Whether you're new to exercise or you've been working out for many years, dips in motivation are perfectly normal.
While the odd day here or there is absolutely nothing to worry about, what do you do if these feelings last for weeks, even months?
Below are some tips which will help you to stay motivated with exercise.
Stop comparing yourself to other people
Whether we realise it or not, we’re constantly comparing ourselves to other people on social media. Don’t let this distract you or make you feel bad. You have no idea how long someone has been training to get to where they are now, so comparing yourself to them is really unhelpful.
Everyone’s on a different journey, yours is the only one that matters. Focus on your goals and what makes you happy.
Work on your mindset
A positive mindset is crucial to staying motivated.
A great way to achieve this is to focus on how exercise makes you feel rather than how it makes you look. The goal is to move more so you feel better. Weight loss and improved body composition are great side effects of this, but don’t make it your main reason for exercising.
And remember to believe in yourself. Be your biggest cheerleader and you’ll be unstoppable!
Set yourself a target
Start with simple goals and make them realistic and achievable. It's easy to get frustrated and give up on your goals if they’re too ambitious or you're trying to do too much at once.
If you have a significant amount of weight to lose for example, stop focusing on the big number. Think about losing one pound at a time. Once you’ve lost the first pound, then work towards losing another. Keep going one pound at a time.
Focus on hitting your first target. Once you’ve done this, you can set yourself a more challenging goal. Keep going, the sky's the limit!
Remember that results take time
We all want quick fixes, but they don’t lead to long-term, sustainable results. Follow a programme that’s realistic, enjoyable and allows for progressive overload. Consistency will get you to where you want to be. Jumping on and off the bandwagon won’t.
Do more of what you enjoy
Find an activity that you enjoy and vary it to keep things interesting. Don't be afraid to try something new or mix things up if you're not enjoying your current programme.
If you’re not enjoying something, it’s highly unlikely you’re going to find the motivation to do it on those days you’re really not feeling it. If you look forward to an activity however, you know you’ll feel great afterwards and that’s what will motivate you to keep going.
Rest and recovery
It's not uncommon to lose motivation when you're overtraining so make sure you're resting and recovering properly. Take a minimum of one rest day per week (more if you’re training to a high intensity) and fuel your body with good, healthy foods.