mantra
If you’re not familiar with a mantra, it’s essentially an easy to remember phrase or word that keeps you reaching for your goals, and gives you that extra little push when you’re ready to throw in the towel. It can be as simple as an inspirational word, or a personal saying that you connect with. Set it as your background on your phone, have your friends text it to you throughout the day, or tape it to your mirror! Expose yourself to your mantra as much as you can each day, and repeat it in your head when that little voice tells you to quit!
5. Change It Up And Keep It Fresh
Workout routines can become dull and dry if you don’t change them up enough, and you can get bored doing the same few exercises every day. When you start to feel bored, you start to lose focus and that can make you lose your gym motivation. Constant change is the best way to continue seeing results, and to maintain your will to get up and go. Each week, make it your mission to find at least one new exercise you have not tried yet. The change in your routine will keep your mind in gear, and keep your body on its toes. If you have a specific day for certain muscle groups, switch up the order. If you normally do upper body on Mondays, try doing it on Wednesdays. Don’t let yourself get stuck in a rut!
6. Be Realistic
When we first start going to the gym, the excitement and anticipation of seeing results is enough to keep us motivated. However, progress is a process and it doesn’t happen overnight. It can be frustrating to not see immediate change, and the lack of rapid progress can cause our gym motivation to run out and can discourage us from even going. Set realistic goals, and remind yourself that it often takes weeks or even months to start seeing results. Just because you’re not seeing it right away does not mean you’re not on your way to an amazing transformation! One thing is for sure, you certainly won’t progress if you stop going altogether, so just remember that each day you workout is a day you’re closer to your dream bod! You’ll get there eventually, but don’t freak if it’s not as soon as you had anticipated.
7. Reward Yourself
Sure, going to the gym and staying in shape is a reward enough, but sometimes you just need that extra little goal to get you going. Try setting up your own reward system. For every 10 pushups you do, grant yourself 10 minutes of social media surfing. Spend an hour at the gym and reward yourself with an episode of your favorite show or a bowl of your go-to ice cream flavor. Keep it fun and keep it light, and do whatever you have to do to push yourself harder and farther every day!
8. Make A Kickass Playlist
If getting to the gym is the easy part for you but staying motivated while you’re there is the hard part, it might be time to update your playlist. A good workout playlist can be the difference between a really great workout and a workout that could have gone better. If you have that one song that never fails to get you going, try and put it at a spot in your workout where you know you tend to slack off. Change up the tempo, put on some throwbacks, or rock out to your favorite metal song. Update your playlist to keep things fresh, or search Spotify for some great ready-made playlists!
9. Set Aside Time Every Day To Workout
One of the biggest excuses we use when it comes to working out is “I just don’t have the time”. If it’s something you really want to do, you will find the time. Take a look at your weekly schedule and find a day, a time, an hour that you have free and dedicate it to getting to the gym. Eventually, it will naturally become a part of your weekly routine and you’ll begin to notice a change in your mindset. All it takes is an hour a day!
10. Have Fun!!
Most of us look at going to the gym and working out as a chore, as something we HAVE to do. If we approach exercise in this manner, we’ll begin to mechanically go through the steps of working out without actually enjoying it. Our bodies are capable of some amazing things, and there’s no place like the gym to realize that. The gym doesn’t have to be a chore! You’re allowed to laugh and enjoy it! You’re doing a great thing for your body, and you’re setting yourself up for a great future. It’s great to set physical goals and strength goals, but its just as important to set mental goals as well. If you love what you’re doing, the results will be that much more satisfying!