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EXPERT ADVICE: HOW TO BECOME (AND STAY!) MOTIVATED TO WORK OUT

EXPERT ADVICE: HOW TO BECOME (AND STAY!) MOTIVATED TO WORK OUT

You’ve decided to get back in shape this year? The biggest challenge is not in getting going, but in keeping at it! Here are five tips that will help you stay motivated and achieve your goals.

1. Establish an action plan

Above all, it is important to establish a short (3 months), medium (6 months) and long term (1 year) action plan. For each of these periods, you need to determine goals that are S.M.A.R.T. (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and timely) and also making sure they are quantitative. For example:  I want to lose 2% body fat in the short term, run five kilometers in the medium term, and maintain a healthy habit of exercising 3 to 4 times a week in the long run.

2. Respect yourself

It is scientifically proven that people who are less harsh on themselves are more successful than those who are more demanding. In other words, allow yourself some flexibility. If you are tired one day, rest rather than work out; this will allow you to be optimal next time. But make sure it does not become a habit! Skipping a workout out of respect for oneself is very different from being lazy. Just be careful and make sure you are doing it for the right reasons.

3. Stay focused during your workouts

It is essential to give it everything you have during a workout, to make it effective as possible. Whether going for high intensity or moderate intensity activities (such as Yin Yoga), your focus should be the same. You must agree to get out of your comfort zone and tolerate the discomfort of exercising. This will boost your confidence and pride levels and working out will become something positive. Speaking of positivism, also make a workout playlist with your favorite songs!

4. Reward yourself!

Avoid working out by simple obligation and don’t forget to reward yourself. Give yourself little moments of pleasure. For example, a hot bath or a spa break are good for the body AND the soul! Be creative and reward yourself for achieving your goals in the short, medium and long term. Your motivation will soar, guaranteed!

5. Overcome the obstacles

You will surely have to face more difficult times during your process. When you feel down, remember why you decided to go to the gym in the first place. These reasons must be intrinsic and written somewhere so that you do not lose sight of them.

Have a good workout!

About Paméla Boucher

Title: Kinesiologist and naturopath

Holding a Bachelor’s degree in kinesiology and a naturopathic studies diploma, Paméla Boucher is a personal trainer specializing in fitness, weight loss and the adoption of healthy lifestyle habits. For more information, visit her website at www.pamelaboucher.ca.