We all know regular exercise comes with a long list of benefits for our health – from losing weight and building strength and muscle, to improving our sleep quality and increasing our energy levels, and even reducing stress and lifting our mood. So how come some days it’s just so darn hard to get up off the couch and get moving?
Most of the time, it is our brains to blame. It’s telling us to live in the moment, to do what makes us comfortable now and put off physical stress for as long as possible. But with that way of thinking, we’ll never reach our end goal of a healthier, happier bod. That takes time and dedication; patience and pain, things our subconscious mind just does not understand and tries desperately to avoid.
But the good news is, we can override that way of thinking. It’s as easy as visualizing ourselves in the future – fitter, stronger, and healthier – knowing that it’s 100% possible to get there, and most importantly, understanding that each and every workout session – no matter how short – is a necessary stepping stone toward reaching our goals. I mean, imagine where we’d be if we never uttered the worlds ‘I’ll start tomorrow’ and instead put a small amount of effort into one of our goals each day over the past year!
Ok, so now we’re up off the couch, but how exactly do we fit workouts into our busiest days, keep things interesting, and stay motivated to keep pushing through? Keeping reading for some tips that will hopefully inspire you, and help you actually enjoy exercising…
If the thought of an hour long workout is just too daunting, try fitting in shorter 20 or even 10 minute workouts. If your schedule is completely packed, or if even 10 minutes is too much, try doing at least one 5-minute HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout, even if that means turning back the alarm from 8:30am to 8:25am. Need some inspo? PopSugar has a ton of great 5-minute workouts that you can check out here!
Make a feel-good, heart-pumping playlist
Music is an amazing motivator when it comes to working out. Whether you’re doing quick HIIT workouts, hiking, kickboxing, or just running on the treadmill, music can help boost our confidence, stamina, and energy levels, pushing us to go even longer and harder. All you need are roughly 5-10 of your favorite faster-paced, feel-good songs organized into a playlist. Have them uploaded and ready to go on your music player at all times, so that you’ll never have another boring workout session.
Get yourself some good quality workout gear
When our bodies are working hard, the best thing we can do is keep it cool, comfortable, and well-supported. That’s where the right workout gear comes in. Instead of wearing baggy sweatpants and tees that soak up sweat, opt for pieces that are breathable, flexible, and fitted with a bit of compression. A supportive sports bra and a pair of leggings are a great place to start, and all you really need to keep the bust and bum in place while you’re jogging or doing any high intensity workout.
Some of my personal favorite workout pieces include these leggings from Eve’s Temptation. For one, they’re amazingly comfortable. They allow me to move freely while providing just the right amount of compression without feeling constricting. The leggings also have a wide top panel that evenly distributes light pressure around the waist and hips so they don’t dig, plus they really help smooth everything out around the lower half of the tummy.
Eve’s Temptation’s sports bras are just as flattering as their leggings, and also equally as practical (something I rarely come across while shopping for sports bras at my local sporting goods stores). The Chandler Sports Bra is a definite favorite – it provides the perfect amount of support for everything from yoga to running, while managing to still look feminine and actually create some shape! I’m also loving the light blue and white camo print (and they have leggings to match too!).
Just putting on your favorite pieces and wearing them around the house can help you get into the workout mindset!
Always be changing up your routine
Switching up both the activities and locations of your workouts is key to staying motivated and actually looking forward to our workouts. As humans, we thrive on new experiences, like meeting new people, exploring new parts of town, and practicing new skills/sports. When we try something new as part of our exercise routine, we get excited and more mentally involved. Time passes by more quickly, and we tend to concentrate less on feelings of tiredness and muscle pains So instead of always hitting the gym, try mixing things up a bit with a few different activities. Here are just a few ideas that I personally enjoy:
- hike nearby nature trails
- go for a bike ride around the neighborhood or along rail-trails
- mountain bike singletracks through the woods
- take a belly dancing class, or learn some new moves over on YouTube
- take a kickboxing class, or follow along to DVD
- try fusion routines like yoga HIIT, or cardio belly dancing
- try different dumbbell exercises and circuits
SHOP THE POST
How do you stay motivated to work out?
In partnership with Eve’s Temptation