Photos by LA PHOTOGRAPHY
I can’t stress enough that being motivated to work out lately has been extremely hard. It is when I am extremely busy that I feel like it is the worst. I wake up super early and then go to work and the last thing I want to do when I come home is exercise. Now that swimsuit season is almost over and we are approaching the fall/winter, this can be even more less motivating. Has anyone else been in that funk or is currently in it? I know that I feel 10 times better when I do eventually work out, and a lot of the time the struggle is actually putting on work out clothes. Once that is done I am much more likely to actually go through the work outs. Over the last couple of months I have realized that when I am stressed a great walk is something that immediately helps and gives me so much relief. If I try to work out just a couple of times a week I notice a huge difference, and it also makes me feel like I am able to accomplish so much more that week. Not only can working out be good for you physically, but emotionally and mentally as well. I have put together some tips below that I personally use to help me get motivated even when I am way too busy, and my to do list is a mile long.
- Start Your Work Outs on Monday: This is a great tip I use when I am trying to fit more work outs into my routine. I know it is a Monday and all you want to do is come home and lay on the couch after work. I promise you though if you start your work out on a Monday your week will already feel that much more accomplished and motivated. It is something about the start of the week that just puts it off to a great start if we are able to get a work out in early on in the week. I know all I want to do is curl up on the couch and watch The Bachelor with a glass of wine, but try to get in a work out before that and then reward yourself!
- Get New Work Out Clothes: Maybe this is just me but I feel like if I have new work out clothes I am more motivated to put them on and actually work out. Don’t be those girls who just wear work out clothes and have their hair and makeup done because they like the clothes, actually work out. Every time I go on vacation or have a special event I like to go shopping for a new outfit. If you want to try to work out more in your busy life and stay motivated, get some cute work out clothes to go with it.
- Take the Longer Route: If you can’t fit in a work out before or after work during the week, then take the longer routes at work. I park in a parking garage which is a good distance to my desk. I use this time to get in some steps for the day even if it just getting to my desk. Instead of the elevator you could take the stairs instead. If you take the longer route you will burn calories without having to do much extra that is completely different from your normal routine.
- Your Work Outs Do Not Have to Be High Intensity: I personally do not like to do high intensity work outs. Boot camps, spin class, and other high cardio workouts do not do well for me. I have back trouble so those aggrevate it more than help it. A lot of people think if you aren’t running or sweating a ton then you are not getting a good work out. I disagree and honestly prefer to take walks outside which I think get me the same result as running. Do what is most comfortable for your body and don’t try to over work yourself, especially if you are just starting or getting back into a routine.
- Utilize Your Lunch Break: I am not one of those people that will wake up before work to get a work out in. I applaud everyone who can, but I am one of those people that pushes the snooze button about 5 times. After work can sometimes be not motivating to work out, but I have found using my lunch break is a great time to get in a little mid afternoon exercise. We have a gym at my work building and the monthly fee is so cheap that I feel bad if I go a week without stepping foot in it. If you also have a gym at work I would utilize this because this is a great accommodation to have. I try to go at least once or twice during the week and do yoga. If you don’t have a gym at work then going outside or walking a couple of blocks around the buildings is great to do as well. It is nice to get some fresh air while also helping your body at the same time. If you can put aside just 30 minutes out of your hour lunch break dedicated to moving around, it will for sure be better than nothing.
- You Don’t Have to Belong to a Gym: People think that you have to belong to a gym or some type of studio in order to get a great workout, and I don’t necessarily believe in that. Yes I do try to utilize our gym at work during lunch but 90% of my workouts are just walking Buffalo Bayou and then doing some mat exercises in my room. There are tons of YouTube videos where you can get a complete work out without even leaving your house. You do have to be disciplined, but I think having this available to do at your own leisure is perfect. Utilizing free resources and your own body strength as weights can make a huge difference, and it doesn’t cost anything. If you do already belong to a studio or gym that is motivation to work out when you are busy already because you are paying for it after all!
- Get In the Zone: Whatever you need to get motivated and into the zone then do that. This could be listening to some rap music on your phone or maybe a juicy podcast. Everyone has their own way of getting into the zone when they are trying to work out. Depending on what type of mood I am in depends on what type of music I want to listen to. Sometimes I can be listening to really loud music, but other times I use this time to pray and just listen to nature when I am walking outside. Find what works best for you and do it.
- Look Towards the Next Event: You always hear of the gym being so crowded in January because working out is always on people’s New Year’s Resolutions. After the holidays and eating to your hearts content people are more motivated to work out after eating whatever they want the past couple of months. In the spring time people are getting ready for swimsuit season so that is their motivation. During this time of year it is hard because a lot of us won’t be wearing swimsuits again until next year. In order for you to still stay motivated I would look towards the next event you have in your life. I feel like we are motivated for events that are noted and are planned for. This could be the next wedding or even your next date night or girls night with your friends. Looking forward to events and wanting to look your best is a great motivation to work out when you are too busy.
- Stay Calm and Reward Yourself: Don’t be too hard on yourself. It takes time and patience to start getting into a routine of working out when you are busy. The worst thing you can do is feel stressed and just think of working out as another big to do item on your list of a million things. Incorporate it into your weekly ritual and don’t be too hard on yourself if you miss a couple of work outs that week because you were too busy and just needed to relax. Don’t miss out on all of the happy hours or desserts either. It all comes down to moderation, and if you are doing well I truly believe in rewarding yourself.
We are all so busy during the week with work, friends, family and all of our commitments. Taking the time to work out does not have to be a chore or make you stressed out. It actually should be the opposite and can be done if you follow these tips. Over time you will be looking forward to having that little time for yourself and working out even when you are too busy. I hope you all enjoy these tips that I use and please let me know what some of yours are.