Working out to lose weight and gain muscle sounds like a good idea, and it is. It also sounds easy, but it’s not.
One of the hardest parts of working out is actually getting down to it. So how can you stay motivated to work out?
Start Working Out
It may sound counterintuitive, but one of the best ways to stay motivated to work out is to work out often. It can be easy to become discouraged with the pace of your progress, but the more you work out the quicker you’ll see those gains, and the more impressive they will be. Getting your workout integrated into your schedule can also be a good way to stay committed to it.
Find an Accountability Partner
Having a friend or family member work out with you, or even just telling them about your fitness goals, can be a big help when it comes to staying motivated. Having a workout partner makes working out more fun, but it also means that someone else knows when you aren’t keeping up with your goals, which can be a big motivator in itself.
A lot of people have also found that posting on social media about how their exercise is going or even starting a blog about their journey offers similar motivation to having a companion along.
Some of your friends and followers on social media will probably find this annoying, but others will likely find it inspirational. Besides, scrolling past things that we don’t care about is half of a social media experience.
Have a Goal – but Be Patient
Having an identified inspiration can help your inspiration, but it can also hurt it if you aren’t careful. Some people find that having an ambitious goal from the start helps them to stay motivated.
Others, however, may find that having an ambitious goal from the start only brings their attention to how far they have to go. The secret may be in picking a realistic goal and being patient in achieving it.
On the topic of patience, fitness expert Ruth Zukerman wrote in the Huffington Post that focusing on the benefit from each individual workout can be more motivational than focusing on an end-goal. The end goal can be far off, but every exercise session makes you healthier.
Vary Your Exercises
Varying your workout is good for your body. It helps to prevent your muscles from getting too used to doing the same thing over and over and it can help to ensure that you’re working out all of your muscles. It can also keep you from getting bored. Doing different exercises every day can go a long way in preserving interest in your routine.
WebMD also points out that if you break your exercise into smaller sessions you can start with a minimum goal and decide whether you want to do more little sessions. (1) If not, you can get back to them later in the day. Breaking exercises into pieces also make it easier to switch out the pieces to shake up your workout.
Find Exercises that Don’t Feel Like Exercises
Not all exercises are lifting weights or running laps. Some of the best exercises don’t feel like exercises at all and finding an exercise that feels more like a hobby can be good for your body and for your inspiration. Examples include swimming and yoga.
An article from the Mayo Clinic also points out that exercise doesn’t have to be scheduled. (2) Taking the stairs instead of the elevator and walking instead of taking a car can all burn calories and build muscle without the need to count reps or check your pulse.