9/14/16

Get motivated



You’ve likely heard the saying “you won’t regret a workout when it’s over.”
Getting the workout started, however, is often the hard part.

It may seem like motivation is something that you have to find and either you have it or you don't.
When you have motivation - you crush your workouts.
When you don't have motivation - it's a struggle to get started and to stay committed to your workout.

Sometimes, the body has the energy to train but the mind has a dozen excuses to skip (or not finish) the workout.
And sometimes the mind is eager to accept the upcoming workout challenge but the body struggles to find energy with each movement.

If you agree with one or both of the statements above, you are normal.
Every athlete, from age grouper to professional, will fight for motivation at least a handful of times throughout the season.

To help you out, here are three simple ways to get yourself motivated when mind says “let’s go” but the body screams “heck no!”

A proper warm-up
Give yourself a chance to wake-up your body before you convince yourself that you are too exhausted to train.
To rev your cardio system as you transition from being sedentary to moving your body, allow 5-15 minutes of mobility and dynamic exercises to target the key muscle groups being used in your upcoming workout. Hip hikes, light foam rolling, walking lunges and leg or arm swings are a few examples of simple exercises that you can perform before your workout to slowly increase the heart rate and to improve range of motion.
This is extremely valuable for early morning sessions as well as when you workout after a long, stressful day of life.
Also, during peak season, you'll find that you need a bit more of a warm-up before you start feeling energized before a main set. Don't count yourself out of a good workout based on how you feel in the first 15 minutes of your warm-up. Give yourself 10-15 minutes more to get the endorphins flowing and you may surprise yourself.

Music
For an instant pick-me-up, there’s research to support that music can positively affect motivation and mood.  Don’t believe me?
Turn on your favorite jam before a workout and then envision yourself fist-pumping your way down your next race finish line.
Just like that - you have motivation.
Regardless if you prefer an enlightening or funny podcast to distract your brain during a workout or need the strong beats of techno, hip hop or alternative to get your heart pumping, the stimulating effects of music can help with many emotions, including minimizing low-spirited thoughts that often decrease the motivation to train.

Diet
It seems obvious that what you eat (or don’t eat) can affect your energy levels, digestive system and mood but with so much on your daily plate, nutrient timing, snacking and real-food meal planning can often be an afterthought for athletes.

To initiate a positive dietary change, always prioritize what you will eat before and after your workouts. By giving your workouts the spotlight, the effort is made to focus on food as fuel, which will help you train well and recover better. To ensure that you never train on empty, be sure to stock your workout bag with extra sport nutrition so you are always prepared. 
As for when you aren’t training, plan and prep a variety of wholesome real food options for easy meal prep so you can keep your body energized and in good health.