Fitness: Stay Motivated Stay motivated What it’s all about: 10 tips to conquer your reluctance: Tip 1: Choose a suitable projectTip 2: Stay realisticTip 3: Work your way up with small successesTip 4: Reserve time in your scheduleTip 5: Have a planTip 6: Give your project the right environmentTip 7: Share your struggles with perseveranceTip 8: Practise patienceTip 9: Willpower mattersTip 10: Reward yourself Defeat the natural enemy of your success for good The issue of motivation seems to lie in the perceived incompatibility between theory and practice. Because, of course you’re well aware why exercise is important. But while one half of the brain is making good resolutions, the other has long since become reluctant. If you often find yourself running excuses back and forth in your mind, it’s time to show your inner enemy the red card. Tip 1: Choose a suitable project Even if you keep hearing from friends and acquaintances how effective the ultra trendy sport of the year is, you’re better off going with your gut. Social media, as well as the internet in general, is practically overflowing with the latest trends and will try to make one type of exercise or another appealing to you. First and foremost, however, it’s what you feel most comfortable with that counts. If you have more fun than stress, it’s much easier for you to overcome your resistance and keep your motivation up. Tip 2: Stay realistic One of the biggest mistakes that many ambitious people make is that they set themselves unachievable goals at the beginning. This creates unintended pressure and hinders you more than it helps you. After all, you can’t climb Mount Everest just like that, and you should at least have completed an extensive training camp beforehand. Of course, it’s perfectly fine to set your sights on the ultimate goal of reaching the summit. But as with most successful paths in life, you’ll reach your goal much faster by taking several small steps. Therefore, divide your project into manageable stages. They give it structure and are also a really smart move mentally. Because when you realise that you have reached your interim goal, your motivation rockets. Let’s go! Tip 3: Work your way up with small successes Before you go all out, it’s a good idea to start with a few light exercises. Because your reluctant self needs a bit of a warm-up before you can really get going. The risk of injury is significantly higher when muscles are not warmed up. To avoid ruining your new-found motivation with a sports injury, it’s advisable to change a few habits in your everyday life first. You can easily integrate more exercise into your daily routine if you leave your car behind and walk manageable distances. Riding a bike is also a great way to keep your motivation high and reluctance at bay. Tip 4: Reserve time in your schedule To underpin the seriousness of your plan, you should set aside enough time in your diary. If you’re wondering about when you have the time for your project, write down all the day’s activities with their expected duration on a sheet of paper. Then check how much time is left when you subtract sleep and work / study / school. You can then use a substantial part of the time you have left on your project and in no time at all your inner doubter will become pretty subdued. You can give your motivation a real boost through visualisation. Tip 5: Have a plan So that you don’t fall back into your old patterns and don’t feed your reluctance, boost your motivation by planning out your project. Put it in your diary like any other appointment and make it a permanent fixture in your daily routine. This way it becomes more binding and gains in importance. After all, you wouldn’t simply cancel a necessary dentist appointment lightly. Why should your project be any different? Tip 6: Give your project the right environment Have you ever noticed that the more dynamic the sounds coming out of your car’s sound system, the harder you put your foot to the floor? That’s because rhythms stimulate your reactions. Which in turn means that music is extremely effective for your motivation and helps you to silence your inner doubter. Allow yourself the pleasure of putting together your ultimate playlist in advance and let yourself be driven by the beats of the music. It’s not just your body that automatically reacts; your mind will also instantly relax and be more receptive to persevering until you succeed. Tip 7: Share your struggles with perseverance There’s a good reason why people say that “a problem shared is a problem halved”. In terms of perseverance, there are advantages to not going the whole distance alone. For one thing, it’s much more fun to do sessions with a friend, acquaintance or colleague, with the prospect of a chat during the break. Besides, it’s much nicer to combine the practical with the pleasant and end the training session with a coffee. Plus, if you have an exercise partner, you’ll be less likely to give in to any reluctance you feel. You can fuel each other’s motivation by encouraging each other to persevere. Tip 8: Practise patience Be aware that Rome wasn’t built in a day either. Changing ingrained behavioural patterns permanently requires a bit of patience and grit. Don’t expect it to be easy. But don’t be too hard on yourself either. You might reach a point where you feel like giving up. In that moment, keep in mind that at this very point others made the choice not to pursue what you will one day be rewarded with. Even if you feel overwhelmed by your inner doubter, at some point in the near future you’ll know why persevering and not turning back was worth it. Motivation is a tough nut to crack. But at some point you will burst with pride because you didn’t just give up – because you will definitely get there! Tip 9: Willpower matters It’s possible that you won’t achieve the goals you have set for yourself or that you won’t achieve them in the way you had imagined. If your inner doubter interferes at this point, you have all the tools at your disposal to put them in their place. Because instead of feeling guilty about not having done enough to succeed, you can rightly claim to have always done your best. If you didn’t manage to reach your (interim) goal, it wasn’t entirely in your reach and you still have all the time in the world to continue working on your success. With the right mindset, you can keep your motivation at a consistently high level and won’t allow your inner doubter to question everything you’ve achieved so far. Tip 10: Reward yourself Just as a treat awaits a diligent dog during training, a reward for each stage achieved is another building block in the modular system called motivation. In order to strengthen your motivation instead of your reluctance, you can treat yourself to something at regular intervals with a clear conscience. However, it’s a smart idea to avoid anything that makes your training success melt away. Scoffing a greasy pizza after exercise definitely is counterproductive. However, following up your sports session with a wellness treat and switching off with a muscle-warming bath, good music, a glass of wine and relaxing fragrances is a reward for your hard work and endurance as well as restorative experience. Share your training successes on Instagram @chiefslife!