It’s the end of summer and you’re about to give up on the New Year’s Resolution you’ve kept at all year — to stick to your workout. Don’t give up now! Maybe all you need is a little inspiration, and a few new ideas on how to stick to your workout, and I can help. You don’t want to lose your bikini bod now, do you? Of course not! Here are 18 tips to help you stick to your workout. Let’s go!
1. Get the Gear
If you’ve been able to stick to your workout since the beginning of the year, then chances are, it’s time to replace your old gear. Your trainers are probably shot, and it’s probably impossible to get the sweat out of your dingy sports top. Invest in a new pair of shoes and some new workout clothes… you probably need them anyway, and the fresh new gear may just inspire you to mess it up again!
2. Make a Playlist
If you haven’t updated your workout playlist in a while, it’s time to refresh that, too, along with your gear. Think of all the new songs that have come out since spring… add some new tunes to your playlist, and turn it up! My fave new workout song is “Madness” by Muse… I wonder how many extra calories you burn if you sing along?
3. Keep a Photo Handy
I remember what I used to look before I started working out? Two words: muffin top. Two other words: thunder thighs. If you’ve come a long way, too, then maybe another way to stick to your workout would be to keep a photo of yourself, pre-fitness, taped to the bathroom mirror, or tucked into your gym bag. One peek at my old muffin top, and I can’t get to the gym fast enough!
4. Set an Example
If you have children, this is perhaps the very best way to stick to your workout — let them see you sweat! Bring them along for the run, or the bike ride, or how ever you exercise to keep fit. Once you realize the truth — that you’re setting a stellar example for them — you’ll never want to stop!
5. Reward Yourself
Hey, I’m not above bribery, so when I’m feeling less-than-inspired to work out, I force myself to the gym with the thought of a new eyeliner or pair of shoes. It doesn’t have to be expensive, but I think this might work for you too… what better than a cute pair of wedges or that book you’ve been wanting to read to nudge you to stick to your workout for another week?
6. Change It up
After months of doing the same fitness routine, you’re probably bored. Perhaps it’s time to change things up a bit so you’ll stick to your workout! Take a new class. Learn a new exercise, or how to use a new piece of equipment. Make it a point to change your routine a bit every few months. Keep it fresh, keep it interesting, and you’re a lot more likely to stick to your workout!
7. Challenge Yourself
I’m not very competitive — except with myself. I don’t care if I finish last in a race, as long as I beat my own time from the last race I ran. That’s why I like to challenge myself to stick to my own fitness regimen. I want to be able to say I did more this week than I did the week before.
8. Challenge Your Boyfriend!
Ah, but maybe you are competitive! If that’s the case, then maybe you’ll be more inclined to stick to your workout if you figure out a way to make it a competition between you and your sig other. Who can stick to their workout the longest, the most consecutive days? Come up with a (safe) competition, and set a prize for you to both keep you motivated. Go, girl, go!
9. Set a Goal
Along with challenging yourself or your sweetheart, it helps to stick to your workout if you have a specific goal in mind. I want to be able to run a 5k in 30 minutes or less, and this very specific goal keeps me motivated to get to the track and the gym when I’m stuck to the couch.
10. Realize the Mental Health Benefits
Did you know that regular exercise can reduce the negative effects of stress, and can even ease depression? Once you realize the marvelous mental health benefits of exercise, especially if you suffer from depression or stress-related anxiety, this could help inspire you to stick to your workout, too.
11. Realize the Physical Health Benefits
Along with the mental health benefits of exercise, of course, there are the physical health benefits, like the greatly reduced risk of heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer. That doesn’t even include the gorgeous body and the increased stamina!
12. Pay for It in Advance
I’m thrifty, so if I pay for a gym membership in advance, I’m sure as heck going to use it! If you’re a budget-conscious girl like me, this trick might help keep you inspired to get your money’s worth and get to the gym, too! I pay for a year in advance, so I won’t ever miss more than two days in a row.
13. Schedule a Time
If something is important to you, you’ll make time for it… and working out is no different. Schedule specific time for it, and stick to your schedule. Zumba on Tuesdays nights, yoga on Saturday mornings, running on Monday and Wednesday mornings — however you create your perfect workout schedule, stick to it!
14. Find Inspiration
What inspires you? A famous quote from your favorite author? Or a picture of a determined-looking Tony Horton or a song by your favorite artist? Whatever it is, keep it in mind when you’re feeling lazy and you want nothing more than to sit on the sofa all day. This little boost may be all it takes to get you to stick to your workout!
15. Register for a Race
My calendar for the rest of the year is stocked with 5k races, at least one a month, and they’re already paid for, so I’m inclined to stick to my fitness routine so I can compete and not embarrass myself, or worse, hide out at home and not even make it to the race! Find an event near you, one that benefits a cause you believe in, and once you’re registered, make sure you can actually finish it… which means you’ll have to stick to our workout or risk coming in last — ouch!
16. Find a Workout Buddy
There’s nothing quite like the fear of having to explain to someone else why you didn’t show up at the gym yesterday to keep you motivated to stick to your workout. Find a workout buddy at the gym, and imagine having to answer to him or her when you don’t show up for your workout because you didn’t FEEL LIKE IT. Guilt and shame aren’t the best motivators, but in some cases, they can certainly help.
17. Hire a Pro
What if there was someone whose job it was to keep you motivated to stick to your workout? Wouldn’t that be wonderful? Well, my dear, such a person does exist — a personal trainer! Most gyms offer paid access to one, and they’re not expensive. Their entire purpose for being is to whip you into shape, so they’re worth every penny!
18. Just do It!
Sometimes all the good intentions, bribery, and little tricks in the world aren’t going to work. You’re just going to have to force yourself to stick to your workout! Stop being a sissy-pants, lace up your trainers, drag yourself off the couch… and go! Once you get moving, it will be easier… so just do it!
Now that you’ve seen my list of ideas to help you stick to your workout, do you think you can keep going? I do… I know you can! Which of these tips do you think will work for you? Or do you have another sneaky way to motivate yourself to work out that you’d like to share? Please do!
Top Image Source: flickr.com