Is this the year that you finally put all of your excuses aside and start to work towards some of your bodybuilding aspirations? Well if the answer is yes, you are going to have to be equipped with some motivation to keep you going. There will likely be days where you just don’t feel up for it, whether it be trying to lose fat or build muscle.
When it comes to these challenging days, you need to ask yourself how badly do you want to see those results and attempt to pull out some motivation from within. However, there are many people who unfortunately end up quitting. They are usually feeling good within the first week or so of working out and sticking to a diet until they realise that it seems too difficult to sustain that lifestyle. Everyone that goes to a gym is aware of the January newbies and you’ll notice that come February, most of them no longer go to the gym.
You don’t want to fall into the same pattern as these people so ensure that this is the year that you focus in on your goals and begin to work towards them. Let’s go through what I think are some of the best ways to stay motivated.
1. Take Progress Photos
If you truly are making progress from week to week or month to month, it’s incredibly important to take pictures as you can visually see how far you have come. This will provides you with an even greater sense of motivation to keep on pushing forwards. It’s always great to see where you began on day one, where you are now and where you’re going to be in the future.
2. Find a Workout Buddy
Going to the gym alone isn’t particularly a bad thing. In fact, I know that some people prefer to workout on their own. However having a workout partner allows you to take your workouts to the next level. They can be there to help you out on heavy lifts or it may just keep you motivated to know that there’s someone else doing a similar thing to you.
It keeps you on your toes and prevents you from becoming okay with mediocre results. Your gym buddy may motivate you to strive for even better personal development. A training partner also ensures that you are going to be there for each session as they are relying on you to turn up, regardless of whether or not you feel like working out.
3. Hire a Trainer
Being someone who is completely new to the whole fitness world can be quite a daunting experience as you would have heard so many different opinions from different people about what it is that you should be doing. You may not even be on a training routine that helps you towards your bodybuilding or fitness goals.
This is why I would recommend hiring a personal trainer. If you find someone who is good at their job, they will take you through it step by step and answer any of your questions along the way. You will be given a workout routine that is specifically designed just for you and they can even give you a diet plan that is going to support you in what you are doing in the gym.
4. Try a New Training Method
Once you’ve been doing a training routine for a certain amount of time, your body may not be responding to it as well as it was at the start. Every once in a while, it’s a good idea to change up the way you are training. Change around the order of exercises and do different rep ranges and so on.
You will find that your progress will become stagnated unless you give your body something new to respond to. Replace your workout routine after every six weeks. Do a week or two of a different style of training then go back to your usual routine and repeat. This is also a fantastic way to keep your mental state fresh as you’re doing something new every once in a while.
5. Take Part In a Transformation Challenge
Transformation challenges create a sense of community amongst people who are trying to achieve similar fitness goals. Try signing up for one and enjoy the process of entering and meeting new people. It also gives you something to work towards that is more tangible as there’s usually some kind of cash prize.
6. Take Your Workouts Outdoors
Being someone that does a lot of cardio, you may feel constricted in the walls of a gym, so why not try a session outside? Again, this one is about trying to keep things fun and exciting to prevent you from feeling bored, which often leads to a huge lack of motivation. Who knows, you may actually prefer to workout outdoors altogether.
7. Visualize Success
Always keep in mind what it is that your goals are. A lot of the time when you feel as though you have lost motivation, it is because you haven’t been visualising what you want to achieve. Specifically, think about where you want to be further down the line. You can do this by putting yourself in a quiet environment and imagine what it would feel like to reach your goal. Try to visualise as many little details as you possibly can to make it seem realistic.
Do this a couple times throughout the week and I guarantee that you won’t lose sight of your goals.
8. Train in the Morning
One of the biggest excuses that people come up with to not workout is that they don’t have enough time and for a lot of people, that is true. However, all it means is that you have got to find the most suitable time for yourself to train.
For the majority of people, an early morning workout is going to be the best time. It ensures that no matter what you have planned for the rest of the day, your workout has been done so there’re no excuses. If you simply don’t have enough time to be able to make it to the gym and then on to your other responsibilities, why not try a little workout at home each morning.
All you’d have to do is wake up a little earlier and you can start the day off in a positive light.
9. Take a Class
Signing up for a fitness class is a tremendous way to find new sparks of motivation as you are opened up to a world of different activities that stop your normal workouts from becoming boring. Some of the most popular classes include things like yoga or spinning. The main thing is that you find it enjoyable and you will sustain a positive relationship with exercising which will, of course, lead to more results. A social aspect to working out is also introduced which, again, ensures that your training sessions don’t have to be dull.
