We’ve all heard it before; cardio is vital to our overall health and well being. Not only does it keep our heart, lungs and muscles healthy, but it improves our mental health. Researchers even recommend that the average adult gets a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. One way to reach this goal is by investing in a cardio exercise machine for your home. Investing in aerobic equipment helps you eliminate excuses and overcome roadblocks that keep you from exercising!
So, if we know it’s an essential aspect of a healthy lifestyle, then why is it so hard to motivate ourselves to get moving!? Today we are going to talk about how to stay motivated during workouts and look at some of our favorite tools that help us keep our eye on the prize. If you struggle to stay motivated during your cardio workouts, you must try these seven game-changing tips:
Don’t overwhelm yourself by creating goals that are too big or out of reach. Focus on small, incremental goals that are attainable! Once you start hitting your goals, you will be motivated to keep going.
Fortunately, economists and psychologists have been studying how to crack the code of what compels us to repeatedly do something we don’t always want to do. Here are some of the best strategies to boost workout motivation.
Sure, some people might be motivated by vague goals such as “better health” or “weight control.” But if that’s not doing it for you. I advise you to make the benefits of working out more tangible, such as by treating yourself to a smoothie or an episode of Game of Thrones afterwards.
“An extrinsic reward is so powerful because your brain can latch on to it and make the link that the behavior is worthwhile.”
Creating a neurological “habit loop,” which involves a cue to trigger the behavior (setting out your spinning shoes next to your bag), the routine (making it through spinning class) and then the reward. “An extrinsic reward is so powerful because your brain can latch on to it and make the link that the behavior is worthwhile,” he explains. “It increases the odds the routine becomes a habit.”
Over time, the motivation becomes intrinsic, as the brain begins to associate sweat and pain with the surge of endorphins — those feel-good chemicals released in the brain that are responsible for that “I-feel-freaking-amazing” rush you get after a great gym session. Once you’ve trained your brain to recognize that the workout itself is the reward, you won’t even want the treat.
We can make promises to ourselves all day long, but research shows we’re more likely to follow through with pledges when we make them in front of friends.
You can up the ante even more by signing a contract agreeing to pay a pal $20 every time you skip Pilates. “It’s a simple notion of changing the cost,”. “I say I’m going to commit to do something for a certain amount of time, such as exercising 30 minutes three times a week for 12 weeks. If I don’t do that, I’m going to pay some kind of penalty, whether it’s monetary or the embarrassment of having friends know I didn’t live up to my word.”
Devotees of positive thinking have long promoted visualizing the benefits of a behavior as a motivational strategy. For example, when I’m deciding whether to get out of bed to go running in the morning, it helps to imagine how the sun will feel on my face as I run around the reservoir. Or how delighted I’ll be when I see my new muscles developing.
“After you imagine the obstacle, you can figure out what you can do to overcome it and make a plan.”
But such feel-good fantasies are only effective when accompanied by more realistic problem-solving methods.
After identifying your wish and visualizing the outcome, you have to identify what’s holding you back — a technique “mental contrasting.” In one study of 51 female students who claimed they wanted to eat fewer junk food snacks; researchers asked each woman to imagine the benefits of nibbling on better foods. Those who identified the trigger that made healthful snacking difficult for them — and came up with a plan to reach for fruit when cravings hit — were most successful at sticking to their goal.
Feel too tired to go to the gym after work? “After you imagine the obstacle, you can figure out what you can do to overcome it and make a plan,”. For example, you can switch to morning or lunchtime workouts or go straight to the gym instead of stopping at home first.