For a select few, skipping the snooze button for a crack-of-dawn run or ditching happy hour for a post-work spin class is a breeze. And then there are the rest of us. If getting through a workout sounds about as appealing as washing dishes, you’re not alone: Even exercise regulars have days when they’d rather do anything else. We asked Jennipher Walters and Erin Whitehead of Fit Bottomed Girls and NYC fitness blogger Kayla Kleinman to tell us how they make their time at the gym more enjoyable when it starts to feel like a drag. The next time you can’t bare to step on the treadmill, or need that extra push to hold your plank for another 15 seconds, circle back to these four tips.
Try Shorter Sessions
If it seems like there aren’t enough hours in the day, instead of scheduling (and then cancelling) an hour-long workout, try focusing all your energy into a jam-packed 15 to 20 minutes to make the most of your time — and get it over with sooner. “It’s all about upping the intensity of your workout by choosing full-body moves that work multiple muscle groups at the same time,” say the FBGs. Tabata workouts — 20 seconds of work followed by 10 seconds of rest for a total of eight rounds per move — are a great place to start.
Sneak It Into Something You Really Love
After a long day, even a fun workout like busting a move at Zumba can lose some of its appeal. If you’re starting to get fitness fatigue, think about what you like to do beyond the gym, studio, or park. Turn any workout into a girls’ night by enlisting a BFF (or two) to sweat with you, and catch up over post-run smoothies. If a date with the Real Housewives is your saving grace after work, turn your viewing into a couch-side reality TV workout (do 10 jumping jacks every time someone cries). As the FBGs say: “Every little bit adds up!”
Write Yourself A Note
There are a lot of ways to trick yourself into waking up early to work out, and we’re adding another FBG tip to our list: after you set out all your gear (or hop into bed wearing most of it), grab a pen and fill colourful Post-Its with your favourite motivating quotes (check out Pinterest for ideas) or a list recapping your health and fitness goals. Stick them on your phone or alarm clock so that groggy morning-you has some extra moral support—or at least feels extremely guilty about hitting snooze for the third time.
If all else fails, motivate yourself with a sweet reward. Kleinman likes to buy cute workout outfits that get her motivated to get up and go: “It doesn’t have to be anything expensive, just something you feel confident in.” Or add some swag to your gym bag with some beauty treats – we’ve got the lowdown on make-up goodies that will survive the sweatiest routine here.
– Erica Smith