Fitness follows the principle of physics in that when the ball is rolling it keeps rolling but when stopped, it need some inertia to get going again. Here are some oldie but goodie mental tips that I use almost daily and tell my clients to implement so that they can get and stay on track.
Tip 1: Make an appointment with YOURSELF!
Way too often we tend to put ourselves low on the totem pole when our schedules get busy and demanding. Try to find a time of day that you are able to squeeze in your workout without too much distraction. Whether it be early in the morning or right after work before going home, or even after dinner. For example, in my calendar book, I write down my name at a time each day that I plan to exercise so that I have time to take care of myself… and I make this appointment pretty hard to break. In taking care of yourself, you will be better to others as well!
Tip 2: Find a few mantras that work for you.
We all have days that we need to self-motivate more than others. On those such days, I say “mantras” to myself that really push me into getting in the groove of the workout. Whether it be singing an empowering song in my head, thinking about a passed loved one, or simply just telling myself that “I AM STRONG!”, I find that these little tools help to get (and keep) me going.
Tip 3: Break up the workout into segments
If you break up the workout into time or activity segments, it can help you push through a long and/or challenging session. For example, if you plan to strength train for 60 minutes, try to approach it as 10 minutes of arms, 10 minutes of legs, and 10 minutes of core (abs and back); and do two rounds. Or for cardio, break up the session into one mile fragments instead of a full five mile trek. This mental trick can make the workout go by more quickly give you endurance!
Tip 4: Make your body your primary exercise “machine”
Instead of using large machines that have fixed angles, use your own body to strength train. Us at So.Be.Fit. like to call it “Training the body from the inside out”. Old fashioned squats, lunges, push-ups, wall sits and abdominal exercises are challenging take up no space, challenge your core and balance and as an added bonus are free since they require no equipment!
Tip 5: Ditch the negative self talk
Not surprisingly, studies have shown that those who regularly insult their physical appearance are much less likely to attain their health and fitness goals than those with a more positive self image. Look at your body as a priceless asset and think about all of the wonderful things you can do because of it. Your body is your livelihood and should be praised more often than bashed. For example, instead of thinking how big your butt looks in those jeans, thank your butt for getting you around all day!