I fell off the gym-wagon recently and had to find a way to motivate myself back into my usual routine of doing 3 to 4 different classes each week. After a couple of weeks off after being unwell followed by a bout of laziness, I felt daunted at the prospect of getting back to it. I would tell myself that it would be like starting all over again in terms of my fitness and that I'd miss having my evenings to curl up on the sofa or visit friends and family.
Here's how I motivated myself to get back into my gym routine and not feel guilty about the 3 weeks (maybe 4) I had off.
1. Reset My Goals
To get gym motivated again I sat down and reminded myself why I was doing it in the first place. For me it's my wedding in 12 months time that keeps me going. Every week I waste not going to the gym is one less week to be the person I want to be as I walk down the aisle. Your gym motivation could be signing up for a 5k or 10k in a few months or wanting to feel happy and confident on your next beach holiday. Whatever it is, write it down and make a plan to achieve it.
I found my gym motivation this morning and I hope you do too!
2. Plan Everything
Anyone who knows me knows that I'm super-organised to an almost OCD level. You can't beat a good list and nothing helps you stick to your fitness goals better than having a clear plan of attack. There's lots of useful and free tools online that you can use to help you plan your week. I use Google Drive Sheets so I can access the sheet from my iPhone, iPad or from a laptop/desktop computer. I check my meal and exercise plan for the week and I can update it on the go so I don't forget to fill everything in. For the days where I've been really good I highlight the cells in green so at the end of the week if there's lots of green on the sheet then I can see how well I've done.
I used to highlight bad days in red but found that this didn't motivate me at all because I'd end up feeling guilty for one red day even if every other day was green. Now I leave those days blank and move on to the next day.
3. Pinterest Board
I love Pinterest. It's been endlessly useful for ideas decorating the house, redesigning the garden, wedding styling, new hair styles and exciting recipes. I've also created a secret gym motivation board which I pack full of motivation, from inspiration quotes like "Sweat Like a Pig, Look Like a Fox" to images of body types I aspire to. I wouldn't recommend going for unattainable, photoshopped images of super models, but instead women like the gorgeous and curvy Ashley Graham. If you're sat debating between a lie in and getting up for an early spin class then scroll through your Pinterest board and you'll be up and at 'em in no time.
4. You'll Feel Great After
Keep thinking of that endorphin buzz you'll get afterwards as you walk out of the gym with a smile on your face, legs shaking and sweat dripping from, well, everywhere. It feels a lot better than an hour sat on the sofa which often leaves me feeling lethargic.
5. Go Hard
Whilst this may not work for everyone, I set myself a tough first target to get back into the gym. For me this was a 7am class as I often struggle in the mornings to find the motivation to get up. If I can get myself up at 6am and drag myself to the gym then I can do anything. It worked and now I'm more motivated than ever and writing this blog post!