Top Ten Tips For Staying Fit When You Aren't Feelin' It
You might think that fitness instructors wake up every day with a spring in their step and an insatiable desire to work out. The truth is that we, too, sometimes struggle with motivation. If you follow me on Instagram you know that lately, this social isolation situation has me working overtime to try and keep my head in the game. In fact, this past weekend, I literally had to force myself to get moving--and my heart just wasn't in it. That scared me because normally I am a high-octane, endorphin junkie who is always looking for new ways to challenge myself, so I began to take a good look at why my usual "go hard or go home" attitude was failing me. What I discovered was two things:
1) I am an intrinsically goal-driven person who thrives on challenge and friendly competition. With nothing on the horizon to train for right now my workouts feel a little less purposeful.
2) I am more driven by community than I realized. I thrive on the energy of a room full of sweaty people and it pushes me to keep going when I'm at my threshold.
I know I am not alone---I have talked to clients and fellow instructors who are dealing with the same issues. So what do we do? While nothing is foolproof, I have found a few things that work for me--especially on the days that I am just not "feelin' it." Give 'em a shot and let me know what works for you. Remember, at the end of the day, it doesn't matter WHERE you train--it matters WHY you train. Here are my top ten tips:
1.Stay on your schedule: If you are someone who normally gets up and gets your workout done before the sun--stick with that. Consistency is key so try not to hit the "snooze" button just because your days look a little different.
2. Look the part: Ditch your jammies or baggy sweats and put on your spandex and sports bra. When you look the part, you feel the part.
3. Avoid distractions: It can be easy to zone out and watch Netflix while you're working out at home--but don't. Stay focused on what you are doing in order to maximize your results.
4. Stream it: The exception to the above "no distraction" rule is if you are streaming a workout. Most major gyms and studios are offering a variety of live and prerecorded classes to help you get your sweat on, and even interact with others. Check out our JoyRide Zoom and Instagram Live classes for a variety of options both on and off the bike.
5. Get creative: Just because you don't have your gym equipment doesn't mean you can't get your workout in. Use soup cans, wine bottles, or water-filled milk jugs for dumbbells. Try a large detergent bottle for a kettlebell. Paper plates or towels make excellent gliders and, if you have a set of stairs, you can perform everything from step ups to calf raises. Need ideas? Message me and I'm happy to help you craft a workout with things around your house!
6. Go outside: Not only will an outdoor run, walk, or bike ride elevate your heart rate--it will elevate your spirits as well.
7. Never underestimate the power of your body: A body weight workout is a highly effective way to stay in shape. Don't believe me? Do 20 burpees, 20 pushups, 20 squats, and 20 crunches, repeat 3 rounds, and then get back to me.
8. Think small: Something is better than nothing so instead of just throwing in the sweat towel if you aren't motivated, try restructuring instead. Break things up by hitting your cardio in the morning and strength training in the evening--or vice versa. Or, set a timer for just 15 minutes and get moving. If at the end of that time you want to stop--do. But chances are that once you've done 15 minutes worth of work, you'll probably keep going.
9. Remember your "why": Some events I wanted to participate in have been cancelled, and I am no longer teaching 12 classes a week. Without those motivating factors in place, it's been a little harder to push myself. That's when I have to remember my "why," which is to stay healthy for myself, my family, and my clients, because eventually things will return to normal and I want to look and feel my best.
10. Give yourself grace: Things are different, uncertain, and a little frightening to be honest. Be kind to yourself and understand that there are some days you will not feel like "you." That's okay. Do what you can with what you have to work with and be patient with yourself as you learn to navigate these new "norms." Reach out if you need help--I'm always happy to FaceTime a workout "together," and trust me, there are days when I need that extra push too!