10. Join a Fitness Group
Not into group classes? It may still be beneficial for you to find a community of like-minded people. Whether this community is a running group or simply a gathering of fellow gym-goers who come together every so often to talk fitness, bringing social support into your life is important.
If a fitness class doesn’t suit you, a great alternative is becoming a part of some sort of fitness group where you get together every once in a while to discuss fitness and what it is that you are trying to achieve. Surrounding yourself with people who have similar goals to you is going to motivate you to carry on with your pursuit of fitness.
11. Create Your Own Home Gym
Don’t want to spend a lot of money on going to the gym? Well, you could always invest some money into buying some gym equipment to use in your home. You can be sure to stay on top of your fitness aspirations this way as you can workout in the convenience of your own house.
There is no need to get too fancy with what you purchase either. Grab some dumbbells, a mat and a few other small bits and over time, you can buy things as you go to create your own mini gym.
12. Download a New Playlist
Music is an incredibly powerful tool that you can use to your advantage when working out. However, after some time of listening to the same songs over and over, you will probably notice that you are no longer motivated by them.
Make sure to update your playlist regularly as the songs that you listen to can have an effect on your attitude towards working out.
13. Buy New Gym Gear
Feeling and looking good in your gym attire is something that not a lot of people tend to think would make any significant difference to how motivated they are. But when you feel great, your mood is uplifted and you are more likely to perform better in the gym.
The fact that you have invested money into your fitness goals strengthens the fact that you know this is exactly what you want to be doing. You could even purchase some supplements that will benefit you and be inspired to keep going to the gym.
14. Try a New Gym
The environment in which you train in is profoundly important for the mental side to training. If you feel as though you are easily becoming tired of using the exact same equipment and seeing the same people, try going to a different gym. You may only want to do this every once in a while to change things up. Most gyms offer a pay-per-session scheme or a day pass so you don’t have to sign up to any monthly subscriptions.
15. Set Daily Goals
Setting goals, are you are already aware of, is one of the best things that you can do for yourself when it comes to motivation. But if you want something to get you by on a day to day basis, try setting small goals every day.
Write down one objective that you have in mind for each day, it can be anything you want. Just make sure that you know you can complete it. Start off with things that are can be easily accomplished, such as drinking more water throughout the day and build it up over time to slightly more challenging tasks.
Doing this means that you are working towards your fitness goals in one way or another every single day. You can make every day a mini achievement to keep you motivated on the path to reaching your ultimate destination.
16. Track Your Stats
Tracking your progress is something that you should be doing from day one. Whether it be a number of inches you’ve gained on your arms or the amount of fat that has some off your waist. It provides a great sense of accomplishment when you look back six months ago to where you are now.
Keeping note of your workouts is also something I would highly recommend as it allows you to be aware of when you are and when you aren’t progressing. If there’s ever a time where progress stagnates, take a look at your training and diet and try to figure out what you need to change to keep on moving forwards.
17. Set Smart Rewards
Sometimes a little treat after completing a hard task is motivating as it makes you feel good about yourself. You associate the hard work with an instant reward and you’re more likely to want to work hard more often.
Choose your rewards accordingly to the task that you carried out. If it was a fairly easy and simple accomplishment, keep the reward small. But if it was something huge, then keep the reward big too. However, make sure not to treat yourself for nothing. The only way that you get the reward is by earning it.
18. Take a Break
If you really are having a difficult time even getting yourself to the gym, you could actually benefit from taking a step back and having a break. A lot of the time you get so wrapped up in training hard and having no days off that you forget your body needs time to recover.
Take a week off and let your body rest and have some downtime. Just make sure that once the week is up that you’re ready to hit the gym again otherwise you could easily end up taking too much time off. This can actually make it pretty difficult to get yourself back in the gym altogether.
19. Try a Pre-Workout Supplement
Sometimes you just need that extra boost of energy to get you through a rough workout. The best pre-workout supplements include things such as Vitamin B and caffeine to give you that mental focus to help you crush your workout.
Using supplements doesn’t mean that you are guaranteed to have a good training session. They can most definitely help you to push yourself especially on the days when you are feeling low on energy.
20. Try New Exercises
Trying out a range of new exercises can be an exciting thing to do as your body isn’t used to doing them so try changing up the exercises you do every now and then. For example, if you always do the flat barbell bench press, try a flat dumbbell bench press instead one week. You can do this type of thing when any exercise to prevent your workouts from becoming tedious.
Adding some diversity to your training sessions will have a huge impact on how motivated you are and you will see some exceptional results.