cardio fitness motivation

5 Keys to staying motivated

What is it that motivates us to start a new sport or exercise programme, or strive for any goal, for that matter? Why do we keep at it? Why do we sometimes quit? 

It's hard to stay motivated sometimes. We set ourselves goals, whether it's weight loss, a new challenge in our sport, or to feel good in body and mind. We start out super motivated, and then, sometimes, we slow down a bit, or maybe even stop altogether. Here are some pointers on how to stay on track and reach your goal!

cardio fitness motivation

Key #1: get organised, make a plan, and stick to your schedule

Planning out your training schedule is extremely important. Don't forget to add your weight training workouts, your cardio sessions, or your running or cycling outings, to your weekly planner. Don't cancel them on the excuse of drinks with co-workers or a meeting that dragged on for ages. Stay focused on your goals, and keep moving forward. And if you work out during the lunch break, don't forget to take your sport bag and water bottle as you head to work in the morning. Also make sure to prepare or plan balanced snacks that give you the energy you need for your workout.

cardio fitness motivation

Key #2: listen to your body (but not too much)

It's too hot. It's too cold. You're tired. You feel out of shape. You're coming down with a cold... Don't feel like working out today? Feel a bit overwhelmed and can't get your head into your training?

Your body is trying to talk to you. Listen to it.

Even if you don't like it, better to push your workout to the evening or the next day, and do something else instead. Otherwise you run the risk of having a bad time or, worse yet, injuring yourself.

Of course, "listening to yourself" too much isn't good either, because it takes regularity to reach your goals. The more you stick to a regular schedule, the faster you'll make progress, which will help you stay motivated.

Get to know your body and learn to trust it!

cardio fitness motivation

Key #3: set yourself intermediate goals

Often, we set ourselves very high goals. Losing a lot of weight in a short period of time, a body-building competition that requires bulking up and then cutting, a marathon, a long-distance trail event with some tough climbs, etc. In short, we sometimes underestimate the difficulty of reaching our goal.

Our advice? Set yourself intermediate goals. Could be 2 or 3, or even more, depending on how much time you have for your physical preparation. For example, if preparing for a marathon, sign up for a 10K run, then a half-marathon, etc. It's easier to do long runs when they're part of official events, as the group participation and competitive atmosphere is great motivation in itself.

Every time you reach one of these objectives, you get a boost that helps you reach the next one, until you reach your final goal.

cardio fitness motivation

Key #4: don't go at it alone

If you sign up for a trail run event, for example, you'll need to do short runs, long runs, and very long runs. Create your own network, and surround yourself with others who have similar goals. Then you're not the only one setting yourself a challenge. It's easier to stay motivated if you run with a partner or in a group, or meet up at the gym.

Also remember to talk about it with your family and make sure you're all in agreement about your respective workout schedules. Having the support of your loved ones is essential. You'll enjoy yourself more, and you won't feel guilty about setting out on your bike or heading to the gym.

cardio fitness motivation

Key #5: stick to points 1-4, and add a healthy lifestyle

In short, to stay motivated, we suggest you get organised, work out with others, get the support of your family, set yourself intermediate goals that are easier to reach, and show your body respect by listening to it. You'll make progress, enjoy yourself, share without feeling guilty, and stay ultra motivated. And that's exactly where you want to be!

A healthy lifestyle plays a very important role in staying in shape, not injuring yourself, and staying highly motivated. So remember to get enough sleep (7 to 8 hours a night), stay hydrated, eat a balanced diet, and moderate your alcohol consumption.

To stay highly motivated for a long time, put our five tips into action.

Next, be sure to share your thoughts, comments and experiences with all of us!



Decathlon communication team

A passionate cardio fitness, Pilates and nutrition coach. Mum to two little boys who can only be described as... super active!