Your 5 am alarm sounds out a shrill awakening. Rather than getting up with gusto for your morning sweat session, you side-eye your gym bag and start justifying why you absolutely can’t get out of bed for the gym today.

Where’s last night’s motivation gone?

It’s recommended that we get at least 150 minutes of physical activity a week, or at least 20 minutes a day. In reality, about half of us are falling short.

So, what’s killing your fitness mojo?

To help you get up, get your workout gear on, and get moving, I’ve put together my list of ultimate fitness inspiration tips.
  1. Keep your body guessing
When it comes to creating new habits, variation is your enemy. But, when it comes to fitness, variation and a myriad of different training programs and styles can keep you focused for longer, making sure you achieve your goals faster.

Your training regime could include HIIT, weight training, low-intensity sessions, core strength workouts, group classes, circuit, plyometrics, and more.

Don’t be afraid to change up your weekly exercise routine. Add different styles to keep your mind and body focused and increase your overall fitness as your body won’t have time to adapt to the intensity levels – and that’s a good thing! Plus, it never gets boring.
  1. Light your fire with friendly competition
Whether you want to achieve optimal fitness or just want to go faster than the other person on the bike next to you at the gym, friendly competition could be your answer. Even if you’re not normally competitive, find someone – or perhaps a group – that’s a little faster and better than you. A little friendly competition can do wonders for inspiration. It’s kind of about team effort, but your performance is all down to you.
  1. Reward yourself
Plenty of people are motivated by vague fitness goals, like “weight control,” or “bigger muscles.” But that might just not do it for you. So, make the benefits of fitness more tangible, like treating yourself to your favorite TV show binge on the weekend or grabbing a delicious smoothie after a run.

An extrinsic reward can be incredibly powerful since the brain tends to latch onto it and makes the link that your behavior is well worthwhile.

Try to create a brand-new habit, like a cue to trigger your behavior – whether it’s setting out your riding shoes next to your kit bag, and then a routine, like actually getting out on your bike, and then the reward.

Over time, your brain will associate your fitness habit with a surge of endorphins and a healthy reward. In fact, I’ve trained my brain to recognize that the workout is the reward and now I don’t even want a treat!
  1. Ask for support
I know it can be hard to ask for help, but if you truly want to stick to your fitness routine, you need encouragement from others.

My family and I have built exercise into our family life. We see it as a necessity but also quality time. We support each other in our routines or preferred activities.

For other people, it may be finding a friend to share that zest for running, or planning group classes with your girlfriends (friendly competition goes well here). It’s so easy to hit the snooze button when it’s only you, but so much harder to leave someone waiting at the gym door.

Alternatively, why not join an online community with nutrition and fitness experts? You’ll get tons of support from other people with similar goals to you, and you’ll probably find you inspire others.
  1. Make fitness a daily meeting
One of the biggest excuses people make about fitness is not having time. For me, with a family and a job, I schedule my fitness into life like it’s a meeting.

I stick it in my diary, sometimes even weeks in advance, and I promise myself to never, ever move that meeting.

So, no matter how busy my life gets or the curve balls that are thrown, I still go, and I schedule other things around my fitness time. The result? I’m less stressed, clear-headed, and inspired to carry on with my routine.

These are 5 of the things that inspire me to keep up with my fitness. What inspires you?

 

Keep track of my journey at marksalinas.com.

 

 

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