Finding the right workout is hard enough already, but sticking to a routine is even harder. To get into the groove of things and to continue to exercise on a regular basis, it would be nice if all I needed was just the imagined image of a healthier me, but sometimes that just doesn’t cut it. And I’m not really into the whole Pinterest/Instagram/Tumblr “fitspo” thing, with all of those repetitive “you can do it” quotes and photos of girls with 6-pack abs. Looking at already toned women makes me want to crawl into a hole and devour a pot of bacon mac and cheese (remember, never leave out the bacon!). Because comparisons are the devil—not the sole act of eating away your feelings with bacon—it’s always comparisons. That’s why we need other motivators in our lives!
So here are 8 things that get my lazy butt moving, and that can hopefully help motivate you to get your workout on too!
1. Buy/make new workout clothes.
As if we all need another excuse to go shopping. The more the merrier, as they say! I don’t know who they are, but they know what’s up. It’s like going back-to-school shopping, except it’s back-to-exercising shopping; everyone loves to show off their new purchases!
And you can even try whipping up your own apparel out of old t-shirts, like I did here with an old college shirt of mine. Save money and flaunt your DIY skills the next time you hit the gym. Search YouTube for some easy tutorials, they’ve got TONS!
2. Find new music that makes you feel like you’re in an epic movie.
Or in a music video, commercial, the olympics (lol), etc. A soundtrack to your (workout) life, perhaps. You know those scenes in movies where someone is on a high speed foot chase, propped up against a sweet backdrop, each of their steps hitting the pavement to the beat, and are looking super cool? I just imagine that I’m that person. And you can too. You can pretend to be one of those ripped ladies in a Fitbit or Nike commercial, and look like a boss! Or you can even imagine you’re an olympic athlete and everyone’s cheering you on while you are biking away to Kendrick Lamar. Imagination is key! For all I know, you might already be one of these cool people!
My personal faves are hip-hop, rap, and the occasional 1D hit. Maxed out at a high volume with some sweet headphones, I’m more than pumped to get going and stay going. That’s not a phrase.. haha.
Brace yourselves folks; here is my (super-originally titled) “Workout” playlist I had on my phone since junior year of college. I legitimately didn’t change anything for this post:
- Old School Love – Lupe Fiasco (feat. Ed Sheeran)
- Heartbreaker – Justin Bieber
- All That Matters – Justin Bieber; Jbiebs’ Journals album is my guilty pleasure (even though his career wasn’t lookin’ too hot back then).
- Na Na – Trey Songz
- Heart Attack – Trey Songz
- Wait For a Minute – Tyga (feat. Justin Bieber); I skipped this song a lot, but I don’t know why I never actually removed it from the list haha.
- Kings & Queens (Throw It Up) – SoMo
- Oh, Hell – SoMo; Wait, who is this guy anyway?
- High School – Nicki Minaj
- I Wish – Cher Lloyd
- 2 On – Tinashe
- Ride – SoMo; This one is literally about baby making and it’s not upbeat at all… yet it still made the list. I think I listened to this when I cycled at the gym LOL (if you listen to it you’ll lol at me, not with me, at me).
- Killin’ It – Cher Lloyd
- Trumpets – Jason Derulo
- Heroes (we could be) – Alesso; Good movie-foot-chase song.
- I Can’t Stop Drinking About You – Bebe Rexha
- John Doe – B.o.B. (feat Priscilla)
- Steal My Girl – One Direction; That’s right, 1D taking me home.
- Black Widow – Iggy Azalea (feat. Rita Ora); Did the base on this song break anyone else’s headphones??
- Touchin, Lovin – Trey Songz (feat. Nicki Minaj)
- Somebody – Natalie La Rose (feat. Jeremih)
- Don’t Tell ‘Em – Jeremih
- Goodbye – Who is Fancy
- New Flame – Chris Brown
- It Was Always You – Maroon 5
- Paris – Magic Man
- Animals – Maroon 5
- Loyal (East Coast Version) – Chris Brown; I’m still so confused why I have the east coast version and not the original version…
3. Wear your workout clothes to bed.
Or set them out the night before. Most days, I find myself too lazy to even put on a sports bra and change into my running shorts. If I can’t even muster up the energy to do that first step, how am I ever going to make it out the door? I usually feel more amped up and motivated at night, telling myself I’ll workout the next morning; so having my clothes on already (or laid out) makes it easier to hit the pavement when I’m feeling less motivated when I wake up. And fyi, workout clothes in bed is actually super comfy!
4. Give yourself real rewards, like real delicious food.
Honestly, I’m a firm believer in not needing to justify why I am eating what I’m eating. If you want it, just eat it. But sometimes it can be even more satisfying to eat your whole kitchen after you worked up a sweat.
^Although taken a while ago for an account I had with my friend, take a look at my caption.. When I was working out 5 days a week, I would treat myself to food like this on a weekly basis. Yes, someone might think this is a little counterproductive, but to them I say: hey, it’s nacho business, hater.
