Motivating yourself to start exercising again after the winter season can be challenging, but with the right approach, you can regain your fitness momentum. Here are 10 tips to help you get motivated to restart – or start for the first time (It’s never too late!).
It’s natural that we hibernate more in winter – spending time indoors, exercising less. But spring is here! We have earlier sunrises, later sunsets and what just feels like more hours in the day to get more done. And, actually, exercise helps to energise us further.
If you’re looking for tips to get back into your exercise routine or maybe start a new regime or exercising for the first time, read on!
Tips To Get You Motivated:
- Set Clear Goals
Define specific, achievable fitness goals. Whether it’s weight loss, muscle gain, increased endurance or improved flexibility, having clear objectives will give you a sense of purpose.
- Create a Workout Plan
Develop a structured workout plan that includes a mix of activities you enjoy. Having a plan in place makes it easier to stay consistent. For example, if your goal is weight-loss, then including a mix of cardio and strength training is essential. Plan your week around your activities, making sure to include a rest day.
- Start Slowly
Don’t push yourself too hard in the beginning. Begin with shorter, less intense workouts to avoid burnout and reduce the risk of injury. Remember that what you want is to create a sustainable lifestyle with regular exercise.
- Find Your Community
Exercising with a friend or family member can make workouts more enjoyable and hold you accountable. You can motivate each other and make it a social activity. Don’t have a person in your circle? Join a running club or sign-up for group classes with a coach who will hit you up on Whatsapp if you don’t pull through.
- Reward Yourself
Set up a reward system for achieving milestones in your fitness journey. Rewards can be simple, like treating yourself to new workout gear or an outfit, a pedicure or a blow-dry.
- Incorporate Variety
Spice up your routine with a variety of exercises to keep things interesting. Try different classes, outdoor activities or sports to prevent boredom. Cross-training also means that you work different muscles at different times, stimulating different parts of your body and brain.
- Track Your Progress
Keep a fitness journal or use a tracking app to record your workouts and monitor your progress. Seeing improvements can be highly motivating. For example, note what your 5km running time is now and measure again in 3 months; how many push-ups you can do now VS in 3 months
- Create a Supportive Environment
Make your environment conducive to exercise. Set up a dedicated workout space at home, stock up on healthy snacks and remove any obstacles that may hinder your motivation. For example, always pack out your training gear the night before, so that it’s easy to get up and go in the morning. Tell your colleagues about your new routine so that they can support you and not derail you.
- Set a Schedule
Establish a regular workout schedule that fits your lifestyle. Treat your exercise time as non-negotiable. Block it out in your diary if needs be, just like any other appointment.
- Stay Mindful
Remind yourself why you want to exercise and how it makes you feel. Practising mindfulness and visualisation can help maintain your motivation in the long run.
Remember that motivation can ebb and flow, so it’s essential to be patient with yourself and stay adaptable. If you ever find your motivation waning, revisit your goals, adjust your workout routine or seek support from friends, family or a fitness community. Ultimately, consistency is key to re-establishing an exercise routine after a period of inactivity.