Have you been neglecting the activity or workout side of the health and fitness equation? Do you find yourself waking up in the morning saying, “today is the day I’m gonna start working out again” and then the day goes by and the motivation wanes?
I totally get it, I have felt like that too, many times… But it’s time to get back on track. It’s time to gain back that workout motivation. With these 13 Motivation Tips to Workout Consistently, you’ll be moving your butt and moving the needle on the scale too!
WHY HAVE YOU LOST WORKOUT MOTIVATION?
Be honest with yourself and think hard, why haven’t you been motivated to workout lately? Is it an internal or an external reason?
We all have “perceived obstacles” to working out at some point. Even the most motivated and obsessive workout people have moments when they’re not motivated to workout. The difference between them and some of us is that they still get moving when lack of enthusiasm strikes.
But the first step in becoming motivated again is to identify where the lack of motivation is coming from. Knowing your trigger can either help you avoid it, or help you deal with the issue more effectively. It can also help you identify whether you have real obstacles to working out or perceived ones.
REAL VS. PERCEIVED OBSTACLES
A perceived obstacle may be easier to remove than a real one because it’s all about your mindset.
An example of a real obstacle is an injury that requires you to stay off your feet and limit activity based on doctor’s orders. In this situation, health comes first, and you don’t want to make a situation worse. So, staying off your feet is real and necessary.
On the other hand, an example of a perceived obstacle is the “I’m too busy” mindset. If you can relate better to this situation (or something similar), then you’ll find this post to be helpful.
At this moment, you might be thinking that I have no idea how busy your day is and that it’s just not possible to fit in a workout. But look at your list of to-dos. Is there something you can drop to give yourself time for fitness? And keep in mind that fitness comes in many different forms.
I used to ask my sister this question a few years ago. She would tell me that I didn’t understand, that she really couldn’t find the time. Then, she joined Beachbody and her motivation to exercise spiked. Guess what, that was three years ago, and she still finds the time to be active several times a week.
We all prioritize our list of to-dos mentally. When exercise is at the top of the priority list, it’s much easier to find the time.
EVALUATE YOUR OWN SITUATION
Do you feel overwhelmed? Are you depressed? Have you given up on yourself? Is your energy low for a physical reason, or for a mental reason? Have you been sick? Are you getting enough sleep? Are you nourishing your body?
What was going on the last time you were enthusiastic about working out? What was working then? Would you be able to recreate that environment today that made you successful in the past?
I could list the workout motivation tips for you and be done with this post. But the purpose is for your motivation to increase. I believe that if you don’t take a moment to assess your own situation, then you won’t know what to focus on to get back on track.
And I’m not asking you to do something I wouldn’t do either.
I just got back to Seattle after two months in Florida with my mom, who was recently diagnosed with Stage III breast cancer. She had two surgeries while I was there. I felt so overwhelmed with seeing my mom go through this tough situation and being away from my husband, that I was not driven to exercise.
There was a week that I did PiYo and really enjoyed it, felt better. But I didn’t have a routine because my schedule was different every day with doctor appointments. The overwhelming feeling won out. But I let it go at the moment because my mother’s health was most important to me anyway.
I often self-evaluate and knew perfectly well where my lack of workout motivation was coming from. So, I made a plan to get back on track the moment I got home.
Here I am, and I just completed my first workout just one day after I arrived. Now it’s your turn. Try these workout motivation tips and let me know which one works best for you.
1. JUMP IN!
I’ve mentioned this before in the 10 Tried and True Tips to Successfully Kick-Start Your Weight Loss post. I recommend the book The 5 Second Rule: Transform Your Life, Work, and Confidence with Everyday Courage, by Mel Robbins.
According to the author, you should jump into something you don’t have the motivation to do by counting down five seconds. This will prevent you from talking yourself out of it.
Even counting down is intentional because we’re conditioned to “blast off” once we get to the end of it. Whereas, we could continue counting endlessly if we were doing it ascendingly.
