2

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Exercise Motivation: What do you do?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created January 12, 2012 at 9:15 PM

I've been finding it incredibly hard to get motivated to exercise lately. do you have any tips or tricks that you use when you're feeling lazy but know you really should get in gear? lately my laziness has been winning out, but I always regret it later. help me have fewer regrets!

3b3a449b6705e9ec8b141d0bd07c1a64

(1489)

on April 11, 2012
at 02:59 PM

lol coffee yes!

7b439bc3c2033329fc3c64937825ac6c

(255)

on January 17, 2012
at 03:37 PM

unfortunately (?) I actually like the way I look naked. ;) I'm just looking for muscle tone...

7b439bc3c2033329fc3c64937825ac6c

(255)

on January 17, 2012
at 03:35 PM

I really like all of these. thanks! also, the coffee with coconut milk, I'll definitely have to try.

Eedf46c82d0356d1d46dda5f9782ef36

(4464)

on January 13, 2012
at 08:21 PM

Awesome Ali! Be warned - these things are addicting. I started with one small one and now pre-register for at least 6 events a year.

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on January 13, 2012
at 08:17 PM

I'm signed up for a Warrior Dash in March...I'm excited and nervous!

Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on January 13, 2012
at 05:20 PM

agreed, especially for more distance oriented things :-)

698db94d83dee10d6ada8cc0128d45fc

(1048)

on January 13, 2012
at 04:06 PM

My bedroom has a Yoga mat and a Kettlebell next to it that I never put away so that its a constant reminder to lift :) Furthermore if you have access to a pool its a great feeling to unwind and get a whole body workout in

Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on January 13, 2012
at 03:16 PM

Apparently this post was about as motivational as a bran muffin.

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 13, 2012
at 03:00 PM

Leopard is good- love the spots! They are both fast and motivational.

Dfada6fe4982ab3b7557172f20632da8

(5332)

on January 13, 2012
at 02:28 PM

Sometimes when I've misjudged my sprint distance and I'm wanting to slow up before the end that's exactly what I do! Ok, it's actually usually a leopard, but it works!

5e6a6f5c0fd3ab048f81c0a500206f41

(956)

on January 13, 2012
at 04:20 AM

perfect! love this video! seriously....no excuses!

01f8f38776d21288b04d9e6657dea44c

(5)

on January 13, 2012
at 12:56 AM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7I7iasuIdw&feature=pyv

Medium avatar

(39831)

on January 13, 2012
at 12:09 AM

Put weights in your office/living room so you have to walk a few feet to them and have no excuse not to do it.

A942dbc90fe12f7f90744a68f9f223e2

(249)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:46 PM

+1 for Coffee!!

C0fcb48d7da4f76fac17318efd2cd6b8

(4069)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:22 PM

Can you say more about your coffee beliefs? I am trying to find a reason/reasons to stop drinking it. Since going paleo, I have been drinking SO much more coffee. Something seems off about that.

Fc891327db916c10347b008acde0daca

(1022)

on January 12, 2012
at 10:19 PM

+1 for the music! My biggest help in working out, good, fast (house/techno) music!

Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on January 12, 2012
at 10:05 PM

I do apologise for doubling the page-load time with that post.

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15 Answers

5
235259a645be3cac56196e0489dbc8f4

on January 13, 2012
at 01:19 AM

Good question and very good responses. Ill just let you in on what Ive done as the past 6 months I have totally transformed my life and finding motivation was the biggest obstacle for sure!

  1. create a vision board - I have a corkboard of printed images of things that motivate and inspire me. A ripped physique, a picture of me when I used to be really fat. Its the first thing I see in the morning and the last thing I see at nite before bed. It reminds me "WHY" I keep doing what Im doing everyday. I also created a account at that new site called " Pinterest" -- Its a site that allows you to create boards online. I have a few boards of inspiration and motivation that I see everyday that is a constant reminder.(http://pinterest.com/artoffit/)

  2. create a goal with some purpose - A trainer would force me to create a goal of achievement. Not something like I want to be healthier but some type of competitive event. I get charged over competition so whether it be a mud run or fitness event. I felt that my training now had purpose. I was trying to achieve something. You have a deadline which is the event and you plan your eating and programming around that.

  3. save youtube clips - I have a bunch of youtube clips saved in playlists that I watch to inspire and motivate me. Another good one is Every Second Counts the crossfit movie.

  4. accountability - Have friends, family or a personal coach keep you accountable. Its a great way to keep you going and motivated. To know someone else has an interest in you achieving and helping you with your goals. Someone you can talk to when your finding yourself not so motivated or inspired. A coach I had was a great help in getting me past plateaus.

  5. coffee!! -- I second the coffee statement. Some mornings I wake up and don't feel like working out, but after that morning double shot espresso with coconut milk, I am ready to tear up the gym!

good luck!

