1. Remove Excuses!
Are you a morning workout person? After work? Classes? DVDs at home? Whatever your preference is, make sure you have no excuse to NOT do it! If you struggle to get out of bed in the morning (me!), put your phone and your alarm clock across the room, and lay out your gym outfit the night before. Get your water bottle ready to be filled the next morning, earbuds by your phone, don't leave anything to chance. The key is to make getting ready for the gym just as much of a routine as your daily workout, so you don't even have to think about it.
2. Measure Progress!
There's nothing worse than feeling like you're working so hard but not seeing any results! Well, what are you working towards? To measure progress you first have to set a goal to work toward. Are you trying to tone up? Lose weight? Increase your mile speed? Whatever your goal, how are you measuring success? It may be as simple as trying your skinny jeans on each week and comparing how they fit to the week before (great motivation!). Lately my jeans have been a little loose (victory) and I'm working towards that beach bod for summer!
3. Meet a Friend!
Instead of meeting for afternoon coffee or a fattening dinner (queso?), how about you meet for a walk or at a specific fitness class! I always feel so productive if I meet a friend for an activity instead of a meal or treat! Of course, you're also less likely to bail on your workout if a friend is meeting you there. The buddy system really works!
4. Set Realistic Goals!
I'm going to be a size 2 in one month! Ummm, or not. What's a realistic goal for you, based on your current fitness routine? I'm a big proponent of pushing yourself and changing your lifestyle, but you need to be realistic too. If you currently don't workout at all, you might want to set a goal of doing something active 3x/week as opposed to "I'm going to workout for one hour 6 days a week." I set a goal to workout 5 or 6 times per week and I'm currently doing it and loving my results!
5. Join a Gym You Like!
This is HUGE! I used to pay $30/month for a big box gym membership and it was fine, but I was so bored and my fitness routine was not any kind of fun so I wasn't motivated to go to the gym! I joined StudioHop a few years ago when it was brand new to Dallas and left my gym and haven't ever looked back! In my case, I was worried about spending a lot on fitness but I finally decided that it was a priority in my life and I was going to put my money where my mouth was, so I started paying the monthly membership to have access to boutique fitness studios all over Dallas- everything from yoga to spin class to boxing, I've got it. I LOVE being able to mix up my workout routing every week and add more or less cardio, more strength, more stretching, or try a completely new class like aerial yoga! This is definitely a big part of what changed my commitment to fitness and it's only gotten better since joining StudioHop! I'll include my referral code below so you can join me studio workouts in Dallas! If paying $50/month works for you and you love your gym, great! If joining a $200/month yoga studio is what will make you workout, then I say sacrifice whatever else you need to in order to make it happen! Another thing I love about boutique fitness is that there is a cost for each class, so no skipping allowed! Part of what gets me there is that I'll be fined if I miss- serious motivation!
6. Do It For the 'Gram
Since I'm a blogger, of course I want to document my workouts for my followers, but now it has become a fun part of my workout routine each day- take a boomerang of a move I did in class that day and share it on Instagram stories. I'm sure some people hate it, but I always get questions and comments about the studios I visit and the workouts I'm doing, so I love sharing! If you're a runner and are lacking some motivation, maybe run around the lake that day and stop to take a few photos along the way to remind yourself how nice it is to be outside. Posting a photo just adds to my feeling of productivity after my workout, and I'll take all of the achievement feels I can get! Add some digital accountability by posting your gym selfie or just sending your daily pic to a friend!
7. Reward Yourself
No, not with a cupcake. What's that thing you're working towards? A new outfit? Is there another goal that you can tie into your fitness goal? I have been working on feeling better in my clothes, so as clothes are getting looser, I told myself that I could buy a few new things. I went on a mini shopping spree last week and LOVE my new items because I feel so confident in them, which makes me want to keep working out and keep feeling great!
I workout so I can eat! Well, maybe not 100%, but I do enjoy an occasional meal splurge and I love being able to splurge guilt-free, knowing that I worked hard that morning and I'm going to work hard again the next day and that my body can handle a few extra calories every now and then. I've done all sorts of diets and eating programs, and it's been a couple years now of steady fitness and just eating real nutritious food with treats mixed in that has actually been the program I can maintain, go figure ;) I love not having to worry about a specific number of carbs versus fats versus proteins or cutting out entire food groups! I just try to maintain a balance diet and then add in treats in moderation, knowing that I'm working on a long-term healthy lifestyle that is sustainable, not a short term crash diet!