Achieving fitness involves as much psychological work as it does physical exercise. To succeed, you will need clear and sustained motivation to keep you going in your regular workout routine. As you plan your new fitness routine, you should also plan ways to stay motivated.
Know Your Purpose
First, clarify your purpose for working out. Overall, you want to be healthier. You may want to lose weight, increase your muscle mass, improve your stamina, or a combination of reasons. Identify your main priority and list your reasons why it’s important to you.
Knowing your purpose will guide you in structuring your workout so that it’s most effective. An organized workout will save you from wasting your time and effort on activities that will not benefit you. Your purpose will also help you to create your specific goals.
Your fitness goals should be “SMART.” The letters of that word describe the components of a successful goal: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Time-bound. While “SMART” goals are often applied to business, they are just as relevant to working out.
When your fitness goals are specific and measurable, you can track them. Tracking goals helps you see the progress you’ve made in your journey.
You can keep a fitness log or use a wearable fitness tracker. “Time-bound” is also part of tracking. Assign each goal a deadline, but make sure it is achievable and realistic, especially as you begin. When you succeed in reaching your early goals, it keeps you motivated to keep going.
Too often, boredom interferes with motivation. If your workout doesn’t exercise your mind as well as your body, you may start to avoid it. To stay motivated, include a variety of exercises, and make sure no two workouts in a row are the same.
Your body will also respond positively to variety. You can reduce the risk of muscle strain and injury, and you can make sure all parts of your body get a workout. Learning new moves stimulates your brain, which leads to increased motivation.
Your new fitness routine can succeed in the long term but only if you stay motivated. It’s too easy to get distracted by the demands of life or discouraged by lack of progress. But, if you focus on those things you can control and celebrate your progress, your motivation will grow.
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