Monday 17 August 2015

Face Up Fitness: Training, 6 Ways To Stay Motivated!

With a certain sense of foreboding, I give you my top six tips on how to keep the exercise bug going.

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you may recall that I launched Face Up Fitness about a month ago, as a platform for sharing my passion for gym training. I mentioned then that I would kick off the series proper about now, with a ‘top tips’ on motivation.

Only, I forgot that I’d be writing it from Spain and it so happens that I have not the slightest interest in doing any exercise as I write this! It’s a completely alien experience for me. I’m fitness mad and have been for years. I holiday in Spain every August and always train while I’m here.

However, I’m recovering from a leg injury (more on that in a future post) and so I can’t do what I normally do on hols - running. Swimming is an option but it would mean getting up before sunrise or doing it late (I don’t fancy either) to avoid sun exposure (the sun reflects off water and I’m not putting waterproof sunscreen to the test again – I did last year with dire consequences!).
Unused: Yoga mat, sweat towel, training diary

Instead, I’ve brought along my yoga mat and training diary, which includes exercises that I can do without the use of any equipment. But in spite of good planning, I just can’t seem to get my exercise act together!

If you’ve also lost your fitness mojo, or are perhaps about to start out on an exercise programme for the very first time, here are my top tips for staying motivated - I'm about to put a bunch of these into practice myself! *STOP PRESS* - I've just discovered a local gym that takes walk-in trainers. More on this soon!!

-    Join a gym that's easy to get to, ideally within walking distance. A plush gym d├ęcor can be dazzling, as can shiny locker rooms, ‘his and hers’ saunas and steam rooms, and not to mention the latest computerised cardio equipment, but if it’s a 30 minute drive away through very heavy traffic, you’ll soon lose the will to live, never mind to train.

-    Find an exercise that you enjoy. For me it’s doing weights and cardio. But I have friends who hate the gym and love classes - spinning, pilates, yoga and so on. I have another friend who only ever swims, and one who plays volleyball four times a week. You don’t need to enjoy a broad spectrum of different sports – just the one will do!

-    Train with a friend. Training buddies can be a massive source of motivation. It makes working out more social, fun and dare I say competitive, though don’t spend the whole time chatting – you are both there to train!

-    Timetable your workouts. If you’re forever putting off your training for another day, having it timetabled will mean that is less likely to happen. For example, you could make a note to train Tues, Weds, and Fri at 7pm. Those times don't have to be set in stone but having them timetabled like that means you'd rarely miss a session.

-    Buy new gym gear. It’s surprising how a new pair of Nike leggings and a Sweaty Betty racer back top can suddenly make you want to run a marathon. Ok, perhaps not quite a desire to run 26 miles, but who wouldn’t want to show off that hot new body you’re honing in some sexy new gear you’ve just bought.
-    Listen to music – your own compilation! Music is terrifically motivating, unless you’re listening to an in-gym station that is - they are dire! So take you iPod loaded with choice tracks or if you swim get yourself a waterproof player – yes, they exist (Speedo do one like the above)! Music is what keeps me motivated. I know that because on the few occasions when my iPod has run out of juice, I’ve had to stop training! Seriously, without a bit of Nero and Deadmau5 pumping through my brain there is little to motivate me, unless I spot a fit athlete training too - it’s surprising how motivating a bit of eye candy can be!  

What keeps you motivated when it comes to fitness training?

Main Pic Credit: Irina Slutsky
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