Are you struggling to get motivated to exercise?
If yes, it may be time for some soul searching.
Your intuition can guide you to a fitness routine that helps infuse your body with confidence, strength, and health.
You don’t need to whip out a calculator to get more motivated; it’s a matter of the heart.
Exercise should not feel like a chore most of the time. It should feel freeing and empowering and help you get out of your head.
Whether the reluctance to work out is due to fatigue, stress, depression, lack of enjoyment, or not enough time, you can take actions that yield results.
Exercise is just something you do; it’s not something you need to get motivated to do.
Here are my top tips after staying consistent with exercise for over 20 years and helping thousands of men get more consistent too:
1. Craft Your Active Identity
Are you an active person? What does being an active person mean to you? Suppose you don’t consider yourself an active person. In that case, affirming “I am an active person” can create habits aligned with this identity. It can feel fake initially, but once you believe it, it becomes real. Achieving the results you want is 100% mindset – not 80% nutrition, 20% exercise. It took me many years of empowering men to get lean & strong bodies to fully understand this!
2. Change The Words You Use
I do some training at least 5 days a week. Notice I didn’t say “workout” 5 days a week. Psychologically, that can be a barrier for me. I like the word “training.” I’m continuously making small improvements as my body evolves. I have some ideas about specific milestones to achieve, but it’s an evolution. Maybe your word is train, training, movement, fitness, physical fitness, activity, exercise, physical training, or possibly workout. The words we use and how we feel about them significantly impact our behavior. If you say a word with dread or despair, you will not keep whatever it is consistent.
3. Remember “Every Setback Is A Stepping Stone”
This is a mantra and a core BuiltLean belief. We all face challenges in our lives. The truth is that if we put something before our own health, we sacrifice that thing and our own health. It’s the health paradox. If you fall off track or an obstacle comes your way, it’s ok. Learn from the experience. Find the silver lining. It’s time to become more understanding by changing the “all or nothing” mindset.
4. Create A Visualization
Do you have a picture in your mind of how you want your body to look and feel? Let’s dig deeper. Answer the following questions about your visualization:
Since you have a more precise and detailed image of your visualization, imagine it often. Feel the feelings of having it already in your body. Your outward actions will start to reflect this visualization you have in your mind.
5. Put Skin In The Game
Our bodies are homeostatic organisms that are resistant to change. It can be challenging to change our patterns of thinking. Changing our identity can also create psychological stress that may cause headaches, sickness, and other frustrations. Putting skin in the game helps you commit to the new version of yourself you are creating to break through old patterns and beliefs that may be holding you back. “Skin in the game” can mean investing in a body transformation system, putting money on the line if you don’t reach your goal, or doing a challenge with friends.
Goals & Plan
6. Create a SMART Goal
Consider creating a smart, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time-bound goal. The vision of this goal is exciting to you and feels good. If you have a weight loss goal, you can break your goal down into weekly goals like losing 1lb per week and tracking with weekly weigh-ins. You may also consider tracking other metrics like sets, reps, weight, # of workouts.
7. Create Reasons Why Your Goal is Important to You
The deeper and more emotional the reason your goal is important to you, the better. Maybe it’s to be an example for others, to stay active with your kids, or even not stick yourself with needles every day if you develop diabetes. You can view this list of 25 benefits of exercise to make your reasons even more compelling.
8. Schedule Your Workouts
“If you talk about it, it’s a dream. If you envision it, it’s possible, but if you schedule it, it’s real.” This is a powerful quote by transformation coach Tony Robbins. If you use a calendar to manage your schedule (and your life), block out the time you will do your exercise each week. Because exercise is foundational to how you look and feel, it has to be a “must” in your schedule. An unbreakable commitment and not a should. To make this even easier, you can do 10-minutes of exercise first thing when you wake up every day.
9. Know What, When, & Where To Workout Each Week
Scheduling your workouts is very powerful, but we can take this a step further. Establish what you will do and where you will do it. You have a specific workout you will do for the time you have blocked out in your calendar. And you know where you will do it. If you know what you are doing specifically, where, and when, the probability of consistency increases dramatically. Maybe you simplify your exercise into one 10-minute routine every morning during the week.
10. Track Your Progress
If you don’t track your progress, you will have no idea if you are on the path towards reaching your goals. Also, you may not connect your actions to positive benefits you are experiencing without realizing it. It’s ok if you don’t show much progress initially. Like a scientist in a lab, dispassionately assess the feedback and adjust your plan accordingly. Over time, seeing your weight go down, your energy levels increase, or any other positive change can be a huge motivator.
I hope some of these tips resonate with you.
At the end of the day, you shouldn’t need to get motivated to exercise. It must be a part of who you are.
Some form of exercise whether it’s yoga, pilates, walking, weight-lifting, running, surfing, or calisthenics (to list a few examples) can help you stay fit & feel great.
If you’re struggling with exercise motivation, take a step back, take a deep breath, and trust your gut about what exercise you want to do regularly. Then evolve from there.
You can look and feel great with all forms of exercise!