Fitness plans are begun with the best of intentions. Gyms and fitness clubs are notoriously the busiest in January, right after New Year’s resolutions are made. Monday tends to be the busiest day of the week for workouts. However, as the week (or the year) continues on, motivation can start to wane.
Don’t let this happen to you! The following are six effective ways to stay on track with your fitness goals:
1. Check Your Motivation
The best reason to get fit and stay fit is a desire to be the best version of yourself possible. While outside motivations such as wanting to “show an ex what they’re missing” can be effective in the short term, it isn’t a good long term motivation. Finding internal motivations based upon a desire for better health and well being are always best.
2. Do Activities You Genuinely Enjoy
Another key to sticking with a fitness plan is doing activities you truly love (or at least like.) There are dozens of fitness activities to choose from, so keep trying new ones until you find a fit.
3. Mix Up Your Fitness Plan
Even the most enjoyable fitness activities can get “stale” after awhile, so make a concerted effort to change up what you do every few weeks or months. You might even consider rotating through different fitness activities throughout the week to ensure that you’ll stay engaged. Doing a variety of activities can also help with avoiding workout plateaus and stimulating results.
4. Pace Yourself
Yes, you want fitness progress, but remember not to push yourself too hard, too fast. Not only can rushing your workouts result in injury, but it can also put a damper on your motivation. Trying to do too much too soon can exhaust your body and your mind. Better to ramp up your progress gradually, enjoy sensible gains and stay on track.
5. Get Support
Going it alone on a fitness plan can deflate motivation for many people. Consider getting a workout buddy or joining a fitness class. Playing team sports is another way to enjoy group fitness participation. You might also hire a personal trainer. At the very least, check in with your spouse, partner or a trusted friend regularly for support and motivation.
6. Chart Your Progress
Sometimes fitness gains can happen so gradually, it can be hard to tell if anything is happening at all. That’s why charting your progress is so valuable. Track your fitness progress in terms of weight loss, fat loss, inches lost, or muscle gained. Keep a log book and consider taking photos of yourself in the mirror at weekly or monthly intervals. Seeing evidence of your progress can be a great motivator for staying on track.
Lastly, don’t forget to take the time to celebrate your fitness progress! When you reach a milestone, reward yourself with a massage, a diet “splurge” day (within reason), a spa day or by buying an affordable “wish list” item. Fitness progress should be celebrated, and it’s another excellent way to stay motivated and stick to your plan.