You're running on the treadmill, staring off into space and realise you are having absolutely no fun at all. Boredom can be a major stumbling block in anyone’s workout routine and if you're not enjoying your exercise session it'll be so much harder to commit to.
So, get ready to fall back in love with your trainers. It's time to get back on target with a revamped, exciting workout routine. We talked with Jason Keigher, a certified personal trainer and women’s fitness specialist based in New York City, about how you can shake up your workout to keep things fun.
“New Years is a great time for recommitting or committing to an exercise routine,” he says. “Starting off the year with realistic fitness goals is a positive step, you just need to follow through with the exercise.”
To help you follow through without getting bored, we’ve compiled the best cheats on how to stay interested and motivated in your new workout routine.
The word "routine" automatically sounds safe and boring, but give it a chance. Having a planned time for a serious, sweat-pouring workout can help you stick to your goals and keep your eye on the prize.
As Jason says, “A routine is needed to reach your goals so you do not fall back into old habits. It can take time to develop exercise as part of your lifestyle.”
Since it can take a little bit of time to get in the swing of working out regularly, make sure you don’t get disheartened or bored at the beginning. Keep things challenging and have something to aim for each time.
Stay motivated, and take Jason’s advice: “Book fitness in your daily schedule like any other appointment.”
When first committing to a workout routine, though, be sure to set realistic goals for yourself. If you haven’t worked out in a while, ease back into it. According to Jason, “small realistic goals lead to long term success.”
If you need to shake up your workout programme or try something new, think about working with a personal trainer. Many trainers can teach you loads of different exercises and help keep you on task.
Jason says that working with a personal trainer “will make your exercise more enjoyable,” and we could not agree more. Having a trainer to support you in your goals and teach you new techniques makes working out that much more fun and effective.
If one-on-one sessions are a bit intimidating, try a small group class. Get that same high-energy atmosphere and personal attention for a fraction of the cost.
An easy way to stay interested in a workout programme is to get into group training. Group classes are offered for a variety of workouts. For a more relaxing setting, try yoga, or to really get yourself moving, try a mixed martial arts class or something like Zumba.
Jason says group classes are a great option to keep your workout enjoyable. Make new friends and build healthy competition. With friends to keep you accountable, Jason says, “You’re more likely to stick with your workouts.”
When working out with friends, have fun with it. Encourage each other to reach your goals, and turn working out into a light competition. See who can reach their fitness goals first!
One of the easiest ways to stay interested in what could otherwise be a dull, ordinary workout is to keep yourself entertained with music and television shows.
One way Jason keeps himself in the gym is through television; “I often will not watch my favourite TV shows unless I’m doing cardio while watching,” he says.
Doing a simple yet effective cardio workout during your favourite television shows is a great way to keep with your routine. Schedule a cardio workout every time one of your shows airs on television. If you don’t make it to the gym, you don’t get to watch your show.
For the more hardcore workouts that require a bit more attention, listen to music. If you don’t already have a workout playlist, you are missing out. Make a list of your favourite upbeat songs, like any Rihanna or Beyonce song. When you plug in your earphones, you will automatically feel a bit more of a diva and ready for anything.
Vary Your Workout
After doing the same workout routine for a while, exercise can become a bit predictable. That's why it's so important to vary things every so often.
Jason says, “You need to vary your workout to continue to stay motivated and reach your goals. If you’re interested in your workout you are more likely to stick with your workout. Try a new group fitness class, kettle bells, TRX training, power plate, cross training, or learn a few new exercises.”
If you’re trying something new, though, make sure you aren’t getting in over your head. Jason reminds us, “Make sure you ask for help if you’re not familiar with the exercise.” Jumping into some exercises without proper stretching or training could end in injuries.
To keep your mind stimulated while you work out, try out a form of exercise that makes you think. For example, learn martial arts or even yoga; you get the benefits of exercise while focusing your mind on good balance and form.
Keep It Fun
Most importantly, to keep exercise interesting, have fun with it! The best way to stay excited and active is to make working out so much fun that you look forward to it. Sounds impossible? Not at all.
Staying fit should be a part of your life, but that does not mean it has to be boring. Reward yourself with a night of pampering or that gorgeous new handbag when you reach one of your fitness goals. Turn your workout into a game.
Keep score with your friends, see who can run the fastest mile, or who can lift the heaviest weights? Or get a group of friends together for a game of footie. Try a new workout, or buy a hot new workout outfit.
And if your motivation is really taking a nose dive, a quick follow of these motivational Instagram accounts will see you making a beeline for that gym!
Start your new workout routine and, if you follow a few of these tips and tricks, pretty soon you will love staying fit.
Got any of your own tips on how to keep your workout exciting? Tweet us @sofeminineUK.