There are many reasons why we should exercise and there are many more than a healthy body weight. Sport also helps to reduce blood pressure, bad cholesterol and triglycerides , it strengthens bones, reduces the risk of cancer , help fight depression, reduce stress, add self-confidence and it can even improve our sex life.
Unfortunately, all these facts sometimes do not motivate us enough to go to the gym and even though we all know that sports is good for us… we still lack motivation to exercise. And, trust me, I’ve had days (and I bet that most of you had it too) when I’ve struggled with motivation to exercise. But I have made a list of things that really have helped me to change my lifestyle and love the sport.
One of the biggest reasons to fail for the beginners is unrealistic goals. They set the most unbelievable ones and often can not reach them . Do not start trying to exercise for an hour every day. Instead, start with 20-30 minutes of a selected sport 2-3 times a week.
Keep track of your progress
Do not forget to keep the track of your progress regardless whether you would use a modern web-based tool or good old notebook. Seeing your progress will motivate you even more – it could also be an idea to take pictures of yourself to see visible results so that you could compare them over time.
Do not expect perfection
Another threat for lack of motivation is the ” all or nothing ” type of thinking , which translates to give up. You have to realize that there will be days when you will have do a breaks from sport (e.g. you are too busy, too tired…) and you have to deal with it. But be sure that these breaks do not become an excuse to give up.
In order to avoid injuries be sure to do warm up and/or do some stretching exercises. Do not force your workouts.
Do not compare yourself with others
We’ve all seen them – those trained bodies with no fat, gracefully strolling the gym with a Barbie – sized shorts and sport bras . Do not compare yourself with them. Forget them. Release them . But do not let them distract you from your goals. Think of a think, happy and strong you as your final objective.
The best motivation for me, so far, is training with someone else. We are talking about spouses, partners, friends – everybody who can support you. It is always easier to go to a workout training when a friend of yours is going as well. If that does not work for you, hire a coach.
It is important to find the sport that you truly love. When you are around so many sports clubs and studies, it’s easy to find something you like. You have a pretty wide choice in Denmark, which lies somewhere from aerobics to Zumba.
If you do not like sports clubs, go for a walk around the neighborhood. If you are motivated by the company, enjoy tean sports together with your friends: some movement has never done too bad!
Plan your time
Do everything you can to remove the barriers to exercise . If you are under time pressure, do not waste the trip to the gym – try exercising at home. If you are too tired to exercise end of the day , set your alarm earlier in the morning and work out.
Forget the past
Do not let previous bad experience you languish. Maybe you were not the sportiest kid at school but its time to forget it now. It was a long time ago. Now, your main goal is to exercise in order to stay healthy and enjoy life.
Reward yourself for your efforts – not a piece of chocolate cake, but rather something pleasant though not edible, such as a good movie at the cinema, nice smelling flowers or a new garment from a clothing store.
Your before picture
And finally it is so motivating to see visual results because often you don’t realize how far you’ve come. So, as slightly mentioned before, take pictures!
As Woody Allen once told “80 percent of success is showing up”. Keep up the good work and be proud of yourself!