You’ve taken the first step and started your fitness journey—good for you! But now comes another difficult part: staying motivated. Once the newness of your routine wears off, it can be hard to stay motivated to stick with it, especially when sleeping in or vegging on the couch sounds much more appealing in the moment.
Keep yourself on track and in shape by trying one of these five motivation tips:
- Keep your gear out. Out of sight, out of mind is a common idiom, but it holds true when it comes to staying motivated. It’s easier to stay motivated when you have a visual reminder staring you in the face. Keep your gym bag packed and placed by the door, in your car or anywhere else hard to miss. You can also keep your workout clothes and shoes next to your bed to make it easier to get ready for the early morning workouts.
- Find your tribe. Approach fitness with a “it takes village” mentality. Join a group fitness class, sign up for a running group or recruit a friend to be your workout buddy. Working out with other people boosts your motivation and keeps you accountable when you’d rather be binge-watching your favorite show. Plus, turning fitness into a social activity can make it more fun—who doesn’t love swapping stories during the cool down? You can also join the Priority Health Champions program to connect with other fitness-loving people to get inspired, stay motivated and even earn free gear.
- Reward yourself. Remember how excited you got when the doctor gave you a sucker or a sticker after a checkup when you were a kid? Do the same for yourself after you accomplish a fitness or health goal. If you’re watching your diet, non-food rewards are a great way to help you stick to your fitness regimen and stay healthy. Take yourself shopping, plan a trip or treat yourself to a massage when you meet a fitness goal as a way to pat yourself on the back.
- Do one small thing. Some days the prospect of spending an hour at the gym just seems like too much. When you feel your motivation slipping, tell yourself you only need to do a small part of your workout and then you can stop if you’re still not in the mood. For example, commit to working out for just 15 minutes when you’re not feeling motivated and reevaluate how you feel after that time has passed–if you’re still feeling crummy after those 15 minutes you can go home and put on your PJs. Or, you might feel great and decide to keep working out after those 15 minutes are up.
- Try something new. Routines can be, well, boring after a while. Banish the monotony by trying something new. Take a kickboxing class, go for a hike, try rock climbing—there are so many ways to add variety to your workout regimen and keep yourself from getting bored.
Lack of motivation happens to everyone, but it doesn’t have to derail your fitness routine. Get your motivation back and get moving!