Top 5 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Exercise

couple working out together

Five Great Tips to Keep Your Exercise Motivation Flowing!

Motivation is often defined as the desire to take action toward meeting a desired goal. While coming up with a goal, like firming up for bathing suit season, might be easy, finding the motivation to take action is a bit more complicated.

When the action doesn’t require much effort, like pulling the tub of ice cream out of the freezer, it’s not too difficult to find the motivation to do so. When the action requires you to work hard, however, like getting your butt to the gym, motivation can be harder to come by.

So, how where can you find the motivation to reach your fitness goals?  Here are five great ways to get started. Before you know it, your motivation for exercise will be flowing and eventually you’ll even find yourself craving it!

Top 5 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Exercise

1.)  Forget that You’re Exercising

The best way to discover the motivation to exercise is to forget that an activity is exercise. When physical exertion is enjoyable, the desire to take part in it is greater and the willingness to overlook mild discomfort is higher. Find something you enjoy doing. Join a co-ed sports team, take a walk on the beach, go for a hike, or jump on the trampoline with the kids. If you’re having fun, you won’t even notice how hard you’ve worked, but those unwanted pounds will!

2.)  Surround Yourself With Fitness Oriented People

There’s truth to the old saying, “Misery loves company”. By the same token, those who are motivated to exercise tend to find company in others who share the same priorities. Find a training partner or attend a group fitness class. Fitness oriented people will understand your goals and what you are going through, but can also help to hold you accountable if you begin to lose track. If you can’t find a friend to workout with, look for a qualified personal trainer. That little extra motivation in the pocketbook won’t hurt, either.

3.)  Track Your Progress and Set Goals

Goals can serve as tremendous sources of motivation in and of themselves. Are you getting married next summer? Did your doctor tell you that your blood pressure is too high? The trick is to find a goal and track your progress toward it through small attainable steps. Want to run a marathon? Start by running a mile, and then slowly increasing your mileage each week. As you see progress, the motivation to continue will increase. Don’t worry. If a marathon seems like too lofty of a goal, signing up for a 5K could prove just as motivational.  Try utilizing a workout journal to keep track of your progress as it is a great tool to keep yourself motivated.

4.)  Read More

Subscribe to a few fitness magazines and read them regularly. Simply reading about new exercise programs, yummy nutritional recipes, and inspiring fitness-oriented people can be motivation enough to lace up the running shoes. The more you learn about your body and its needs, the more you will feel the need to take care of it properly.

5.)  Take Baby Steps

Rome wasn’t built in a day, and your new, trimmer physique won’t be, either. Take baby steps toward reaching your fitness goals. Can’t find the motivation to hit the gym for an hour? Motivating yourself to take the stairs at work a few times might seem a whole lot easier. Don’t want to run a mile? Walk one instead. Accumulating a few 10-minute sessions of physical activity throughout your day can be just as beneficial as one long one session. Once each step is easily attained, try adding an extra minute, or two, at a time, until you reach your ultimate goals.

Final Thoughts

So there you have it, five great ways to stay motivated and on track with your exercise and fitness goals.  Following these five tips should give you all the motivation you need to approach and eventually conquer your goals. You can accomplish whatever goal you have set-forth, be it losing a few extra pounds before summer, fitting into that old pair of jeans that you just can’t seem to fit into anymore, or even achieving a six pack of your dreams!

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Author Profile: Kym Votruba

Kym is an ACSM Certified Personal Trainer, a health/fitness advocate, youth sports coach, and an experienced freelance writer who specializes in active lifestyle content including health, fitness, sports, nutrition, travel and more.

Disclaimer: The views of the author are his or her own, and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Ask The Trainer.
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