Today, Part II – where I share a few more tips (if you missed Part I, the link is at the bottom) that have helped me muster up some momentum to get myself to the gym … in hopes that they may help motivate you, too!
Bring what you need. Nothing takes the wind out of my sails more than arriving in the locker room, only to discover I have forgotten one of my three absolute necessities: water bottle, iPod, and swimsuit and towel for the steam room afterwards.
Although not proud of it, on the rare occasion where one of those items is missing: I have seriously been so disheartened by this turn of events that I literally turned and walked right out of the gym without working out! Shame on me, I know – but that’s my point. If it’s hard for you to go, it doesn’t take much to tip the scales over to the “I’m so not doing this today” side.
Pack your bag ahead of time. Especially if you plan to try and do the early morning thing, make sure it’s stocked the night before. I’m half asleep at 5:15 a.m., when I pull my hair into a ponytail, slide on my workout pants, grab my gym bag and stagger out the door.
When that alarm goes off, if I know my stuff is not ready, and scattered all over (virtually guaranteeing I’ll be missing some crucial element when I get there) … it’s all the excuse my tired self needs to hit the snooze and skip the gym trip for the day.
So prepare! You can do it! Plus, the ritual of getting your gym bag stocked and ready to go the night before will help psyche yourself up to follow through the next morning.
Mix it up. One big advantage of going to a gym vs. owning a piece of cardio equipment at home is the variety of options you have.
For example – while not a big fan of stationary bikes, they’ve come a long way, and can actually be kind of fun now that they’ve added the TV screen where you pick a course you “ride” on with other racers. Select an oceanside ride, through the forest, whatever strikes your fancy.
I usually do two different types of cardio machines for a combined total of my 30 minutes. It proves to be more distracting that way, and the faster the time goes, the better!
Don’t overdo it. The Fitness Guru’s would likely recommend a more aggressive approach.
But the way I see it, if you push yourself too hard – it won’t be the least bit enjoyable, and you won’t stick with it.I’m the first to admit that I don’t set the bar very high for myself: cardio machines, 30 minutes, 3 times per week. That’s my little goal. I’d love to add some weight lifting to that, and maybe someday I will. But for now, I reckon that my modest 90 minutes of activity is much, much better than doing nothing!
And if I feel really lousy and it’s just not working for me on a particular morning … I wrap it up a few minutes early, and hit the steam room. Hey, at least I made it to the gym, right?
I wish you the best. You can do it!
In case you missed it, check out “The Gym: A Real Person’s Guide to Getting There” Part I