Exercise Motivation: As Elusive As A Double Rainbow…

March 7th, 2011 by Amy Gonsalves Leave a reply »

I was thinking to myself as I ran this morning before D.O. it Bootcamp! that there must be a reason I was one of only four people out and exercising at 5:00am.  (Two walkers, Two Runners, 1 Dog who I’m not counting attached to the other runner.)  I remembered my mom asking me a number of months ago if I ever skip a workout.

And I realized maybe you’d be interested to read how I get myself to work out at ungodly hours or inconvenient times six days a week.

 1.       I think of a reason for now that will get me to work out now.

It may be a blood sugar reason (if I have started a temp basal and skip the workout I’ll be high), it may be a scheduling reason like today’s 4am wakeup call (don’t have time to do it later), it may be a separate motivation altogether (I think my energy level is better at bootcamp if I’ve already gotten a run in beforehand).  Whatever that reason is, I value it and use it to get me that much closer to the start line.

2.       I think of a reason for later that will get me to work out now.

The “later” here can come in many many different forms: it can be 3 months away when I run a marathon; it can be 20 years from now when I schedule an appointment for a bone scan to evaluate my bone density.  It can be an upcoming trip, an upcoming 5k event, an upcoming season and clothing options that accompany that season.  It can be a dinner out later in the week. 

There are many different future goals and times and events that I know are coming, but what I pay attention to is how much I will appreciate THEN at that point what I invest NOW in my workout.  It’s a big part of my motivation.

3.       I stop thinking and DO IT.

I can procrastinate a workout a lot better than I can procrastinate writing a blog—and that’s saying something!  I can procrastinate a workout so well that some days I opt to not set a temp basal in advance since I can’t depend on when I will actually begin my workout. 

Yet in the end the only thing that really matters is whether or not I actually did work out.  So one of the most effective techniques I’ve found to motivate myself to work out is… to… go… work… out.  Just get out there and go.

When I have what feels like a potentially stressful month coming up, I will sit for 15-30 minutes in front of a calendar and write down what workouts I will do what days.  (For marathon training this kind of planning is essential.)  This helps me later in the month when my mind is going a mile a minute to simply look at the calendar and do as it instructs. 

When I STOP THINKING and START WORKING a lot of things fall into place.


Then again, I am what some might call a Professional MotivatorMaybe your March Challenge includes me!  Think  about it:  Do you need some additional accountability to someone when it comes to your workouts?  Do you want some extra help planning what to do what days or how to get across a certain finish line?  I’d love to work with you no matter where you are if you want to face Spring and Summer with a more fit self.  Check out the Be Fit page at Diabetes Outside!

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