Finding motivation to train, achieve and set your goals can sometimes be VERY elusive. I am sure we have all been there. It doesn’t even have to be motivation to train. It could be motivation to get something done that you just don’t want to do. Or that you don’t feel is critically important right now. So in no particular order here are some of the tips that work for me on what helps me keep motivated and training effectively even when the going gets super tough.
1. Keep Moving
Yep, don’t stop – don’t give up. The mere act of moving every day keeps the momentum. It creates the discipline for those times that you just don’t have the motivation to get it done. It creates the habit that is often needed when things get especially tough. I am not saying it is going to be easy. In fact, some days it will be super crappy and hard. Its those days especially that you need to just keep moving and create the habit and the discipline.
2. Find Your Why
Your why could be anything. It could be to inspire. It could be to not let yourself down. It could be to reach a goal you have set yourself. It doesn’t matter your why is YOUR finish line – no one else’s! Often if you find your why that can be enough to sustain you on those crappy days. Those days when the weather is horrendous, or you just don’t have the enthusiasm.
3. Find Your When
I am an evening/afternoon trainer. I just can’t effectively train first thing in the morning – I have tried so many times, but I just get injured, can’t perform and I just end up hating it. I love the getting it done so it’s out of the way, but I have learned over the years that for me I train better and more effectively later in the day. My tip here is to find the best time of day that works for you! This might be early morning first thing; it might be the middle of the day or the middle of the night – it doesn’t matter when. Find what works for you and your schedule.
4. Fuel Properly – Not Just During
Have you ever noticed when you eat crap for a few days (think super high fat, high sugar limited nutrients) how hard it is to train? How hard it is to get the motivation to do the session, let alone achieve the session? I know I have! It makes me feel super sluggish (and I am slow enough on a good day) and sick to the stomach. I know I perform so much better and easier when I fuel my body properly. This also goes for during those long training sessions as well. Anything over an hour and a half/two hours for me and I need to take on food of some sort during the session. I swear by fairy bread on super long runs – but that’s a story for another day!
5. Hydrate Properly – Not Just During
This follows on from making sure you fuel your body properly. When your body is dehydrated all of your systems suffer. Every single one! We are made up of mostly water you know! I am also a massive bucket sweater so I can never train at my best when I am dehydrated before let alone dehydrated during. Make sure you are hydrated with both fluids and electrolytes before, during and AFTER so you can keep being at your best.
6. Be Accountable
Some people can be accountable to themselves which is AWESOME others don’t. I often need a little bit of help in the accountability department it is one of the reasons why I have the awesome coach I do. I Like being accountable to someone for my training – it helps keep me focused and getting the sessions done. It also helps me be achievable in my goals and strategies. There are HEAPS of different ways to be accountable. It could be colouring off markings on a sheet, it could be keeping an excel spreadsheet, sharing on socials, keeping a log, going with someone. It doesn’t matter what the method is. Find one that helps you and stick with it! Remember if you need a little extra help being accountable you can let us know your goal HERE.
7. Sleep Properly
I am the FIRST to admit I struggle with this one the most! Sleep aids in the recovery of your muscles, joints, everything from top to toe. It helps you regenerate your energy stores and lets you be fighting fit to take on the next hurdle, goal, session (you get the idea). Sleep is essential. There are some awesome ways to help you get to sleep you can do meditation, breathing exercises or even listen to podcasts. Personally, on the nights that I can’t sleep cause my brain is in the way I tune into the Podcast called: “Sleep With Me” I swear by it! I never even normally make it through the intro, and I am out!
8. Allow For Rest
Not just sleep. Allow for “rest days”. Seriously those days with little to no training. Those days with a stretch and a roll or a cruisy walk just keep things moving. There really is such a thing as over training and rest, recovery, stretching, sleep, and proper nutrition all help with your body repairing, healing and being raring to go next time. Biggest message here is respect the rest day. Injury’s suck – massively – embrace the rest, stretch, and roll day. They are super important. Yep, I am speaking from experience.
9. Wear the Right Kit
I have said it before, and I am sure I will say it again. I know I wouldn’t want to run a marathon in stilettos so make sure you have the right gear for the conditions you are training or moving in. If it’s 30 degrees outside you won’t want to be training in your winter kit and vice versa. Ditch the gear that doesn’t work anymore or that has holes in places it shouldn’t. You want your kit to perform at its best so you can perform at your best. You don’t have to replace everything!! That is not what I am saying here. Simply make sure that what you have and what you use regularly is the RIGHT kit for YOU and what you need to do! This includes using the right anti-chafe and blister prevention.
10. Reward Yourself
Seriously. Find a way to feel like you are being rewarded for the session. This might be a new piece of kit, a pair of socks, massage, a new running hat, a nice meal. It doesn’t matter what it is at all. In a perfect world, you want it to be something that enhances your training not detracting from it. I am a massive believer of everything in moderation though so as long as it works for you and you feel rewarded without it detracting from your training, go for it!
Do you find some of these work for you too? Or have you found something else that works for you? Make sure you let me know!! I am always up for ideas, tips and tricks especially if it helps me train more effectively.