How To Motivate Yourself To Workout: 16 Tips to Get Moving

Want to know how to motivate yourself to workout? Then you’re in the right place.

Although you may understand the benefits of exercising, it can still be difficult to find the motivation to do so when you’re not in the mood. But by setting achievable objectives and establishing a routine, you can regain your momentum.

Our guide provides practical advice to help increase your motivation and get you back into a workout routine, regardless of how long it’s been since your last workout session.

How To Motivate Yourself To Workout:

1. To boost your motivation to work out, create a list of achievable goals and keep it visible.

Consider the reasons why you want to exercise and set specific fitness targets with a clear deadline. This list should include both short-term and long-term goals, such as being able to do 50 sit-ups and eventually running a marathon. It is important to avoid making your workout solely focused on appearance as this can lead to discouragement.

Instead, focus on achievable goals and avoid comparing yourself to unrealistic expectations. It is also important to start with manageable goals and work your way up to more challenging ones, rather than setting unattainable goals that may lead to disappointment.

2. Change your mindset by replacing the word “should” with “want.”

Using “should” or “have to” makes it harder to start working out, so instead focus on your goals and remind yourself why you are motivated to exercise. If you find yourself thinking “I should go for a run, but I don’t want to,” try reframing your thoughts by reminding yourself of a specific goal such as “I want to feel stronger and more confident, and running today will help me achieve that.”

3. Invest in some stylish workout attire.

If you only have a limited number of gym clothes, you may be more likely to skip your workout if you haven’t done laundry. Splurge on a few pieces of athletic wear that you love and get excited to wear during your workout.

Comfortable and properly fitting shoes are important for preventing injuries and enhancing your workout experience. Don’t skimp on quality, as cheap shoes that don’t fit well can lead to various physical issues.

If buying new gear is not feasible for you, try asking for loaner gear from a gym, team, or organization. They may be willing to provide you with gear to try before making a purchase.

Note that workout gear can be costly, so purchase what you can afford. You can start by buying a few pieces at a time and look out for sales.

Keep your workout gear in sight, such as on a chair or table, to keep the idea of exercising in the forefront of your mind.

4. Give yourself a treat when you successfully finish a workout or reach a new target.

Choose something that will encourage you when exercising becomes difficult or you feel like staying on the couch.

Your treat can be anything that excites you, like grabbing a smoothie, binge-watching your favorite show, or purchasing a new pair of shoes you’ve been wanting.

5. Consider finding a workout partner if you prefer having accountability.

Some people are content with exercising solo, but others may find motivation from working out with a friend. You can arrange to exercise together, or just check in with each other at the end of each day to see if you both achieved your goals.

Chatting with a friend can help you overcome obstacles that prevent you from working out. Explaining why you missed a workout session will make you reflect on the root cause, whether it’s self-doubt, stress, or feeling overwhelmed.

Joining a group fitness class can provide a supportive community that will inspire you to stay active.

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6. Create a workout playlist filled with upbeat music that will inspire you to move.

Studies have revealed that music with a beat range of 125-140 bpm is the most suitable for exercise. Select high-energy tunes with a powerful beat that you can dance to while working out (1).

Begin playing your workout playlist as you get ready to mentally prepare yourself before the start of your exercise routine.

7. Set a target of exercising 3 times a week.

By setting a realistic goal like this, it increases the chances of sticking to it as you won’t feel disheartened if you miss a day. In fact, when you exercise without feeling stressed, you might even be inspired to work out more frequently than your goal.

On average, aim to do 150 minutes of cardio in a week, and incorporate strength training into your routine at least 2 times a week.

8. Incorporate both cardio and strength exercises into your workout plan.

It’s crucial to balance cardio, which improves endurance, with strength training exercises like weight lifting.

Some workouts offer both, like Zumba or circuit training.

By combining strength and cardio, you can achieve both at the same time. Incorporate exercises like jump squats, burpees, and mountain climbers into your cardio routine. Crossfit or circuit training are other options.

