Are your New Year fitness goals starting to slip? These 9 tips will fire you up again!
1. Make a vision board
Cut out inspirational images and motivational quotes and paste them onto a large sheet of card. You can do this on a computer, but we think it’s much powerful to create a paper version. You could use images of your goal body shape, or photos of your holiday destination. Phrases that get you fired up to work out, or classic quotes from sports movies. Put the vision board somewhere you’ll see it every single day.
2. Schedule time for exercise
Things that get planned, get done. So book your exercise sessions in your diary or wall calendar just like you would any other appointment. This is easy if you like group exercise classes, but important to do even if you are off to the gym or heading out for a run.
3. Make it social
Plan to exercise with a friend. Arrange to meet at a specific time and place, or book yourselves on to an exercise class. Once you’ve done 3 workout sessions together, go for a healthy lunch or coffee and swap your favourite healthy-eating recipes, ingredients or meal swaps.
4. Plan and prep food
Preparing food ahead of time is a trick used by the world’s best bodies. Set aside time twice a week (Sunday and Wednesday for example) and prepare lunches and snacks for the following few days. If you eat breakfast at work or on the go, prepare those too. Then batch cook at least part of your dinners, so you always have a healthy and on-plan option to turn to even when you’re tired and stressed.
5. Put strategies in place
Take a little time to assess your daily habits and eating patterns. Most of us are prone to overeating or snacking on treats at a particular time of day. If you can see your own bad habits coming, you can do something to sidestep them. What can you do instead to distract yourself, or treat your emotions in a less calorific way?
6. Take it back to basics
If you’ve lost fitness motivation because it all got too much, then don’t stop altogether. Just take it right back to basics. Rather than trying to go to the gym 5 days a week, aim for 3 days. Celebrate that success! Once that habit is in place, add another goal. Don’t try to do it all at once.
7. Track your success
It’s not easy to maintain motivation if you can’t see progress. So whether you are losing weight, training to run a marathon, or building your strength in the gym, track progress. This could be through a training log, progress pictures, using an app, or writing a blog. Make sure you read back through your data. You’ll see how far you’ve come, and be your own motivation!
8. Make a playlist
Music has been shown to have a huge effect on our mood, and can even push athletes on to run faster, jump higher, and give the performance of a lifetime. It will work for you, too. Create a new playlist to get you fired up before you go out running, or on the drive to the gym.
9. Join a friend
If your own fitness goals are feeling stale, look outside yourself for inspiration. Ask your most active, sporty or healthy friend or family member if you can tag along with them as they workout, cook a healthy meal, or spend an active day outside at the weekend. Sometimes seeing someone else enjoying the healthy life can motivate you to do the same.