There’s a seemingly unending list of benefits to working out. Beyond helping you increase your strength and burn fat, regular exercise helps you sleep better, breathe better, feel better, and even think better.
With all that going for it, you’d think it would be easier to motivate ourselves to do it! But cheat days turn into cheat weeks, and next thing you know, your workout clothes are moth-nibbled, and your sneakers are collecting dust. It happens to the best of us. If you want to turn your workout routine around, all it takes is a change in mindset and a few of our tips for motivating yourself to workout.
Dress for Success
Have you ever noticed that it’s way easier to be productive when you’re dressed for the day than when you’re wearing pajamas? There’s a reason for that! “Enclothed cognition” is the psychological concept that clothing can impact your motivation and confidence when performing a task. For example, wearing a business suit will make you feel more capable and ready to lead a sales meeting.
Don’t feel like lugging yourself to the gym? Start by taking the shorter trip to the closet and grabbing a stylish tracksuit. Once you’ve put it on, you’ll likely feel more motivated to get running.
Despite our best intentions, it’s hard to get ourselves to do something when the only consequence of not doing it is that we get to sleep in a little longer. That’s because we don’t have any accountability. Think back to when we were kids. If we didn’t have a teacher or our parents around, many of us wouldn’t have done our long division or read The Catcher in the Rye.
The best way to incorporate accountability into our fitness lives is to get a workout partner or group together. Not only will they keep you accountable, but they’ll make working out feel less like a chore and more like a social event.
Fun and Done
Sometimes, the reason motivating yourself to workout is so hard is because it’s boring. Who really wants to stand in the middle of their basement and do squats for an hour? If you want to bring a little fun into your routine, try one of these tricks:
- Try different types of workouts (Go for a hike one day and a swim the next).
- Try working out in other venues (your local park, a friend’s gym, etc.).
- Listen to a podcast or book on tape during a workout.
- Put on an episode of a TV show while you do your routine.
- Catch up with friends on the phone.
Don’t let working out feel like wasted time you could have spent doing something else. Look at it as an opportunity to do something else you love.
Believe To Achieve
One of the biggest motivation killers is doubt. We don’t want to do something because—if we’re honest—we think we’re going to fail or that it’s not worth it. If this is you, take time to acknowledge that feeling. Then, take the time to replace that thought with the truth. Countless people have reaped the benefits of working out. You can too!