5. Plan a fun night out.
Making plans, like dinner or having a party with friends, always motivates me to exercise in the morning because I want to look my best when I’m out. When you look good, you feel good. It’s a little superficial sounding, but it’s painfully true. Yet, it’s all a mind-game thing too, but it works for me! I know I won’t loose 5lbs after one run, but I mentally believe my body is fitter; if that makes any sense. Plus, just knowing that I worked out in the morning, makes me feel extra accomplished and thus happier as the day goes on. Exercise is a natural mood booster and helps your body release lots of endorphins, aka it makes you feel extra good based off of science! And who doesn’t trust science.
6. Find out what YOUR thing is.
When you find something that gives you energy, makes you sweat, raises your heartbeat, AND is super fun: stick with it. It won’t even feel like exercising or working out anymore. I used to play golf a lot and while that’s not a high intensity sport, I burned so many calories walking those huge 18-hole courses, whilst carrying a 30lb bag of clubs and swinging my arms and body around too many times for me to count. Though, my lazy self drove around a cart more often than not and I’m also not the greatest golfer, so I haven’t actually been on the course in a while, ha!
However, I’ve been playing a lot of ping pong lately with my family, and it’s something I’m actually not that bad at! It consists of so much non-stop laughing and I never want it to end because it’s so entertaining! My family’s competitive nature feeds off of this game. It’s not until we’ve tired out the “just one more” response to a finished game, that we are dripping in sweat (gross) and feeling more pooped than ever. Sometimes we play so intensely, my muscles are sore the next morning! There are so many fun active things to do, you just have to figure out what your favorite is!
^Snapchatting my #ootn. Ping pong attire=pjs and running shoes!
7. But variety is very helpful too.
Switch up the machines you use at the gym, try biking on your favorite running trail (or vice-versa), find a community tennis court or swimming pool near your house/school/office, or explore and go on a hike with friends. When you have more options, you won’t get bored as easily. It’s like when I’m at a buffet; there are so many different types of food in front of me, I go crazy and have to try everything and anything. Now let’s all just try to apply that feeling to our workout routines…
8. Invest in a fitness tracker.
I own a Misfit Shine. My friends laugh at it because it sounds like a FitBit wannabe, but it’s actually pretty useful! Once I got it from my bro for Christmas, I couldn’t stop using it. I can check if my daily goals are met on the app and it’s cool to see the progress I’ve done each day and even over longer periods of time. It also doubles as a sleep monitor, which helps me determine how many Z’s I’m actually catching each night (sadly, it’s not too many). I don’t wear it 24/7, so the following stats don’t include everything I’ve done, but it’s close enough!
^I graduated on June 14th and literally stopped exercising right after lol.
^Take a look at when I worked out like crazy a few months ago in college, and then stopped working out like crazy this last month. The fluctuating charts motivate me to get back out there. Challenge accepted, Misfit!
One final thought:
Exercise and eating right comes hand in hand, but eat what you actually enjoy.
Personally, I hate oatmeal, I can’t eat salads dry, yogurt is just ok, I’ll never make a complete switch to whole wheat everything, and I think a handful of nuts is a sorry excuse for a mid-day snack. If you love all those things, that’s great! But sometimes people force themselves to eat foods that they are told to eat just because they are considered to be the best of the best, nutrition wise and so forth. But if you don’t like it, don’t eat it! Likewise, if you are craving something, just eat the darn thing and DO NOT FEEL GUILTY. There’s no use in depriving yourself when food was created to be one of life’s greatest pleasures. Yes, making healthy choices is important when it comes to dieting, but take the time to find out what nutritious foods you really enjoy. You’ll be surprised what’s out there!
LOADED ACAI BOWLS!
FARMER’S MARKET GOODS!
LOX AND BAGELS!
NICE CREAM! (vegan ice cream made from frozen bananas)
FRESH SPRING ROLLS!
AND SALMON & ALL THINGS COLORFUL!
Sorry for yelling in your faces, but those are just a few really healthy things I’ve grown to love and even crave! Oh, and you know me and my smoothies…
Also, I personally don’t like it when people say eating healthy will be a lifestyle change, because that sounds freakin’ scary as heck. I never ever ever want to give up ANY foods just because “it’ll be better for me.” I like to have things in moderation, but I overeat more often than not. AND I LOVE IT! It’s all about satisfaction, people!
Now it’s your turn. Think about the things that you already enjoy in life (like music, clothes, food, friends) and use them to your advantage when it comes to working out. Note: this is the only time using and taking advantage of your friends is ok, because no one is going to get hurt! Unless you force them to bench press hundreds of pounds with you when no one clearly ever wants to do that…
Find what motivates you and run like the wind! Literally. But make sure you aren’t doing anything to impress anyone other than yourself. You’ve probably heard that a million times, but it’s true. I never overthought what I was doing when I was working out like crazy in college and I only wanted myself to get healthier. My exercise routine became more like a habit, and weight loss results came out of nowhere because I wasn’t thinking about how others perceived me.
Do you guys have any more motivational fitness tips?? I’d love to hear them! And I would love it if you would share this post with all your awesome friends and family too!