The Secret To Finding Fitness Motivation
Plenty of exercise articles discuss resting between fitness days for muscle recovery. That’s not the kind of exercise-related recovery that most people struggle with. The pile of clothes or layer of dust that coats some high-quality exercise machines did not magically generate itself because somebody needed to rest their hamstrings. Exercise usually gets put off because of family responsibilities, busy work schedules, and, of course, simple procrastination. At the same time, few habits can offer as many benefits as regular physical activity, so everybody should make time to take control of their health.
Recovery From Exercise Procrastination
So many people battle with exercise procrastination that it’s obviously important to dig deep sometimes to remember all of the lifelong benefits that an investment of just a few minutes or regular exercising will provide. These tested suggestions will help motivate the busiest people to get back on the track, treadmill, or other type of exercise equipment.
Employ Simple Psychology
People may say they exercise because they logically understand that workouts can help them enjoy longer and healthier lives. In truth, emotion motivates most folks just as much as reason does. Remembering positive experiences associated with exercise often provides more motivation than any number of logical arguments.
Surprisingly, simply thinking about any kind of good or bad exercise experiences will help. A recent scientific study from the National Library of Medicine backs up this claim. A survey asked one group of students to list either a negative or positive memory associated with exercise. The control group did not get asked about memories they associated with exercise at all.
After eight days, the researchers asked both groups to report upon their exercise since the first survey. As many would expect, the respondents who reported good memories associated with working out also exercised the most. However, the researchers were more surprised to learn that people who reported unfavorable memories of working out still exercised more than the control group.
Certainly, people can help recover their motivation by remembering how good they felt when they achieved a fitness goal; however, even thinking about less positive memories can help some folks overcome them and try again.
Take Control Of A Good Fitness Routine
Some folks may have encountered obstacles to their fitness goals in the past. When they revisit these poor experiences, they may find ways to overcome them. For instance, they may have used a high-impact treadmill that aggravated joints and would not encounter these kinds of problems with a low-impact exercise bike. Perhaps, they had simply not bothered to buy good shoes, so their feet and joints ached more than they needed to.
In other cases, an exercise bike may have been too large or small, proven difficult to customize, or offered a low-quality experience for other reasons. In this case, it’s time to research and buy the right exercise bike or other fitness equipment. Recoup losses by selling the old piece of exercise equipment or donating it to a worthy charity.
Focus On Fitness And Not Fat
Certainly, lots of people exercise because they hope workouts will help them look better in skinny jeans, little black dresses, or bikinis. At the same time, that’s probably not the kind of motivation that will help most people stick to a lasting routine. Caring about how clothes or even swimming suits fit are examples of external motivations that mainly stem from pleasing other people.
For instance, research has shown that people who successfully battle such difficult problems as drug addiction will have a better chance to succeed because of internal and not external motivation. They have to want to fix the problem for their own sakes and can’t just rely upon pleasing their friends, family, or employers.
Similarly, people tend to develop and maintain good, regular habits out of a personal desire and not because they want to please others in a superficial way.
Here’s some internal motivation to focus upon developing good exercise habits for purely selfish reasons:
- The lack of physical activity is considered the fifth-ranked cause of premature death and sixth-ranked cause of disability in the United States.
- Health professionals consider the failure to exercise regularly as much of a high-risk health behavior as being obese, smoking, and drinking too much alcohol.
- Adding years to a life and just as important, life to years, should provide plenty of internal motivation.
According to Dr. Greger, the founder of the nonprofit called NutritionFacts.org, people should think of exercise as medicine. Even more, they should know that physical activity can help them avoid having to rely upon prescription drugs for many diseases that some people think are just normal conditions of aging. Dr. Greger has studied the medical literature and found that it’s impossible to argue that good fitness habits will help prevent such serious health conditions as heart disease, strokes, diabetes, and even depression. Exercise doesn’t just help people look good – it also makes them feel better and live longer.
Does this mean that only selfish people take time to exercise? Certainly, people tend to retain good habits when they want to please themselves, but those good habits also help keep them healthy for their family and friends. They can also set a great example for the people around them.
Make Exercise Fun And Rewarding
Yes, this article just discussed the fact that regular workouts provide plenty of their own rewards. Still, it takes time to see progress sometimes. If people can’t enjoy the activity for its own sake right away, they might offer yourself a little more encouragement in the form of daily rewards.
Some fitness enthusiasts have suggested such motivating incentives as adding a dollar or two to a tip jar to fund a night out or a professional massage. Another great suggestion consists of rewarding each minute of exercise with a minute of free time to use reading, watching videos, or simply doing nothing at all.
Of course, exercise sessions always seem to pass faster when they are shared. If possible, engage a spouse or another family member to share exercise time, hold each other accountable, and enjoy a social experience. Families can even create fun competitions that reward effort and allow the winners to choose a movie, restaurant, or their favorite home-cooked meal.
Find An App For That
Celebrities can afford to hire personal trainers to make sure they stick to their fitness routine. Almost anybody can afford a fitness app that will function almost like a personal trainer that can travel around in a pocket. For instance, the iFit® gives people access to personal coaching in many different aspects of fitness, including nutrition, healthy sleep, and of course, exercise.
These coaches will make sure their program users know how to use their equipment correctly and progress towards their goals. They can even connect folks with ways and places to maintain fitness when they travel. Best of all, they will offer encouragement for folks who don’t feel like exercising and personal congratulations after goals have been met.
Learn more about the benefits that the iFit® can offer anybody who wants to get fit.
Think of Exercise As The Best Medicine
Along with a healthy diet, regular physical activity can help people look better, live longer, enjoy their lives more, and even avoid or mitigate major health problems. Good diets also matter, but anybody who has lost or maintained their weight knows that exercise provides that extra boost that allows for quicker results and a little more margin for dietary errors and cheats.
While exercise can provide bountiful rewards on its own, even the most enthusiastic fitness buffs may let stress, fatigue, or simple procrastination overcome them sometimes. It’s good to know that athletes and even doctors have researched the emotional cues and even technology that can help other folks stick to their schedules and enjoy a fit life.