How to get yourself motivated to exercise
By Ashley DePaulis, Owner of ASH Fitness & Founder of The Inner Athlete
Exercise always seems like a good idea until it’s actually time to put on your shoes and get out the door. I bet this is usually the point you start to question why the heck you were so pumped up to exercise in the first place. Then you begin formulating a list of reasons to justify your workout raincheck.
Why is it that motivation tends to easily slip away?
I’m going to let you in on a little secret. It’s the antidote to your fitness blues and it is Your Inner Athlete. Whether you consider yourself an athlete or not is beside the point because EVERYONE has an Inner Athlete.
Your Inner Athlete is your story. It’s physical, personal and connected to the experience of your unique human spirit.
If you are struggling with getting motivated to exercise, there is a good chance you are missing the feeling of energy, strength and aliveness that are hallmarks of being in sync with Your Inner Athlete. Being in touch with your own Inner Athlete provides clarity and when you have clarity, motivation begins to appear organically.
Before connecting with your Inner Athlete, it is completely normal to harbor feelings of hesitation that keep you away from exercise. You want to wait until you “feel better” or “feel motivated” before you get started. Perhaps you believe there is a right way and a wrong way to exercise and you fear you will be embarrassed or, even worse, get injured if you do it wrong. Many times you are comparing yourself to others, or a past version of yourself you are unable to keep up with.
These kinds of mindsets have the ability to squash your enthusiasm before you even get started. This is why it is so important before focusing on your action plan, you first gain clarity on the “why” behind the exercise. Are you working to heal an injury? To lose weight? Are you training for a marathon?
Whatever your reason, when you are crystal clear on what you want, you will be focused and driven to achieve your goal. And that my friends creates motivation.
Once you have clarity and a readjusted mindset, it is time to channel your motivation into action. How can you do that?
- Realistically gauge your current abilities. Always start right where you are. Remaining present allows you to push past your ceiling based on the here and now. It makes exercising more enjoyable because you are holding yourself to realistic expectations.
- Structure workouts in a way you find enjoyable. One thing is for sure, if you do not find your workout fun and satisfying, it will not get you moving. Know yourself and what gets you going. If you like being with people, find a gym or workout club where you can exercise with other people. If you like being outside, find ways to exercises outside. Whatever it is that gets you excited find ways to incorporate it into your workouts.
- Find someone or something to keep you accountable. Even elite athletes who have laser focused clarity need accountability. If they need it, so do you. Depending on what your goals are, find a coach, workout buddy, group fitness program, online fitness tracker, etc. to help you stay on track and keep you moving towards your goals.
- Be consistent but flexible. Do something to work towards your goal every single day, but pay attention to Your Inner Athlete and be flexible. Some days you are going to be ready for hard work, but other days Your Inner Athlete may be screaming at you to get some sleep, or hydrate. Listen. The fastest way to achieving your goal is to consistently and harmoniously work with your body.
The truth is, you are not going to get through life without experiencing a lack of motivation at some point. Whether the struggle is past or present tense, experiencing a lack of motivation can be downright depressing. It is hard not to show up in your life and in your training as the lean, vibrant and powerful version of you that you dream of being. You want to feel good in your body and feel energetic. Yet for whatever reason, you feel hesitant. Just remember, when you start lacking the motivation to get your body moving, put the brakes on and clarify what you are working towards, because that will most certainly help you to bust through your workout blues.
Ashley DePaulis, is the owner of ASH Fitness and Founder of The Inner Athlete. She helps everyday athletes master their minds after an injury or health challenge so they can get back into action. She offers one:one accountability and training, and transformation through her group program – The Inner Athlete Advantage. To learn your unique pathway to sustainable health and motivation, along with the mental and physical tool set needed to navigate life’s adversities connect with Ashley and The Inner Athlete community on Facebook or visit ASH Fitness online to learn more.