7b439bc3c2033329fc3c64937825ac6c

(255)

on January 17, 2012
at 03:35 PM

I really like all of these. thanks! also, the coffee with coconut milk, I'll definitely have to try.

5
4d6aa1a676240b15dc569ff8ade0500f

(2546)

on January 13, 2012
at 01:06 AM

i just tell myself i only have to work out for 10 minutes. once i hit 10 minutes, i'm usually ready to keep going -- really simple, but effective :-)

Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on January 13, 2012
at 05:20 PM

agreed, especially for more distance oriented things :-)

5
04d6096309530571c96788773696a63c

on January 12, 2012
at 10:26 PM

I have finally solved this issue with the following two items.

1) Coffee (seriously, I can't believe the stuff is legal and unregulated)

2) Making it the key point to get out the door.

I think #2 needs more explanation. When I have no motivation(most days) I just say, OK, today I'm just going to go to the gym and do some squats and go home. Or...today i'm going to walk on the treadmill for 20 minutes. 99% of the time, once I am there and the adrenaline is kicking in I usually end up doing more than squats, or if its a cardio day I end up adding some sprints to my walk. However, I don't dissuade myself from going by telling myself that it's going to be some fall charged long ass workout session- that will make me want to stay home.

A942dbc90fe12f7f90744a68f9f223e2

(249)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:46 PM

+1 for Coffee!!

C0fcb48d7da4f76fac17318efd2cd6b8

(4069)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:22 PM

Can you say more about your coffee beliefs? I am trying to find a reason/reasons to stop drinking it. Since going paleo, I have been drinking SO much more coffee. Something seems off about that.

3b3a449b6705e9ec8b141d0bd07c1a64

(1489)

on April 11, 2012
at 02:59 PM

lol coffee yes!

4
Eedf46c82d0356d1d46dda5f9782ef36

(4464)

on January 12, 2012
at 10:30 PM

Somewhere along the line when I wasn't looking - it stopped being exercise and started being fun. I think that's the key.

I have two tricks: First, I stay out of gyms. Gyms de-motivate me. I feel like a hamster running in wheel or something in one of those places. Instead I play outside, I play with home-made equipment, and I do martial arts training.

Second: I pre-register for events. For me those events are obstacle and adventure races - GORUCK Challenges, Tough Mudders, Spartan Races, etc. I make sure that I always have another event coming up that will kick my ass if I'm not prepared for it.

I tell people about them. People at work, family, friends - they all know I do these events and therefore they ask me about them and how I'm doing preparing for the next one. Sometimes I'm even able to convince a few other people to do one with me.

As I get more and more of them under my belt, I find that I want to do better and better on the next one. I went from initially just wanting to see if I could survive / complete them to now wanting to get out there and ROCK them. It's become a challenge (a fun one) to see if I can do better and better with every event.

Eedf46c82d0356d1d46dda5f9782ef36

(4464)

on January 13, 2012
at 08:21 PM

Awesome Ali! Be warned - these things are addicting. I started with one small one and now pre-register for at least 6 events a year.

61b801de5dc345b557cd4623d4a4f26b

(2682)

on January 13, 2012
at 08:17 PM

I'm signed up for a Warrior Dash in March...I'm excited and nervous!

2
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:12 PM

Oh shit, just pretend you are being chased by a panther!

77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on January 13, 2012
at 03:00 PM

Leopard is good- love the spots! They are both fast and motivational.

Dfada6fe4982ab3b7557172f20632da8

(5332)

on January 13, 2012
at 02:28 PM

Sometimes when I've misjudged my sprint distance and I'm wanting to slow up before the end that's exactly what I do! Ok, it's actually usually a leopard, but it works!

2
279a524a1e97b58769e9ad9d4ae36068

(20)

on January 12, 2012
at 10:34 PM

I think short term goals are incredibly important. If you put a broad number or idea of what you want to do, it's harder to constantly receive that reinforcement you might need to continue working out.

Setting weekly or even daily goals are a lot more attainable and create consistent, positive personal feedback if you continue meeting or breaking your goals.

Finally, if you coincide your workouts with eating like Grok, it makes it so much easier (in my opinion). You'll feel better and have confidence to continue to work hard.

2
2c66c70d033e7ec05327026121d2ceb4

on January 12, 2012
at 10:07 PM

The motivation method that is met with almost universal success is to take a picture of yourself in your underwear.

It might hurt, but it works.

Once you get past the initial stage, i find that finding music that works for you and frequent goal setting and resetting is the best approach.

Fc891327db916c10347b008acde0daca

(1022)

on January 12, 2012
at 10:19 PM

+1 for the music! My biggest help in working out, good, fast (house/techno) music!

7b439bc3c2033329fc3c64937825ac6c

(255)

on January 17, 2012
at 03:37 PM

unfortunately (?) I actually like the way I look naked. ;) I'm just looking for muscle tone...