Give it a try, next time you schedule a workout. Countdown from 5 and blast off when you get down to the end.
2. POSITIVE SELF-TALK
Mindset is everything.
Do you ever find that you’re talking to yourself? This could be out loud or mentally. We all do it, it’s self-talk.
The problem is that we often put ourselves down in that self-talk, instead of being as kind to ourselves as we are to others. Think about it, would you tell others that they’re fat, or look ugly in an outfit? Of course not.
Then why be mean to yourself?
The great thing is that you can actively help change your mindset around workout motivation (or anything else) with Positive Self-Talk. You can even prevent from having those mean thoughts about yourself with a little bit of training.
- If you need to, write down your positive qualities. I can tell you right now, YOU ARE STRONG. That’s #1, you can continue with at least 5 more items on your list. If you find it difficult, it’s okay to ask for help from others. But try to come up with the list yourself first.
- If you catch yourself in negative self-talk, consciously tell yourself, “stop it, I’m not doing this!”
- Then, repeat those positive qualities to yourself until the negative thoughts have subsided.
Use this same technique when you set a weight loss or fitness goal. The moment you start losing workout motivation or telling yourself you can’t complete a workout, start the positive self-talk. In this situation make a list of reasons why you must workout. Start with the fact that you are very valuable and deserve to be healthy.
Final thought on this one. Don’t give up, you can train yourself to positive self-talk consistently. This can be life-changing.
You might think that this is a little much as a tip for workout motivation. I disagree. It may be that the lack of motivation extends beyond working out.
If you answered yes to my earlier questions about feeling depressed, overwhelmed, or that you have given up on yourself, then counseling could really help.
There’s no shame in it. Most of us have felt like that before. If you feel sick physically, you go to the doctor, right? Why not do the same if you don’t feel well emotionally?
I’ve been there before and going to counseling helped me succeed in relationships, personal care, and career. It can help you too!
4. GET A WORKOUT BUDDY
Find a person that you can count on to workout consistently with you. They should be motivated and should never take no for an answer. Plan out a schedule with them and leave room for flexibility. By that, I mean flexibility in adding (not subtracting) workout days.
You’ll have more success if your workout schedule is consistent when it comes to time and days of the week.
5. JOIN AN ACCOUNTABILITY GROUP OR PARTNER
Your workout buddy can also be your accountability partner. However, if you don’t have the ability to pair up with somebody to exercise, find an accountability partner or join an accountability group.
I go into detail on this topic in the Weight Loss Accountability: Why You Need It And How To Get It post.
An accountability partner goes a long way toward increasing your workout motivation. Their support and encouragement are very valuable resources.
6. BUY A NEW EXERCISE OUTFIT OR PIECE OF EQUIPMENT
Don’t you just get excited when you purchase a new outfit or piece of equipment? If you’re anything like me, some new item related to working out always inspires me.
Now don’t go out on a shopping spree if it’s not in your budget! Sometimes one little item can be enough to get you moving. New leggings, sports bra, or cool water bottle come to mind as examples.
Also keep in mind that it can be something new to you, something borrowed.
A couple years ago, I decided I wanted to start the P90X3 workout. Since I didn’t have pull-a up bar at home, I asked a friend to borrow hers. I was so excited to use it! Seriously, how badass would it be to do pull-ups without assistance?
That lit a fire under me and I never missed a workout for three months.
If you’re curious, I made A LOT of progress but didn’t get to do a pull-up without assistance. YET. But my shoulders never looked better than they did then.
It has been about 3 years since P90X3 and I’m inspired to cross that goal off my bucket list. That’s the workout I just started when I got back home. I’ll keep you posted on my progress.
7. HAVE A PLAN
What’s your fitness goal?
If you have a fitness goal that you want to reach, don’t give up! But don’t wing it either. Have a plan. Break up your goal into smaller ones and let that be your inspiration to get moving.
Are you list maker? If you are, write down your workout on your daily to-do list. Be specific about the time and activity. I have a bullet journal and I’m more likely to complete my workout when I’ve written it down on my list of daily tasks.
