Rediscover your exercise motivation with these ideas for freshening up trainer time.
You started off the year full of the joys of fitness and what you wanted to achieve. Your sports bra was your new favourite accessory and motivation was your middle name.
Now? Not so much.
If you are newly pregnant, you might be feeling tired and lethargic and are thinking of giving up on bump-friendly exercise. Or perhaps as a busy mum, between toddler classes, work and general family goings on, you are finding it hard to stick to a workout routine. Try these ideas to help you get back on track.
Switch up your workout
Whether it’s the route you run, the machine you use at the gym or your iPod playlist, mix up your fitness regime to spark your interest again.
‘This benefits you physically, too,’ says personal trainer Phil Curtis. ‘It takes your body between four and six weeks to adapt to a type of exercise, so moving on after this means you give it a new challenge to reap the benefits from.’
Find a friend
Ask someone to work out with you – it’ll keep you going, according to UK research. Or join a local sports team so you have others relying on you – a great motivator when the sofa’s more appealing than your trainers.
‘Accountability is a huge factor in how successful you are fitness-wise,’ says Phil. ‘Plus, having a friend gives you support and you both understand the other’s goals.’
Record how you’re doing
Using an app such as MapMyRun to keep track of how you’re doing helps you celebrate the highs and understand any setbacks.
‘You need to see your progress and then if you perhaps don’t have the success you hoped one week, you can look back over it and work out why,’ says Phil.
Reassess your goals
If you’re lacking willpower, tap back into your original motivation.
‘So, if you want to lose weight, ask yourself why. Perhaps it’s to look better, so then ask yourself what that’ll improve in your life, and so on – it’s about digging through a few more layers,’ says Phil.
Mix up your fitness regime to spark your interest again
The next step is weighing up whether the goal is worth the sacrifice. Be honest with yourself about whether you really want to make those diet tweaks or skip sofa nights for a power walk.
‘This helps you refocus and decide whether your challenge might need some adjusting,’ says Phil.
Set smaller steps
When you’re juggling workouts with general family chaos, it’s no wonder time to exercise falls down the priority list. So, start with an easy target to get into a regular routine, and then build from there.
‘It could be two walks or one workout a week – whatever works for you,’ says Phil. ‘It gives you some consistency and means you’re not beating yourself up because you haven’t achieved something that might actually be a bit unrealistic right now.’
That way, any extras you manage to fit in are a bonus.
How do you stay motivated when it comes to fitness? Let us know on the comments board below.