There’s a reason why you rarely see fit people walking around the city:
I’m sure you can think of many more inconveniences and difficulties.
Anyone can drum up enough emotional resolve to get started, but staying the course is another matter. It takes deep, lasting motivation and dedication. How do you develop this?
Yeah, yeah… I know. It’s a healthy lifestyle.
By hitting the gym regularly, you’ll live a longer, healthier life; you’ll be more energetic; you’ll ward off disease; you’ll be less likely to get sick; you’ll be less stressed; and all that other good stuff.
But let’s be honest.
Those reason aren’t incredibly motivating after a long, stressful day, with your couch beckoning and TV glowing.
Well, in this article I’m going to share some of the things that motivate me whenever I’m on the fence.
These emotional triggers will help you remember why you started working out in the first place and will get you fired up to get your butt off the couch, into the car, and onto the bench.
Table of Contents
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I’m not just talking mental satisfaction–I’m talking the physical high that results from exercise.
In fact, the brain-altering chemicals released by exercise act similarly to opioid drugs, making a workout a healthy, natural way to just feel damn good every day of your life. (Click here to tweet this!)
So, next time you need some motivation to get your workout in, just think of how physically satisfied you feel after!
While I’m all for “doing it for you” and not having to “prove yourself” to anyone, we all take satisfaction in doing what other people say we can’t.
And we’ve all known people that were compelled to criticize and doubt us whenever we undertook a positive endeavor. You know the type: you tell them you’re starting a new workout program, and they question why, roll their eyes, snigger, or otherwise tell you they just don’t think you can do it.
Well, you can use them as workout motivation: get in the gym and prove them wrong, and relish the look on their faces as you lose fat, build muscle, and build the body of your dreams. (Click here to tweet this!)
In fact, why don’t you take a minute right now to write down a list of the people that you want to silence. Who cares who they are and why you chose them–just write them down. Then, the next time you’re thinking of skipping a workout, scan back over the list for a nice jolt of motivation.
Let’s face it: the number one reason most people start working out is to look better to girls or guys.
That’s why I started hitting the weights nearly 12 years ago: my original goal wasn’t just to become “cuter,” but sexy. You know, that primal, universal, irresistible kind of attraction that bypasses all critical filters and makes people physically want you. (Hey, I was a teenager–cut me some slack)
Well, I don’t really care about that anymore, but it was a strong motivator in the beginning. Nevertheless, even the humblest of guys can’t help but smile when a beautiful girl wants to feel his arms, and even the classiest of girls can’t help but enjoy it when all eyes are on her at the beach. And there’s nothing wrong with either of these things!
Well, when you’re training correctly and dieting properly, every workout you do results in minor improvements that, over time, transform you into a bolder, sexier version of yourself. (Click here to tweet this!)
And don’t think this only matters if you’re single, either! While emotional connection is vitally important for a good relationship, research shows that ongoing physical attraction plays a major role in relationship stability.
So, if you’re having trouble dragging yourself into the gym, realize that the workout you’re about to do is going to make you a little bit sexier. And enough “little bits” add up to a whole new irresistible you.
Lifting weights doesn’t just build muscle, it builds self-confidence as well.
Sure, some people turn to the dark side and become egomaniacs, but us mentally balanced humans just become happier, calmer, nicer and nicer-to-be-around people.
The self-confidence boost extends to all areas of our lives as well. Don’t be surprised if working out regularly also makes you want to push the envelope in other areas of your life and strive for more…and believe you can actually do it. (Click here to tweet this!)
So, just as you make yourself sexier one workout out a time, you also make yourself more confident and secure.
Seriously. Just watch it now.
So…are you ready to lift?
While we may not be able to fulfill our childhood fantasies and become full-blown superheroes, we can become super-strong. And imagine we’re superheroes. 🙂
Whereas I started working out to look good, I now love getting stronger. I can’t think of a better start to my day than the intense rush that comes with deadlifting, squatting, and benching hundreds of pounds.
So, next time you’re looking for some workout motivation, just think about lifting some heavy ass weights and feeling you’re king (or queen!) of the mountain.
How many workouts have you missed because your mind seduced you into thinking you were too tired? How many reps have you missed because a voice in your head said you had done enough already? These aren’t physical failures–they’re mental ones. And they relate to something much bigger than working out.
If I were to choose one trait that sets extraordinary people from ordinary…in any field or activity…it wouldn’t be intelligence, wisdom, talent, luck, or genetics. It would be mental toughness. The will to finish what has been begun. The discipline to not give in to temptations. The willingness to make sacrifices. And the ability to maintain high levels of performance when things are going well (the avoidance of complacency is an often overlooked, but important part of long-term success).
It’s no surprise that mentally tough people make better athletes, but research shows that people with high levels of perseverance and grit lead the pack in just about any endeavor, from spelling bees to military boot camps.
The bottom line is the more mentally tough we are, the better our lives will be. You can’t develop true commitment to or consistency with anything if you have a weak will. And you can use your workouts to help build up your will and thus become mentally tough.
You see, when you show up to the gym every day and put in the work, no matter the reasons to do otherwise, no matter how much mental resistance you feel, no matter how drained your body is…you’re transforming more than your physique. You’re transforming your very being. (Click here to tweet this!)
So, when you’re starting to convince yourself to miss a workout, stop for a second and recognize the simple fact that you don’t want to go is why you have to. If you don’t, you’re making yourself mentally weaker; if you do, you’re strengthening your will.
Did this help you get some workout motivation? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!
+ Scientific References
- Duckworth, A. L., Peterson, C., Matthews, M. D., & Kelly, D. R. (2007). Grit: Perseverance and Passion for Long-Term Goals. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 92(6), 1087–1101. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-35184.108.40.2067
- Heyman, E., Gamelin, F. X., Goekint, M., Piscitelli, F., Roelands, B., Leclair, E., Di Marzo, V., & Meeusen, R. (2012). Intense exercise increases circulating endocannabinoid and BDNF levels in humans-Possible implications for reward and depression. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 37(6), 844–851. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psyneuen.2011.09.017
- Dietrich, A., & McDaniel, W. F. (2004). Endocannabinoids and exercise. In British Journal of Sports Medicine (Vol. 38, Issue 5, pp. 536–541). BMJ Publishing Group. https://doi.org/10.1136/bjsm.2004.011718