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How to find the motivation to exercise?

Why do I want to exercise? What keeps me going and what is the importance of exercise for me? If physical appearance or a single result is the only goal, motivation is difficult to maintain.

It is sometimes hard to find the motivation to exercise. It is cold, rainy and windy outside: “I cannot be bothered to exercise”. That’s the easy choice, but sometimes it is good to challenge yourself and do just the opposite. All is well that ends well and you feel great having made the effort in pouring rain.


Motivation can be divided into two parts: 

Intrinsic motivation, in which the source of motivation is intrinsic. We act based on our own free will, with no external rewards or sanctions and feel joy in what we do, for instance exercise. Intrinsic motivation is usually more sustainable and a permanent source of motivation. 

Extrinsic motivation means motivation dependent on our environment, the source of such motivation is not in ourselves. We do not necessarily feel joy in mere activity and have no motivation for activities such as exercise. The activity can be based on achieving rewards, such as positive feedback or a good result. Extrinsic motivation is often short-term and always ends when the goal is achieved. For example, a diet to lose weight – the motivation may fail as soon as the target weight is reached.


Consider these issues further when you want to motivate yourself to exercise:

Why do I want to exercise? What keeps me going and what is the importance of exercise for me? If physical appearance or a single result is the only goal, motivation is difficult to maintain. Try to find a basic reason for exercising - a healthier life and more energy, with children if you like, or relief for aches and pains, or just raising your general vitality.

Overly narrow guidelines and being unable to influence your exercise routine may also reduce your motivation. If exercise feels compulsory and is not done on your own terms, you are unlikely to become motivated. You can only exercise for your own sake, not others’! 
Exercise should be enjoyable and done on your own terms, if you want to continue it on a daily basis. 

Trusting in yourself and your own abilities is also a factor in your motivation. It is important to believe in what you do. A positive dialogue with yourself can do a lot of good if you feel you cannot be bothered. It is good to challenge yourself, get out of your comfort zone and decide that you can do this now! More self-confidence can often help us to make exercise integral to our way of life. When failures are not a negative experience but a chance to learn and you can cut yourself some slack, minor setbacks will not destroy your motivation. Everyone knows that exercise does not feel good at times, and it doesn’t always have to. When you can read your feelings and trust yourself, you will be able to accept fatigue. 

Self-confidence is a prerequisite for motivation. There is no such thing as an incorrect exercise goal. Each of us has personal strengths and weaknesses. In most cases, the key issue is to work on your strengths, but you should also find the motivation to work on your weaknesses when seeking to promote your health and well-being in a range of ways. 

Start with intermediate goals and work towards something bigger. No one can achieve their main goal in the blink of an eye. Instead, interim targets provide good forward guidance and help to keep you motivated. 

Such targets do not need to be drastic. For example, increasing your amount of daily exercise every week is an excellent interim target towards a bigger goal, which could be overall well-being. 

You have to take the decision! As I said above, we do not exercise or do anything else for the sake of other people. You need to find the required motivation and direction in yourself; you need to know why you want it in order to move in the right direction.


Read related posts:

Street workout for beginners

Lappset Fitness Park - as experienced by Fitness Instructor & Wellness Blogger Oona Tolppanen

Street workout is the new wave in fitness training

Oona Tolppanen
Oona Tolppanen
Athlete, Fitness Instructor & Wellness Blogger
"Festina Lente"
Aloittaaksesi keskustelun, on markkinointievästeet oltava hyväksyttynä.
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