1
Bdf98e5a57befa6f0877f978ba09871c

on January 13, 2012
at 05:24 PM

For me a big factor is being up early, which in turn means going to bed earlier. If I wake up refreshed, I'm totally willing to go row or lift almost immediately. I find it helps too that if I work out to a certain point, I know I will tire myself a bit, which then means that my day of walking all over the city will work out cramps and I get good sleep that night.

Another motivating factor, I'll admit, is my mate. Things are presently long distance, and it's nice to show her progress on my muscle definition every time I see her. :-)

1
7cbdd4e8eedba06368d4766e6c0ef015

(320)

on January 13, 2012
at 03:30 PM

I have been a life long exercise avoider. It took some time to get me to love it, and now I exercise six times a week.

  1. Dress for success - The first thing I put on in the morning is my exercise gear. It's what I wear most of the time now. Got some really cute stuff. And since I have it on, no excuse like having to put shoes and socks on or putting on the stretchy stuff to distract me (I'm seriously ADD).

  2. Do what you love - For me, it's Pilates and weight training. After an hour of either one of those, but especially the Pilates, I feel so amazing! If I don't start my day with the Pilates, everyone suffers!

  3. Mix it up - I do a lot of different things to keep my body moving. Pilates is four times a week, weight training three times a week, I walk the dog twice a day, I have a rowing machine that I use while watching TV, I bellydance, and I mix it all up six to seven days a week.

  4. Get good support - I have friends at the gym who I tasked with stalking me if I missed a class. I have created a circle of friends who are all about fitness. I eliminated the whiners, nay-sayers and all the toxic people in my life, that sucked all my energy from me.

  5. Get enough sleep - When I don't sleep well, I overeat and I miss exercising. Every damn time! So, I go to bed and get up at the same time every day, just so I can make the exercise happen.

I have to do ALL of that to keep the exercise thing happening for me. For me, it was about creating perfect conditions that would support me doing this.

5e6a6f5c0fd3ab048f81c0a500206f41

(956)

on January 13, 2012
at 04:20 AM

perfect! love this video! seriously....no excuses!

1
E48146ad243fab742e69d10b633e05d6

on January 13, 2012
at 12:49 AM

Caffeine please and thank you ;-)

01f8f38776d21288b04d9e6657dea44c

(5)

on January 13, 2012
at 12:56 AM

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_7I7iasuIdw&feature=pyv

1
9b9b328e50e6fa3afd1ee68495a8bac2

(147)

on January 13, 2012
at 12:34 AM

It's not the most 'tangible' advice, but the thing that seriously works for me is visualising how much better you will feel after you're done exercising. It's a definite, given, 100% fact that when you walk back through the door all (organic) beet faced and sweaty you will be surfing on endorphins and any laziness you felt before will have dissipated.

I like the idea of tricking yourself into 'just going for 10 minutes' too - tell yourself it's only going to be a little jaunt round the block. Go somewhere pretty in nature and just appreciate the time out. Once you're there, do some sprints (they're great because it's only such a small 'burst' of energy and you can 'quit' anytime - I'm willing to bet you can pep-talk yourself into doing 10!). Drop and do some push-ups. Make a fun little circuit for yourself using squats, lunges, burpees, pull-ups. The beauty is, it's small little exercised that don't seem like such a huge effort! And very efficient in terms of heart rate and intensity.

You could also try roping friends in; nothing hurts as much when you have someone to train with. Planning when you're going to fit in time for exercise is also key. Do it first thing in the morning before your brain has a chance to rebel! Know it's your 'lazy' mind trying to get you to sit on the couch, but that guy knows nothing! Show him who's boss!

End; over-enthusiastic pep-talk!

1
A942dbc90fe12f7f90744a68f9f223e2

(249)

on January 12, 2012
at 11:44 PM

Sell your car. The rest is self-evident. (I actually just junked mine)

Find a trail, park, forest, etc. where you might enjoy the great outdoors and walk, jog, bike, birdwatch, shoot photos, feed the deer, ....whatever you find enjoyable.

I also find audiobooks great to listen to when engaging in less strenuous forms of exercise.

0
Dfada6fe4982ab3b7557172f20632da8

(5332)

on January 13, 2012
at 04:26 PM

For the most part, having made sure that I'm taking care of myself food and sleep wise, I remind myself that if I don't get out and do it as planned, then there's no time when it'll feel right. The less I do, the less I want to do so if I don't stick to the plan it'll only get harder.

Also, I don't want to waste all the effort put in to the rest of my lifestyle by having a bad week. Having the occasional bad day to catch up with things if necessary is good, but unless there's a good reason for me to be tired after 8 hours sleep, I'm getting out of that bed on the second day.

0
Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on January 12, 2012
at 10:01 PM

Please delete this post. Thanks.

Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on January 12, 2012
at 10:05 PM

I do apologise for doubling the page-load time with that post.

Ca2c940a1947e6200883908592956680

(8574)

on January 13, 2012
at 03:16 PM

Apparently this post was about as motivational as a bran muffin.

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