It's human nature to gravitate towards things we enjoy, things that make us feel good. On the flip side, we naturally try to avoid the things we find unpleasant or burdensome.
It's hard to stay motivated when you don't enjoy what you're doing. Therefore, if you want to make exercise a regular part of our life in the long term, it makes sense to do everything possible to make your workout routine as enjoyable as possible.
Here are some ways you can set up a workout routine you genuinely feel motivated about, so you naturally want to stick with it.
Work with your body's natural rhythm, not against it.
Some people love an early morning workout; other people find a morning routine impossible to stick with. On the other hand, some people perk up later in the evening and they prefer to schedule their workout for that time. Find what works for you, and work with your body's natural rhythm wherever possible. You'll enjoy your workout more since it will feel less burdensome, which means you're far more likely to stick with it.
Get a personal trainer.
If you're not accustomed to working out, the gym can be an intimidating environment. A personal trainer can help you get oriented and comfortable in that environment. A trainer can also work with you to come up with a workout routine that challenges you, but that's also suitable for your fitness level so you don't feel overwhelmed. This can make all the difference in holding to the program, as you'll know you're on the right track, but you won't feel overwhelmed and then get discouraged. A trainer can also work with you to tweak your program as your fitness level improves over time.
Connect with a workout buddy/community.
For many people, the secret to enjoying their workout is simply having company, as the camaraderie provides additional benefits over and above the exercise. Having company, whether it's a workout buddy or peers in a fitness class, helps with motivation by providing some accountability, as you know there's someone else expecting you to show up. The support can also help when you're simply having a rough day and feeling tempted step away from your program.
Find something you genuinely enjoy doing.
If you hate jogging, it's going to be really hard to force yourself to keep up with a daily morning run. If you don't really like going to the gym, you'll have a hard time dragging yourself there every day after work. Instead of forcing yourself to do something that's not really a fit, find an activity you genuinely enjoy doing. You're far more likely to stick with it, because it won't feel like a chore.
There's a workout option for everyone, no matter what your personal preference may be. Love the outdoors? Walk, jog, hike, or cycle. Love being around people? Team sports are a great way get in shape while having fun and making new friends as well. Do you consider yourself to be a total introvert? There are plenty of digital/online programs by athletes and other qualified health professionals that you can do in the privacy of your home.
Invest in proper workout gear.
You don't have to wait until you're in perfect shape to invest in some good-looking, high-quality workout gear! Find some proper workout pieces that you think are flattering on you now, and that you feel great wearing. You'll boost your confidence and reap the psychological benefits of "looking the part" when you put on your exercise clothes.
You'll also feel more comfortable physically when you're wearing high-quality apparel, e.g.: moisture-wicking fabrics, good-fitting running shoes, etc. This will contribute to your overall performance, making your workouts more successful, and leaving you feeling even more motivated.
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