I Just Don’t Feel Like Working Out…
It’s a very common saying that everyone has said at some point. And although most people would agree with the statement that “working out is good for us,” and there are a whole whack of reasons to incorporate some sort of fitness routine, it’s perplexing how much we still just don’t feel like it.
So how do you motivate yourself to workout?
Exercise is so important—for health, self-confidence, looks, etc. The list goes on. So what you really need in order get over this “I just don’t feel like working out feeling” is more awareness and a little bit of leverage. This is what you need to do.
1 – Ask yourself why you want to work out
To do this, you need to become highly aware of why you even want to work out in the first place. We are all driven by different reasons, so knowing yours is paramount during the difficult times when you aren’t as motivated. For myself, I am driven by the reasons exercise is good for me, but I also still have some vanity and want to look good.
Both reasons can be powerful in getting to the gym, and I can focus on them when “I don’t feel like working out.” This usually helps me get to the gym with no issues.
2 – Develop fitness awareness via apps and recording
Record your reps and sets, and have a sheet of paper with you to take notes during your workout. If you don’t want to write it out, get a fitness app like MyFitnessPal. Taking notes gives you a better understanding of what you’re doing in the gym, but more importantly, it gives you something tangible that’s waiting for you when you don’t feel like going. It’s like having a reminder that you already did all of this work, so why quit now?
You can also develop food awareness as well. Check out Weight Loss Diary – 4 Lessons Learned to get an understanding of what recording your progress is all about so that you can become more aware and eventually improve.
3 – Leverage yourself using your friends or the internet
If you are that person who still has issues with drive, take a look online. There are lots of leveraging applications that will help you stay driven. Some will very simply take money out of your account for every time that you don’t go to the gym! Others are far more sinister and will post embarrassing photos to your linked social media account.
Another option, which may be more effective, is to get a friend to hold onto your money and if you don’t make it to a certain goal, they will keep the money or donate to charity.
4 – Dial in your attention
When you are feeling great and in the zone, you are excited and have nothing pulling your attention away from the fact that you want to go work out. But when you are feeling tired at the end of the day and the couch is calling your name, your brain will start to side with all reasons why the couch seems like a better idea: it’s comfortable, it’s easy etc. If you can take that attention and focus it on a goal that truly drives you (health, looks, etc), then you will harness its power to get things done.
It was described to me once that we have our foot on the gas and on the break all day long. It’s on the gas for wanting to go to the gym and knowing that it is good for us, but at the same time it’s on the brake for not wanting to put in the effort.
We need to consciously be aware of this dichotomy and drive our foot on only the gas pedal. If our sole focus is putting our intention towards what we truly want, it becomes difficult to even think about the brake (ie feelings of laziness or procrastination)
5 – Set up a killer routine
If you workout in the morning, develop a routine that makes it easy to get to the gym.
They say that Barack Obama wears only one colour of suit in the morning to decrease the number of choices he needs to make throughout the day. That’s because humans have a limited capacity for choice—and in this world, we are inundated with choices. So, to overcome this, we need to minimize our choices before we get to the gym. To do so:
- Have your workout preplanned.
- Have your bag already packed in the morning so you can grab-and-go.
- Either make or plan your breakfast the night before so it’s ready when you wake up.
You want to look at every single decision and choice that needs to be made in the morning and make it beforehand.
Slowly, this will turn into a routine and going to the gym will just happen. It won’t be a stress-inducing event that you struggle with anymore.
6 – Workout on the way to work
Yes, it is possible to get in a good workout while heading to your job! Kill two birds with one stone by riding your bike to work. You will likely get through traffic just as fast, get in a great workout, and get some much-needed sunshine and fresh air.
This is perfect if you are the type who likes to lift in the gym but can’t stand doing any cardio. Try biking for a week and see if you feel happier and accomplished at the end of it all. Guess what… you will.
7 – Join a group fitness class
The social aspect of fitness should always be utilized to help you maintain your health. One of the biggest ways to increase the likelihood of you working out is to find others who are doing fitness too. Others can hold us accountable every time we do not wish to go to the gym.
More often than not, joining group fitness will make you want to go to the gym without thinking about backing out. Other people can create a strong social responsibility in us. No one wants to be seen as a quitter who doesn’t follow through, so that is helpful when setting up fitness dates.
Plus, making new fitness friends in a group class is a great way to increase value for you, since other fit people will be asking you to do fitness-oriented activities.