For as long as I can remember, winter is the time where people feel that it is okay to mope around indoors and lose motivation when it comes to their workouts.
But if you showed up to work unmotivated for 3 months of the year I doubt that would go down very well with your boss, so why would you do it to yourself when it comes to your own health and wellbeing?
The key to staying on track all year round is motivation and setting the right goals for yourself. Everyone is different and everyone responds to different types of motivation, however if you only have the one goal of ‘losing weight’ in mind, this can be quite detrimental to a fitness program.
When you are focusing on a negative, ie. feeling forced to train because you are unhappy with something about yourself, it is likely that you won’t find exercise enjoyable. Even if you do need to lose weight, it is good to also include other goals that allow you to enjoy exercise such as training for your first Miss Muddy Obstacle race, the Sydney Running Festival, learning how to do a chin up or getting out more push up reps.
Andrew Pap’s top fitness tips to keep you on track all year round
CHANGE IT UP
This tip even has a study to back it up! A study by the University of Florida found that people who modified their workouts twice a month were more likely to stick to their program compared to those who change their programs whenever they wanted too. The study concluded that people enjoyed the variety.
If you are someone who struggles with motivation, I would suggest mapping out your workouts a few weeks in advance. That way it’s methodically planned to suit your goals, gives you purpose, focus and you can plan your recovery.
The reason I like the above study is because it is good to stick to a program that gives you measurable results so you can legitimately see yourself getting fitter and stronger- seeing progress is awesome motivation after all! Then before you get bored or your body adapts to the same stimulus, you already have the next program ready to go.
TRAIN FOR SOMETHING
Dragging your feet into the gym with the one goal of losing weight can get tedious for anyone!
My clients who I train (through my outdoor training business ‘Battle Fit Australia‘) and myself thrive on events (Obstacle Races, Running Events and weekend getaways throughout the year, as it keeps us motivated and excited throughout the year. We participate in these events as a group, furthering the camaraderie we build during training.
If you have an event to train for than it should dictate what type of training you need incorporate into your normal routine. Keeps things fresh and fun!
Aiming for challenging events will see you improve not only physically but also mentally. When you’re truly testing yourself you need to be at your best, so you must not only take physical training into account but also recovery and nutrition. Seeing better performance due to better nutrition and smart training is very rewarding.
LOOK THE PART
Sometimes to help motivate yourself for a workout is to simply look the part.
I know that as soon as I put on my SKINS and runners I automatically get into the right headspace for training and helps me to be motivated.
If you are a runner, a new study has found that the SKINS A400 leggings have significant improvements in running economy on subjects. This means that runners burn less energy while wearing the compression, and therefore can use that extra fuel to run harder or for a longer distance.
Furthermore, it’s been tested numerous times to show that SKINS compression improves recovery, so you can perform at your best the next day whilst everyone else hobbles around in pain.
PICK IT UP ON THE HOME STRETCH
I know by the end of your workout you are probably starting to feel tired, but I always try to kick it up a notch on the home stretch because then I create a mindset of ending the session strong!
If you feel that you have done a strong workout, and lets face it, the end of the workout is often that part that you remember, you create a positive exercise memory which motivates you for the next session and the next challenge!
ABOUT ANDREW ‘PAP’ PAPADOPOULOS
SKINS Athlete and Owner of Battle Fit Australia