Wish you were a gym rat? One of those folks who loved to hit the gym, hit the pavement and, well, HIIT it? Well, researchers have been studying the psychology of motivation for a looong time now, and they’ve learned a lot about what works and what doesn’t when it comes to making a habit of exercise. We partnered with NordicTrack (which, by the way, guys: have you seen this — it’s a treadmill like running outside!) to pare all that research down and pick out the tricks that really work, so that you can use them and start getting hooked on exercise fast. Try ’em!
1. Connect With Your Why
We are HUGE proponents of finding — and then connecting with — your “why” every day. Why do you want to be healthy and fit? Why do you deserve to make time for workouts? Why are you worth taking care of? Get really honest with yourself and answer those deep questions, and then, every morning, remind yourself of your whys. Finding your deep inner motivation (and everyone’s is a little different!) and keeping it top of mind will go a long way in helping you to not just get motivated, but to stay motivated.
2. Give It Five
Does the idea of an hour … or even a 30-minute workout … have you saying UGH? Then go with one of our favorite motivational tricks: just commit to five minutes. Yes, five minutes! Hey, you can do anything for five minutes, and often times the hardest part of exercise is just getting started. Once you’re five minutes in, you probably won’t mind going for another five … and then another … and then another!
3. Grab a Bud
Whether it’s a friend, romantic partner, co-worker or family member, there is power in numbers! And people with workout buddies tend to not only work out more regularly but they also have more fun doing it (okay, so science doesn’t prove that second part, but we know it to be true!).
4. Set Yourself Up for Success
So much of being fit and healthy is just being prepared. Are you wearing shoes and clothes that allow you to move when the opportunity arises? Do you have access to the right equipment (like those cool treadmills we mentioned earlier)? Are you thinking positive you-can-do-it thoughts? Are you making time for you and your workouts? Just like anything, in the right healthy environment, you’re more likely to thrive!
5. Use a Mantra
We all have healthy and not-so-healthy days. And that’s cool. That’s life! But if you’re needing an extra motivational kick in the pants, pick a mantra that inspires you. Maybe it’s a quote or a line from a poem or an ad or a phrase you just really like — whatever it is, use it as often as needed.
What other motivational tricks work for you? Going along with the mantra idea, I like to play certain songs (like — confession — “2 Legit 2 Quit”) to get me going! —Jenn