Motivation – to provide someone for a reason for doing something
Not motivated to exercise? Don’t feel like it? Too busy, cold, tired?
So often I hear “I don’t feel motivated to exercise”. The definition of motivation does not even mention feelings. So why do we need to feel motivated to exercise? Moving is one of the best things that we can do for our bodies, yet only a quarter of the Australian population regularly exercise. It just doesn’t make sense…. Or does it?
Somewhere along the line our reason to exercise has become emotional and our reason to continue regularly exercising has also become emotional. The problem with exercising for emotional reasons is that it’s difficult to make that last for years on end. Emotions come and go. Feelings change. Emotion alone cannot give a big enough reason to support a regular life time exercise habit. Do a Google search on “Not motivated to exercise” and you will see just how many people have tried to fix this issue AND the motivation tactics are mostly about feelings and emotion. Feeling good in a new pair of jeans just won’t do it long term – those jeans will only be new once and then where does the motivation go?
So how do I motivate myself? In the same way that my long-term members motivate themselves. I never question whether I will exercise – I just get on with it. There’s no feeling involved – like brushing my teeth a couple of times a day. It just happens – it’s a habit that serves me well, so I keep doing it.
If I do think about its for toned and strong muscles, for bone density to resist osteoporosis, for good balance and coordination, for a strong heart muscle, to reduce stress, decrease the chance of mental illness, to sleep better, to have more energy during the day. These are all great reasons – logical reasons that aren’t based on feelings or emotion.
Sure, feelings come into it. The flow of exercise endorphins feels fantastic, the sense of achievement after a session feels awesome, feeling good in my favourite jeans is amazing. They are all feelings and motivation to exercise but they are not long lasting and on a cold winters morning they don’t provide a good enough reason to get out of bed and get moving. Knowing that when I get home I have achieved something good for my health, combined with a 30 plus year habit is enough to keep me motivated.
So next time you are thinking of hitting the snooze button or sting on the couch think about some REAL reasons as to why you exercise. And after its done you can say I Just Did It