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How to conquer those moments when you just can’t find the inspiration to work out!

Everyone who works out knows that there will be times you just don’t feel like exercising. It doesn’t matter how motivated you are, how long you have been working out or how much you love being active, it is a simple fact of life that you will have days when getting moving is a challenge. What you choose to do at these times can make the difference between staying in shape or starting a downward spiral that will take a toll on your fitness level.

I want to address this issue beyond the “just do it anyway” type of advice and give you a few super techniques that can push you over even the most difficult slump.

1) DO IT ANYWAY, BUT TAKE IT EASY. There is a big “gap” between doing nothing, and doing a full-blown super workout. When you are tired or don’t feel like working out, the thought of doing a hardcore workout can be very “intimidating” and working yourself up to actually doing it can be impossible. So if you don’t feel like working out, go for a lighter workout. If at some point you feel like picking things up, go for it. But only do it if you feel like it.  Refuse to judge yourself if you choose to stay at a light to moderate level.  If it’s easier to get motivated to do a light workout and you know from the start that’s all that’s required, you are much more likely to get started. Although a super workout is ideal, a lighter workout is still great. You will get your workout; you will keep the habit, and will still get good results. For example, if it’s cardio day and you don’t feel like running, go for a light to brisk walk instead. If it’s strength training day, perform less reps or utilize only 3/4 of the weight you normally do.

2) FOCUS ON THE PLEASURABLE PARTS. Focus on the aspects of exercising that you enjoy the most. For example, remember how great you feel when you finish a workout!  Not just the feeling of accomplishment that you have done it, but the physical energy that you feel. Your endorphins are flowing, you feel good, energetic, ALIVE!! And that’s a feeling that you will only get when you do your workout. (And by the way, a light workout will give you those same feelings.) Also, focus on the exercises that you like, rather than the ones you don’t enjoy so much.  Keep thinking about those specific exercises and look forward to when you get to those in your workout.

3) CREATE A PLAYLIST OF GREAT WORKOUT SONGS. I’m giving away one of the greatest tips that’s in my motivation e-book, but here it goes: Make a tape, CD, or playlist of songs that are motivating for you and only listen to it when you workout. This is a great technique that I have been giving my clients for years with amazing results - especially for their cardio workouts. Your mind works largely by association. If you do one thing whenever you do another, your mind will associate the two and the feeling brought about by one will be associated with the other.  Now if you only do one thing whenever you do another, that association becomes even more powerful. So if you always listen to some of your favorite songs when you work out and only when you work out, your mind will strongly associate the two and the same feelings of joy brought about by the songs will be linked to your workouts. You will find yourself looking forward to working out just because the whole experience feels great.

4) JOIN THE CHAMPIONS TEAM. Remember that working out when you don’t feel like it is what will separate you from the rest and guarantee your success. Everybody faces challenges from time to time. Even world-class athletes!  There is a saying that goes: “champions are made on the off days”. Everyone can workout when they feel great and motivated.  It is those who can get themselves to the gym when they don’t feel this way that become champions and achieve amazing results. Look at those challenging times as opportunities. Because those are the times you are given a chance to join the elite champions team that make it through their workouts no matter what.

I hope you find these tools useful to push you through those tough times.


Eduardo Dias.