Five steps you can take today to stay motivated to exercise forever


Struggling to get up for your morning run? Can’t get motivated to move without your regular gym sessions? We’ve all been there. Here are five proactive things you can do today to get motivated, stay motivated, and get rewarded for exercising at home.

How do you stay motivated to exercise? It’s easy to set goals for yourself to move more and eat better – this usually starts well. However, it becomes more difficult to maintain that momentum when winter arrives. Even more so when a global pandemic hampers your efforts to exercise outside or at the gym.

So, how can you get motivated and stay motivated to exercise through challenging times? Here are five things you can do today to build strong exercise habits that will stay the course.

Step 1: Decide why you work out

Michelle Segar is the author of No Sweat: How the Simple Science of Motivation Can Bring You a Lifetime of Fitness. She says it’s important to focus on the immediate positive feelings we get from exercise, as opposed to vague future goals such as, “I want to lose weight” or “I want to get fit”.

You can make exercise a daily habit by focusing on immediate benefits like, reducing stress, increasing your energy, making friends and boosting sleep.

“The only way we are going to prioritise time to exercise is if it is going to deliver some kind of benefit that is truly compelling and valuable to our daily life,” says Michelle in an article for The Guardian.

So, find your why today and the rest will follow.

Step 2: Set yourself up for success

There are many things in your day that may keep you from working out, especially now that we are staying home, homeschooling our kids, and engaging in online meetings. Physical or mental illness, work or home stress or other factors may also prevent you from exercising.

Segar’s advice is to find out what works for you, even if it’s a lunchtime walk around the house. You can even do a 30-minute workout video. Set yourself up for success by analysing your current situation and finding a time and activity that’s easy to achieve.

Step 3: Make exercise a priority in your daily schedule

Make an action plan where you decide when, where and how you will exercise. Then, anticipate when things may get in your way and plan how you will get motivated again.

“Most people don’t give themselves permission to prioritise self care behaviours like exercise,” Segar explains. She suggests that you create a time that’s just for you and do the best you can.

Perhaps something else to consider is to make a commitment by signing up for an online live class or planning with a family member to work out together or reach a certain goal.

Step 4: Change the way you think about exercise

Segar says that you don’t have to enjoy every bit of exercise you do. Even if it’s difficult, remembering the benefits can keep you going. She adds that willpower isn’t enough to keep you motivated for the long run.

“If you need willpower to do something, you don’t really want to do it,” Segar says. To get around this issue, rather think about exercise in terms of what you can get out of it. Ask yourself: “How can I benefit today? How do I feel when I move? How do I feel after I move?” Remind yourself how exercise makes you feel when it’s difficult to get up and get going.

Step 5: Create a good home workout environment

The outside world can seem scary right now and that can also keep you from exercising. Stay motivated by knowing that you have everything you need to exercise at home. You can build your own home gym by using a few household items, or you can jump your way to a healthier heart by getting – or even making – a skipping rope.

Stay motivated to exercise at home with the Vitality Home-Workout channel, where you will find fun workout videos for everyone. It also features exciting virtual running and cycling events to help you move more and stay connected.

Get rewarded for getting active

If you need even more motivation to get moving, we have the perfect special offer for you. Until the end of July 2020, you can get up to 100% back on fitness devices from Fitbit, Garmin, Huawei, Polar, Samsung or Suunto with Device Booster. Read more about how to boost your exercise routine.

How do you stay motivated to exercise? Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and we’ll include your motivation tips in our next article.

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