It’s okay to start with just one type of exercise, depending on your fitness level. You can begin with a simple walk or a 15-minute strength workout from YouTube. The goal is to have a balanced workout, but start with what works for you.

9. Incorporate exercise into your daily schedule.

With a busy lifestyle, it’s essential to prioritize your workout just like you would with any other important task. Put it in your calendar like a meeting or a doctor’s appointment and make it a non-negotiable part of your day.

You don’t have to allocate hours for your workout. Even a short 20-minute session can be effective. Break it down into 10 minutes of intense workout followed by a 10-minute shower, and you’re good to go!

10. Sign up for fitness classes to stay motivated.

Making a financial commitment to a class is a great way to increase your motivation to workout. Even if you have to pay for a missed class, it can be a useful motivator to show up.

Fitness classes also provide a supportive community and the advantage of expert instruction to help improve your form. Choose classes that incorporate cardio and strength training, like circuit training or Crossfit (2), or find a class that fits your specific interests, such as yoga, spin, kickboxing, or dance.

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11. Begin with manageable workout sessions.

Don’t push yourself too hard by starting with a long workout right off the bat. Start with attainable goals, such as performing 10 jumping jacks and 10 push-ups. Then, gradually increase the number the following day by adding 5 more of each exercise and including 10 squats.

12. Set achievable objectives during your exercise routine.

The idea of exercising for 20 minutes on a treadmill can be overwhelming, especially if you feel exhausted after just two minutes. Rather than focusing on the entire workout, set intermediate targets for yourself, such as reaching 3 minutes, then 5, and then 7. If needed, adjust your pace during the workout to ensure that you can continue and meet your goals.

13. Use a motivational technique like making a deal with yourself if starting is tough.

When it comes to exercising, getting started can be the most challenging aspect. If you’re having trouble getting going, consider making a deal with yourself. Promise yourself that you’ll only put on your workout gear, without any further commitment.

Next, convince yourself to just step outside and stretch, complete your warm-up exercises, or drive to the gym.

14. Discover activities you enjoy for your workout.

Exercise does not always have to be limited to conventional workouts like running or weightlifting. As long as you are being active, you are improving your health. Find a physical activity that you truly love, such as rock climbing, swimming, or dancing, and use that as your workout.

Just doing a short dance session in your living room a few times a day can also help you get fit. Other enjoyable workouts could include Tai Chi, Zumba, parkour, or even participating in an amateur sports team.

15. Mix up your exercise routine to prevent boredom.

Doing the same activity every day, such as jogging or following a specific workout video, can become monotonous and lead to decreased motivation. To keep your body challenged, switch between different forms of exercise, like running one day, weightlifting another day, and taking a swim on the weekends. This helps to avoid hitting a plateau and keeps your workouts interesting.

16. Keep track of your fitness journey by writing down your feelings and progress in a journal.

Writing down how you felt after each workout can serve as a motivator when you’re feeling demotivated to exercise. By reflecting on your progress, you can see just how far you’ve come and how good working out makes you feel.

For example, you might write something like, “I finally surpassed my personal record on running a mile! I feel energized and powerful, and I think I can still improve.”

To motivate yourself to work out, it is important to find activities you enjoy and to switch up your routines to keep yourself challenged. Setting mini-goals during your workout and writing down your progress and feelings in a fitness journal can also help.

Scheduling time for your workout into your day and signing up for fitness classes are other ways to motivate yourself. You can also start with short workouts and make bargains with yourself if you have trouble getting started.

Overall, it’s important to find a balance of both cardio and strength training in your routine and to make working out a priority.

Thank you for reading this article about how to motivate yourself to workout and I really hope that you take action my advice.

I wish you good luck and I hope its contents have been a good help to you.

Przemkas Mosky
Przemkas Mosky started Perfect 24 Hours in 2017. He is a Personal Productivity Specialist, blogger and entrepreneur. He also works as a coach assisting people to increase their motivation, social skills or leadership abilities. Read more here