I’m a routine kind of girl.
I wake up at the same time each morning, make my bed right away (yes, really), leave at the same time every day, head to work, go to the gym right afterwards…. you get the idea. I have so many routines that I am used to following without even thinking about; I always make my coffee in the morning, take a shower, and then go back downstairs and pour my coffee before getting ready. Who in the world thinks about little things like these?! I like to have a plan, and stick to that plan. Sometimes change can be good, and we should mix things up; but most of the time I do like routines. Routines keep things consistent, organized, and you always know what to expect. I am definitely a “type A” personality. Routines can be great- but what happens on the days where you have that routine set up, but you just don’t feel like following through with it? What happens on the days where you don’t have energy and just feel exhausted?
Try out these tips for ways to stay motivated!
- Remember why you started- When I ran the Running for a Brighter Future 5K this past weekend, whenever I found myself starting to slow down or feeling tired, I tried to focus on my motivation for running the race. Since the race benefited students with disabilities, I put pictures of two of the students I frequently work with on the back of my race number. When I felt tired during the race, I thought about why I was running, and pictured my students. Focusing my attention on something other than myself or my desire to finish helped me to stay motivated.
- Small steps- Try telling yourself you only have to do something for a few minutes and then you can quit or come back to it later. Most of the time, you will start doing something, and then realize you are being productive or are experiencing success and your desire to quit will fade away!
- Make sure your expectations are realistic– if you were planning to run 12 miles but are feeling exhausted, switch out your long run for another day. Tell yourself you only need to run 3 miles, or will try to run 5 (depending on your usual workout routine, etc). Strive for high expectations, yes, but not unrealistic ones. Saying “I’m going to sit down and write my lesson plans for the next month tonight,” or “I usually run 3 miles, but today I’m going to go for 14,” or “I’m going to cut sugar out of my diet completely” will only leave you feeling frustrated because you won’t be able to realistically accomplish those things.
- Focus on what you CAN do instead of what you can’t do or what you haven’t done yet.
- Just do it. Thanks, Nike. Some days you do just need to take a deep breath and make yourself do what you know you need to! Without struggle, there is no progress.
- Think about how good you’ll feel when you’re done! I’ve never finished running and thought, “Man, I wish I had watched tv and eaten ice cream out of the carton instead,” or I’ve never said after a lesson, “really wish I hadn’t taken the time to plan that one out!”
- 90% mental- So much that we do in life is mental. We always think about being strong physically, but it’s also important to be strong mentally. If you tell yourself you do can something, you are much more likely to be able to accomplish your goals. So tell yourself you can do it! Limitations only exist if you let them.
- Music– I love listening to music, both when I am working out and when I am just relaxing around the house. Listening to music when I am running energizes me and motivates me to keep going or run faster. When I’m not motivated to work or do other tasks, music can be a fun way to distract myself while I’m working. Listening to music can also be relaxing- I use playlists on my phone, or listen to different stations on Pandora. This workout playlist really helps to energize me when I am running!
- Quotes- I find inspiration through quotes- they are simple, quick reminders for me of what I can do, and the person I am striving to be. I recently took the time to look up some of my favorite quotes and inspirational phrases and write them down on index cards. I hung them all over one of my walls in my room, so now I can find motivation any time of the day! Pinterest is one of my favorite places to find inspiration! (Careful, it’s distracting…) It might be a little hard to see what the quotes say, but here is what my wall looks like:
I recently downloaded this iTunes app and am loving it! Every day they provide you with a new fitness motivational quote. I look at it each morning; it’s been a great way to add a little extra motivation to my morning and kick off my day on a positive note!
Question of the Day:
What do you find motivation in?? Share your ideas below!