How to Trick Yourself Into Exercising

If exercise was easy, everyone would do it.

Have you ever been lying in bed on a gym day, procrastinating, coming up with every reason in the book as to why you shouldn’t go to the gym?

Every regular gym-goer has days like this. In fact, it’s surprising the amount of reasons our minds can devise to keep us from doing something that is actually healthy and beneficial to the body. It’s okay if your need to stay in bed sometimes overpowers your need for fitness, but if you suffer from this procrastination and lack of willpower regularly, you might consider taking action.

Just as there are a million reasons to skip the gym, there are also a million reasons to go. Here are a few ways to trick yourself into exercising.

Adjust your goals. Instead of hitting every machine at the gym, adjust your goals to merely show up. Once you get to the gym, you can set goals appropriate for that day (I suggest making these goals after you have warmed up and are in the mood).

Try smaller workouts. If you break your workouts into sections for different days, like ‘back, shoulders, biceps’ one day, ‘chest, abs, and triceps’ on another, and cardio and lower body on the last day, you don’t have to feel overwhelmed to do everything in one sitting and can actually form a fitness habit.

READ MORE: Five Safety Precautions for Returning to the Gym

Put your workout clothes on when you wake up. Dressing the part is half the battle. Wearing your workout clothes will make you much more likely to actually exercise.

Lie to yourself. Tell yourself that today is the day you are going to meet your gym crush. Literally, whatever it takes to get you out the door is what you should do.

Stop thinking and act. If you don’t allow yourself to lie in bed thinking about working out, your brain won’t even have time to think of excuses. Just get up and go, and save the worrying for later.

Reward yourself. If there is something you are really looking forward happening on a gym day, deny yourself that thing unless you go to the gym beforehand.

Barring fitness injuries, rarely has anyone ever regretted going to the gym, over sitting at home on the couch. So if you are feeling complacent and unathletic, chances are you need the gym more than ever. So do whatever it takes to trick your mind and get those endorphins moving!

Published by karenmsutton

HSS Orthopaedic surgeon in sports medicine | Mother of 4 amazing children | Team physician for USA Women's Lacrosse | ACL injury expert

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