If you’re struggling to get yourself out of bed and into the gym, it can be disheartening to look at those who seem to have no problem getting their Working Out every day. But there are ways you can work out more often and make it a habit you’ll never want to break. Use these six tips as your guide, and see how much easier it becomes to stay on track with your fitness goals. You’ll be glad you did!
1) Set Goals
What’s your biggest reason for wanting to start working out? Is it to lose weight, or to tone your muscles? Maybe you want to get fitter so you can play with your kids or walk upstairs without huffing and puffing. Whatever your motivation, setting muscleblaze goals is essential for keeping yourself on track and building healthy habits that will last long after those first few weeks of hardcore workouts.
2) Know your Motivation
Before you can establish working out as a habit, you need to understand why you want it. Maybe your goal is weight loss, health or even just looking good naked. Whatever it is, pin down what specifically would drive you to work out regularly. If your why isn’t strong enough, there’s no way that your routine will be sustainable for long periods of time. Without motivation, an exercise plan will only last in short bursts before falling apart again and again. Once you know what makes working out meaningful for you, write that down and put it somewhere visible when deciding how often and where to work out each day.
3) Track your Progress
Accountability is an important part of making your gym sessions as productive as possible. It can be hard to stay motivated if you’re working out on your own, so look for ways to hold yourself accountable. This might include going with a friend, tracking your progress in a workout journal or even setting reminders on your phone that go off at scheduled times throughout your day. When it comes time for you to head out, you’ll have no excuse not to go.
4) Exercise with Friends
One of the most common reasons people give for not working out is that they have no one to do it with. Exercising in pairs or groups makes workouts more fun, encouraging you to get moving and less likely you’ll skip them (as research has shown). Find an exercise buddy—or make some new friends at your gym—and join in on group classes whenever possible. If you can’t find someone you know well enough to work out with, consider using a service like ActiveRoutes, which hooks up students and alumni with classmates near them who are looking for workout buddies. Or, if running isn’t your thing but biking is, head over to Bike Buddy NYC, where cycling enthusiasts seek others willing to hit New York City’s bike lanes solo.
5) Remind Yourself of the Consequences
We all know that working out is good for us, but our brains don’t always take heed. That’s why it helps to remind yourself of the real-life consequences of not working out. In other words, if you want to start getting in shape more regularly, it might help to think about how being fitter will improve your quality of life—and then make a pact with yourself never to put off exercise again. Sure, it sounds silly and obvious (hey, you already know exercise is good for you), but sometimes we need those reminders when we’re tempted by dessert or when we don’t feel like putting on pants and going outside.
6) Reward Yourself for the Workout
Just as you shouldn’t reward yourself with food, you shouldn’t reward yourself with physical activity. However, rewarding yourself with something that isn’t food-related can help encourage healthy behaviors that will benefit your body. So if you made it to an early morning workout class or stuck through on your high-intensity interval training routine, try buying a new pair of running shoes or splurging on a massage session.
It may seem silly, but when you make Muscleblaze goals part of your life, it becomes just as important as eating right and spending time with loved ones—and having tangible rewards like these will make working out much more enjoyable and meaningful. The result? You’re more likely to want to go back for another run or tough workout next time!