We all know that working out makes us feel good, helps reduce our stress, gives us more energy....etc, etc. I could go on.
But do you find that some weeks your workouts are the last thing you want to do or they completely slip off your schedule?
Well you're not alone! I get it!
The number of times I have found that there is suddenly a "really important" piece of work I need to do NOW, and it can't wait; or the dog needs to be walked NOW. I convince myself that my run can wait, particularly if it is a long run and I will do it tomorrow.
Then the guilt kicks in...
So what can you do about this? Here are some ideas for sticking to your workouts.
1. Plan ahead. Spend 10 minutes at the weekend planning the week ahead. Work out when you can fit workouts in; which are your key workouts and allow a certain amount of time for these. Are you an early morning or an evening person? Whatever you are, then plan your workouts for then. Aim not to put workouts in at a time you know you will not complete them as this is just setting yourself up to fail. Be realistic. If you know your week is going to be a tough week at work, then plan accordingly. This week could be made an easy, recovery week to help you cope and manage your workload.
2. Get a training partner. Being accountable to someone else helps improve consistency, whether this be a coach or a friend. I appreciate this could be a bit different in current times, but organize your workouts with a friend, particularly if you are exercising outside. Even Face Time or Zoom each other to do a workout class or yoga together.
3. Set a goal.
Find a race or a challenge that will motivate you. It can be a scary challenge like a long race or just a challenge to move every day. But it has to work for you and encourage you to workout. Setting goals in this way will help support you to have a purpose to workout. Even write this goal out and place it where you will regularly see it. Also remember you do not have to always be going full out with your training. Ensuring you are doing 2 or 3 weeks tough and then 1 week off is ideal. In fact now is great time to work on improving any weaknesses and focusing on enjoying your workouts..
4. Reframe your reason to workout. This is probably quite relevant at the moment, with the uncertainty about whether some races will go ahead in 2021. Developing an understanding of why you work out will help with motivation. If you cannot do your goal race, then why not work on really developing consistency with your running or training. Reframing your reason why from "I need to do this for my race" to "I want to enjoy each of my workouts and train Happy" will help reduce pressure on you, so you can train "Happy" and "Have Fun".
Be conscious of thoughts like "I can't" or "I don't want to". Stop yourself and acknowledge these thoughts. Think how you will feel after you have finished your workout. Get inspired and motivated by this feeling. Even write down how you feel after you workout and review this when you have those negative or doubts.
5. So you clean your teeth daily..... This is about ritual. You do not think twice about cleaning your teeth, so getting into a routine with your workouts will help. Becoming a habit means you will less likely miss a workout. Also this goes back to planning. If you know one day is going to be busier than normal do not put extra stress to fit in a hard workout. Take this into account and plan for it. Understanding your weekly commitments will improve your chances of working out regularly. You will really start seeing improvements and this should encourage you to keep moving. 6. Journal your workouts. By noting down how you felt during a workout you will be able to see your progress. This progression will help motivate you to do more and keep working out more regularly.
7. Go somewhere different for a run or walk.
Head out on an alternative route and discover a new area near you. How about running or walking all the streets in your community, just for something different.
Above all make your workout routine fun and keep your workouts interesting.
I'd love to hear your comments on this!