Updated: Mar 10
As a trainer, one reoccurring thing I tend to experience with potential clients during consultation, is people dreading having to do cardio, or hit the gym in general. We know exercise paired with a good nutrition plan can lead to healthy changes in our lives. Some of us are in dire need of this change, medically. But we still feel discouraged. Why is that? How can we change our perspective?
Why does working out feel like a chore to you?
One of the most common reasons is repetition. The idea of doing the same movements and showing up to do the same things, on the same days, is enough to drive some people crazy.
If this describes you, don't worry, there's a way to change that!
Tip #1 - Put the FUN in FUNctional Training!
There are so many alternatives to workouts these days. Information is one click away. Instruction can be one TikTok video away. Trainers can be available and accessible in one video call if you need extra help. Technology has ramped things up in a way that you can challenge yourself more, and increase the enjoyability of your training. Don't just go to the gym to bench press, squat, and deadlift. Utilize unilateral work, cables, kettlebells. I like to throw battle ropes into my sessions to keep me on my toes. Another great addition is punching bag & speed bag work. With my one on one clients who aren't athletes, I still tend to introduce cognitive exercises to improve reflexes and reaction time. They have no plan to compete in sports, but it's a fun change!
Tip #2 - Knowledge = Power!
I'm a huge fan of euphemisms so some of you may have heard this, if not, I'll explain.
"If all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail." –
That being said, if all you know is one way, your outcomes may be limited. Expand your knowledge and understanding of how your body moves. You don't have to go get a degree just to workout. But trying new exercises and lifting techniques can be extremely beneficial to you gains!
I had a client who hung out with powerlifting friends while trying to get into shape. All he knew was heavy lift, long breaks between lifts, and reoccurring back pain. He explained how it must be something he's doing wrong, or that working out just isn't for him. He never ventured outside of this type of lifting because the people around him swore by it. I introduced him to more volume, shorter rest periods, and hypertrophy training. After two sessions he admitted that this training was unlike anything he's ever done and will continue this training style. Though I left the facility to work on my personal business, and growth, I was able to introduce another person to some positive change.
Tip #3 - The "A" Word...
People are not too fond of the "A" word, but ACCOUNTABILITY means a lot! You don't have to be too hard on yourself to the point that you're anxiety levels are through the roof and you become your worst enemy. Still, hold yourself accountable. You know where you want to be. You have a goal in mind. Obstacles will get in your way but at the end of the day you have to know that this is still YOUR GOAL. Other people won't see it as personally or as important as you do. So keep that in mind and get things done!
Tip #4 - The Great Outdoors
Another great idea to get you out of the same old routine, is to throw in some outdoor exercise! Say no to the treadmill and "YES!" to a hike. Say no to the stationary bike, and yes to biking in a park or trail.
Personally, I cannot stand treadmills! (No pun intended.) There's no denying how effective they are for many. For me, I prefer sprints and a destination. Running from point A to point B and being able to measure my success and my goals visually are a big part of my personal routines. I still utilize gym based cardio for warmups and cool downs, but usually set up my cardio and agility sessions elsewhere. Plus, breathing in fresh air and feeling a breeze while you're working hard is a huge positive in my book.
Tip #5 - Compete! (With Yourself)
Don't fall into the trap of competing with other gym-goers, TikTok influencers, friends, etc. It may seem like motivation at first, but for many, it can be a downward spiral into giving up. At the end of the day, you may have different fitness levels compared to the people you have in mind. You may have ailments or previous injuries. Physical capabilities may be different. It's best to take a good look at your starting point, and compare your effort as you progress in your programs or workouts. This can be as simple as every week adding 5lbs to your heaviest lift, timing your sprints, or even comparing your confidence levels and how you felt during your workouts through journaling. All are effective ways to measure progression and regression! (There are many more ways as well)
There are many ways to get things done. Broaden your horizons, have fun, and track your beginnings.
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Keep working hard and improving your quality of life. You got this!