8. EXERCISE FIRST THING IN THE MORNING
Even though I’m not a morning person, being active first thing in the morning provides me with continuous workout motivation for several reasons:
- As I mentioned earlier, you’re too groggy to talk yourself out of it.
- It wakes you up to get more done earlier in the day.
- It gives you a lot of energy for the rest of the day. While you’re tired the first few days, about three days later you begin to feel like you can take on the world!
- You’re done and can continue your day without the thought of having to squeeze in your workout.
9. WORKOUT AT HOME
If you have a hard time getting out to a gym, workout at home! There are free and paid options available.
Beachbody OnDemand is cheaper than going to a gym. You pay an annual fee that is lower than one month’s fee at a group workout gym. It includes more than 700 workouts. Plus, you get meal plans to go along with every program. To top it all off, you can do it all from home with the added bonus of an accountability group.
Now I know I’m biased because I’m a Beachbody Coach, but you also have free options. Youtube is full of good quality and free workout videos. You can also run, walk, swim, or dance if you’re not into workout videos. Plyometric exercises are challenging and very effective. You can do them from home because you need any equipment. Basically, your body is your equipment. You can’t beat that!
10. GROUP WORKOUTS THAT YOU MUST SIGN UP FOR
Orangetheory Fitness (OTF) is an example of a group workout that you must sign up to participate in ahead of time. I love it! One of the first things I did when I moved to Seattle was to sign up for OTF.
Here’s the deal, you pay a pretty hefty monthly fee to get a killer workout. On top of that, if you sign up for a class and don’t cancel it within 8 hours from your scheduled time, they charge you. As you can imagine, there were many times that my workout motivation was non-existent. You better bet that I still showed up because I didn’t want to pay!
Is it worth it? I say yes if you have the funds for it and refuse to allow them to charge you one penny beyond your monthly membership.
11. DEVELOP A SENSE OF COMMUNITY AROUND WORKING OUT
See if your local community or park have free or paid exercise options. Choose the one that works best for you.
If you need free, apps like Meetup are excellent for finding free activities. When we lived in Florida, my husband would play beach volleyball every Saturday with a group he found on Meetup. He never paid a penny for it.
Whether free or paid, joining certain group activities or sports creates a sense of community. Wanting to see your friends alone, creates workout motivation.
12. TRACK IT
A habit tracking app is a great tool to increase your drive to work out! Challenge yourself to not break the number of consecutive days you are active. See for how many days you can go without breaking the chain.
There are also apps, like StepBet, where you bet on achieving a certain number of steps per day. Having money on the line is motivating and the possibility of earning money is even more motivating. Meanwhile, you’re tracking your activity on a daily basis.
13. REWARD YOURSELF
Don’t be afraid to reward yourself for achieving an exercise goal. Increase your workout motivation by setting up short-term rewards for yourself. For example, if you work out 3 times per week for 2 weeks, you’ll buy yourself that top you’ve been eyeing.
Rewards are very individualized and only you can choose the reward that will provide you with the necessary motivation to be more active.
FINAL THOUGHTS ON WORKOUT MOTIVATION
If you’ve been in a funk about working out, do a little introspection to see where the lack of motivation stems from. And don’t forget to analyze what prior factors increased your drive in the past. When you figure those out, incorporate them again in your life (if possible).
I know this is a long post, but if you came this far it’s because you’re trying to find that push to help you reach your health and fitness goals.
Try out the tips that you think apply best and that you can commit to. And remember that you’re not alone in this. I’m here with you.
Sign up for the 13 Tips to Get Support and Accountability printable. You’ll also receive health and fitness motivation and inspiration in your mailbox every week as part of The Fit and Healthy Baker community.
Before you go, don’t forget to comment below and let me know the tips you’ve tried and if there’s anything else that’s not on this list that gets you moving. You never know, that might be the piece of the puzzle that somebody else is missing!