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How to start working out: self-motivation 101

Posted on 6 Jul 10:33

It’s not even close to being an enigma that incorporating some kind of physical activity into one’s life is a great step towards the healthier way of living. This is understandable — changing is often hard. When you are facing some difficulties at the beginning of your personal journey that are inevitable, really, but still make you second-guess your decision to start this whole process, it’s one hell of a deal to push yourself forward and continue bettering your lifestyle.

 

The good news is that it’s only the first couple of weeks that you find hard to get through. Thus, the main issue you have is to find a way to make this short period of adaptation easier and more enjoyable for yourself. The key to that is having a strong motivation! The following tips will help you with this.

 

Tip #1. Set definite and realistic goals

Knowing the reasons for working out makes it easier for you to start and keep going. Ask yourself why you are doing it. Is it to be more fit? Maybe you want to feel stronger? Or maybe you want to change something in your life?

It will be your constant source of motivation which is extra-needed when you’re new to the whole workout thing.

However, when setting the goal, make sure it’s achievable — if a goal is too far away from you, there’s a big chance you will soon get tired and disappointed. What can really help is to divide one big aim into a couple of small ones. Reaching goal by goal, you become satisfied with the mid-term results and want to continue to get even more.

 

Tip #2. Start small 

It’s a common knowledge that working out should be done on a regular basis, but not everyone is able to do so. However, regularity doesn’t imply continuation.

Working out doesn’t mean dedicating 1-2 hours each day! If you don’t feel like training for an hour or so, don’t have enough motivation or just can’t handle this much exercise yet — try to trick yourself and start small. Even 5-10-15 minutes a day will make a difference to how you feel about working out. The goal is to get used to it, gradually increasing the time and load.

Additionally, when you are already deep into the fitness game but appear to have no motivation (which happens even to the best of us from time to time), this trick will help you get through the workout easier. You get warmed-up, have your mood uplifted, and won’t even notice when the workout is over.

Remember and remind yourself that you can do it. You can make it happen!

 

Tip #3. Do what you like

If you aren’t in the mood for a workout, don’t make yourself do it. Instead, replace a workout with another activity that seems appealing to you.

This is not about sitting on the couch, watching movies and eating stacks of junk food, but about doing those types of trainings that feel most enjoyable to you. It may be hiking, riding a bike, boxing, yoga, pilates, jogging, jumping and dancing and so on. Whatever it is, make sure to do your best in each session, to get your sweat on, and do it on a regular basis.

 

Tip #4. Find your time

Starting to work out, think about making it the most suitable for you. This comes not only to choosing the right type of workout, but also to the time of the day you’re doing it. Morning workouts, besides looking and sounding great, may just not be for you. The same might be with the evening trainings — you can be too tired to work out after the whole day of work.

Listen to your body and go for the time when you are at the peak of your biological activity.

 

Tip #5. Reward yourself

Even though working out makes you feel and look good, sometimes it’s just not what you want. And when you have no motivation to go through a workout, the good old reward-system comes in quite handy.

Don’t confuse it with the simple “you do, you get” relation because it’s just no good for building a healthy relationship with your regular physical activity. Rather, make yourself think that in order to get something you need to work out — plan something pleasant after your workout session to help you get through it easier.

It doesn’t have to be actually dependent on whether you train or not, just a simple encouragement works well: going to a spa, watching a movie/TV show, buying something desirable, and so on. Just make sure to avoid food-rewards as it is easy to indulge too much and mess up the results.

 

Tip #6. Take a photo of yourself

When you look in the mirror, you constantly change the pose, try to find the best angles, show your “best sides”. However, taking a full-length picture of yourself lets you look at your figure more objectively, analyze what you have and what you can work with. It’s not about self-abasement, though! If you don’t look like you wanted to, there’s no need to panic — we all started at some point, and all you need is to work on self-improvement and be persistent with it.

The so-called “before pictures” help us find the motivation to change something in our lives. Look at other people’s before and after photos — if they could do it, so can you!

 

Tip #7. Style

When you’re feeling good in what you’re wearing, the process of working out becomes a lot more pleasing. Thus, by getting some nice workout clothes you are giving yourself an additional motivation to start moving and get that heart-rate up. So why not buy yourself some nice top and leggings and enjoy the extra-stylish workout?

 

Tip #8. Keep it social

Having a workout buddy or joining a fitness group is proven to be a great boost of motivation to work out. Besides the shared struggles, you can keep each other updated with the results, your workout plans and goals, inspire each other to keep up the hard work. If you happen to not have any acquaintances that are into sports, then social network groups will help you find the people to share your workout journey with.

 

 

Working out is sometimes tricky when it’s not something you’re used to, but that fact shouldn’t stop you from adding physical activities into your life. Once you’ve overcome the laziness and malaise, you’re deeply in the fitness game.

With these tips in mind, start your own workout path with no hesitation and no procrastination.

First we form our habits, then they form us.