February 16, 2013 by mybattlebuddyfitness
Written by Melissa Eisner
We’ve all been there before, either sitting in bed, at our desk at work, or even in our cars, having that debate with ourselves about whether or not we should get in a workout. Should I stay or should I go now? Feels like that Clash song is always running through our heads. And I’ll admit, I’m as good as anyone at making excuses for not working out. I’m tired, I didn’t sleep well, it has been a long day at work, I have too much to do tonight, there’s a happy hour after work, the list can go on and on for cancelling. And for postponement that leads to cancelling? I woke up late, I’ll go after work. It’s too hot out right now, I’ll go when it cools off later. It’s too cold out right now, I’ll go when it warms up later. I’ll go after I pick up the kids from school. I’ll go after dinner. No matter the excuse, we figure out a way to not get in that workout.
So I figured I’d share some tricks I use to help make sure that I get in those workouts, even when I don’t want to.
1) Workout in the morning – I know, ‘I’m not a morning workout person.’ Yeah, neither am I. My body is tired and asleep and doesn’t want to get out of bed. But when you make it your routine as part of the morning, like brushing your teeth or taking a shower, you’ll be hard pressed not to get a workout in. Especially when you set your alarm specifically to get up for a workout. At that point, you’re awake, so you’ll likely get up and workout. Sure, you’ll negotiate maybe 5 or 10 minutes of extra time in bed, but after that, it’s out of bed and getting your sweat on. In addition to feeling better, working out in the morning will put you with the legions of successful and productive people who make this part of their routine. Research shows that the most successful people get in the activities that are most important to them first thing in the morning. It is the one time of day where you are likely to have complete control over what happens and what you do or do not do. Read more here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/meghancasserly/2012/06/13/success-how-to-make-yourself-a-morning-person/
2) Tell yourself you are only going to workout for 10 minutes – This is a great trick for when you don’t feel like working out. Self-talk into going for just a 10 minute walk or going over to the gym and getting in 10 minutes of cardio. 10 minutes seems like nothing, it isn’t a big commitment and your brain is going to be like yeah, I can do 10 minutes, and then I’m done with it. But once you get there and get going, you’ll find that after 10 minutes you are thinking, gee, I’m just getting warmed up, I can go for 20 minutes more. Before you know it, you will have a 30 minute cardio session. It’s a trick, but it always works when I am feeling like I don’t want to workout.
3) Have a workout buddy – I cannot tell you how much this helps keep you accountable for your workouts. Whether it is a friend, you spouse, your significant other, your kids, or even your co-workers, having someone that you are working out with almost guarantees that you are going to keep your commitment. Here’s an example: I needed to go to the gym to get in a run (since I’m training for a half marathon), and it was a cold day in Ft. Leonard Wood. My schedule had been thrown completely off for the morning. We made it to the gym, we were in the parking lot, and I looked over and said let’s just bag this workout and go have lunch. My buddy looked over at me and said, we’re here, we are not going to just leave. We’ll go in and workout for 30 minutes and go home. Without someone there to talk me into it, I probably would have bailed on my workout.
4) Get a personal trainer – Don’t have any friends that like to exercise? Get a personal trainer (like www.mybattlebuddyfitness.com if you are in the Ft. Leonard Wood area for example). Personal training appointments will have you at the gym (you’ve already paid for it), and you are going to learn great new exercises that you can do on the days when you are not with your trainer. The change up in the workouts that you do on that one day are probably going to be enough to inspire you to workout on other days without the trainer. Or, the threat of going back to your personal trainer in a week could motivate you to workout so you are not sore for days once you meet with your trainer.
5) Bring your workout clothes with you to work – And change at work before you walk out of the office. Having your workout clothes on is sort of like putting on your sexy underwear. The mind body connection happens, and you are ready / excited for what is going to happen next. You’re already thinking that you are going to workout, you’re ready to do it, so when you get in that car, you’ll drive to the gym or the park instead of going home.
6) Sign up for classes – Nothing like the power of the dollar to make you get off your duff and get your heart pumping. I’ll sign up for classes where I have to pay to attend in advance, so that way the cheapskate in me says, well, you’ve paid for it, you better go do it. Classes in the morning are especially good for me. Like I have said, working out in the morning is tough, but for some reason, when I look around a room of 20 people all doing bootcamp along with me, I feel invigorated.
7) Pick a different workout for the day – Let’s say you are following a schedule, which always helps me when I want to go to the gym (I’m a creature of habit). But you look at that schedule, and you really don’t want to do what you have planned for that day. If that is going to keep you from going to the gym, then change the routine. Planned a run but not feeling it? Go for a bike ride. Supposed to swim but the thought of putting on your swimsuit has you down? Jump on the elliptical. Whatever gets you going, make that your plan for the day.
Added by Elisabeth Meany…
I have only a small snippet to add to this one. Melissa did a great job of sharing some awesome tips and tricks that even us pros use every now and again.
8) When I REALLY don’t want to work out (yes, it happens a few times a month for me too), I try and remind myself how I feel when I am FINISHED with the workout. Don’t think about how you feel during those first 10 minutes (those are always the hardest, while your body gets warmed up), think about how you feel during those last 10 minutes and 10 minutes after the workout. Even when it’s not your best workout, it always feels like an accomplishment. Every time I try and convince myself to skip the workout, I remind myself of just how much better I feel when I am done. And I remind myself of how awful I feel when I don’t work out.
Work is something that you HAVE to do. Cleaning the house, cooking meals, caring for your children…Those are all non-negotiables. Working out, however, is one of those things that many of us have come to view as “just a bonus.” If it doesn’t get done, oh well, and if it does, even better. The truth is that you’ve got to start making the daily workout a non-negotiable. It truly will make you a better a person in every way.