Seriously, I am so thankful for each and every one of you who comes into the gym and works on their health and fitness a little bit with us at CrossFit LoDo. It strikes me how easy it is to make an excuse for not coming in the door.
What is motivation anyway? How and why does it wane, and how do you get it back?
First of all, it isn’t a magic potion. Those who hit the gym and stay healthy don’t do something magical that others simply cannot do. I have been told my whole life that 90% of success is just showing up, and I do believe that to be true. Just get there, and the rest takes care of itself.
But lets live in the “get there” for a minute. Because if it was easy, not so many would fall of the wagon on a weekly basis, as I know I can be guilty of. I’d like to publish a few “motivation rules” that you can look back on if you’re feeling like skipping a day or just “not feeling it.”
1.) There is always enough time for those that make time. We all have 24 hours in the day. We all fall short on sleep, eating properly, working out, time with friends, doing enough work, catching up with family, having alone time…and on and on…please, just remember, we all fight the same struggles. Instead of relying on an excuse out of this list, acknowledge that if it was a priority you would go (whether that be to your parents house for the weekend, or to the gym, or to your friends camping trip etc.)
2.) Just because you don’t choose to do the thing you think you “should” do, that isn’t an excuse to feel bad or be down on yourself. Have you ever taken the time to actually listen to what is going on with you? When was the last time you meditated and slowed down enough to know WHY you may be feeling the urge not to do the thing that logically feels important. Is there anxiety around going to the gym for some reason? Are you not getting where you want to go? Why are your “ideals” and your “actions” not matching up? One simply needs to change.
Of all the things I’ll preach in health and wellness, it absolutely must be something you enjoy. So the whole two negatives not making a positive (I didn’t go to the gym so now I’m mad at myself) definitely doesn’t work. Promise yourself you’ll listen to why that decision was made. If you think that your overall health and well being is better by NOT going to the gym. then you’ve made a great choice. The self deprecation and the hormones associated with the loathing are far more harmful than one trip to the gym to get a sweat. I would challenge you to look at changing your routine or your goals if for more than a few days in a row you answer that your happiness and health is better suited out of the current routine at the gym than in it!
3.) If at all possible, just go. Don’t overthink it, showing up takes care of about 90% of the issues you falsely create in your head about it being too early, you being stressed, the workout being too hard, the traffic and on and on. Go in and do what you are capable of that day. You’ll be so glad you did.
4.) Reward yourself. Understand that health and wellness isn’t an easy decision to make. Feel good that you’ve chosen that. Reward yourself with meals, vacations, fun times with friends, and even feeling good about a workout even when its in the middle of the pain cave. YOU ARE DOING IT!! You’re making the decision to be healthy and while in the moment it may not be fun, think of all the time you’re buying with your future self and your significant other, your kids, grandkids, friends, etc. Think of all the adventures you can have living in a healthy mind and body.
5.) Always, always enjoy the journey and forget your aging self. I can admit that when the ten second clock starts I’m often not excited at all. I know what I’m getting myself into and that can be not very enjoyable. But those nerves, those butterflies, the nervous pee, the “I don’t know if I can do that,” they are more than worth it. Don’t accuse me of being too weird here but doesn’t that sound like a kid who is trying something that is actually FUN for them to do? Why is it when we get older we prefer comfort over wonder? Why do we prefer what we know rather than the challenge of what could be? I don’t have a great answer for that either, but forget your aging self and give into the pleasure of the journey.
6.) Be your own fitness hippie, what would you add to your list? What are the things that will fulfill you enough to choose what isn’t always easy to?