5 tips on getting (and staying) motivated

Are you just starting to weight train or are thinking about it and are wondering how to get and stay motivated for your workouts? We can help. 

5 tips on getting (and staying) motivated

Weight training is not always the most exciting activity, and it can be hard to find the motivation after a long day at work. How do some people manage to keep at it, month after month? Where do they find the motivation?

In this article, we'll give you some tips on how to get and stay motivated over the long term to reach your fitness and weight training goals.

#1. Understanding why you want to weight train

Have you ever noticed that when you understand the "why" of something, it's easier or more fun to do? Having a reason to do it means it takes less effort. With weight training, it's the same thing - you need to have a good reason to do it.
Sometimes people decide to take up exercising for different reasons: it's trendy, they've heard about it in the media, or because it's healthy. But their motivation may be lacking, because they're not actually all that excited about it.

Figuring out the "why" is the first step before taking up weight training (or any other activity, in fact). Because if deep down you don't really want to do it, you won't get anything out of it and you'll end up quitting. The key to weight training is consistency over the long term.

So before starting weight training, you should ask yourself a few questions, such as:
What makes you happy in life?
What would make you even happier? Being stronger, thinner or in better shape?

If you don't feel good in your own skin, if you feel the need to change your physical appearance or to be healthier, or just need a way to get moving and get out of your head, weight training can help.

Did you have an aha moment? Something that made you rethink your life? If so, go ahead, but remember that you'll need more to keep you going.

If you take up weight training or fitness but you don't actually like it, it won't make you happy and you'll likely quit within a short period of time. You need to find a sport you love, whether that's cycling, running, swimming, boxing... The main thing is to be active and have fun.

Motivation doesn't just appear with a snap of your fingers. You have to create and develop it based on your reasons for doing something.

#2. Setting your goal

Once you've figured out your "why" - the reason for taking up weight training or fitness - you can work on the second part of developing motivation: your goal.

Setting a goal for yourself is always more motivating and will help you keep up your efforts over the long term.

There are different types of goals you can set. You may want to tone up, slim down or gain muscle, or perhaps you want to be healthier, improve your well-being or perform better.

Not sure how to go about setting a fitness goal? Check out our tips in this article: How to set a fitness goal.

Just remember that you should be realistic about your goals. Aiming too high or setting too short a time frame will just leave you frustrated.
You should also try not to overestimate your capacities. It's impossible for a woman to get the body of a champion bodybuilder in two months with bodyweight exercises (or even with weights…).

#3. Create a routine

Once you've settled on a goal, you need to implement your training and nutritional programme.

Ideally, you should create your own routine that suits your needs and schedule. Using someone else's routine can be a good starting point, but in the medium term, it may not work for your needs, goals or lifestyle.

But why do you need a tailored routine?
Creating your own routine will help you be more consistent. You'll schedule regular workout times around your professional and personal life (the aim is to integrate sport into what you already do). The goal is to schedule at least one workout per week.

That said, remember the saying "slow and steady wins the race"? The same goes for working out. There's no point scheduling six workouts a week if you're only able to keep it up for two weeks.

5 tips on getting (and staying) motivated

WANT A COACH ON YOUR SMARTPHONE?

Whether it's weight training, HIIT or strength circuits, choose the programme that fits your goals and let a coach guide you!

#4. Don't put pressure on yourself

Nothing happens with a snap of the fingers - you'll need to be patient and try to enjoy your workouts.

Your progress will vary, and sometimes, you'll hit a plateau (don't worry, this is a normal part of the process). 

One tip: choose a goal based on mastery of a skill that depends only on you (which will be more motivating) than a goal that depends on external conditions that you may not control. It might take longer to see results, but the most important thing is to keep working towards your goals… The rest is out of your hands.

Try to stick closely to your routine, but don't be too hard on yourself. Remember to be kind to yourself.

#5. The key to success: Motivation or discipline? 

What if the secret to weight training wasn't so much motivation, but discipline?
Even when you set goals for yourself with real purpose, you may occasionally (or often) have days where you just don't feel like working out - maybe you had a rough day, got bad news or just don't feel so great.
Our moods can really throw a kink into our routines. First, don't feel guilty. You're only human. Everyone has felt their motivation wane at some point.

You need to accept that there will be days where you don't feel like doing something, and that you'll just have to force yourself anyway to reach your goals.

There you have it - our five tips to stay motivated for your weight training activities. 
What are your best tips for staying motivated? Let us know in the comments! 

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