Staying motivated during any exercise program is challenging, even for the most experienced exercisers. There are times when exercise becomes routine or even boring. Your objective should be to add a variety of exercises so you can mix things up when you start to lose interest.
How do you avoid discouragement?
By planning ways to reward yourself for meeting your fitness goals. Rewards for meeting goals are a great way to reach your goals. Whether you have fitness goals or some other goal in life, make it a point to…
Follow a program that includes incentives
We all need to follow a regular workout program. But it shouldn’t be so difficult that you have to force yourself to follow your plan. That’s why it’s important to build in regular rewards to maintain your motivation.
Treat yourself to something that makes your efforts worthwhile. Just be sure not to use any candy or any food for that matter. You will only create the need for more exercise to rid yourself of the added calories.
Make a list of things you enjoy. Activities, golf, music, books. Create your list for you! Try to have a good variety of small, medium and large rewards to correspond with small, medium and large accomplishments.
Set smaller goals with appropriate incentives
If your goal is to lose weight, planning appropriate incentives for smaller goals may be the best approach. Don’t wait until you lose 20 pounds to give yourself a pat on the back. Your exercise plan will seem much harder. Give yourself that pat on the back or a reward for every five pounds lost. Buy yourself something special. A new CD or a DVD of a recently released movie for example.
Another method would be to set your mini goals based on how many calories you burn each day. When your total reaches 3500 or more, reward yourself. Buy something you normally wouldn’t purchase.
Small incentives for your mind and soul are better for you than rewards that expand your waist line when your goal is to increase fitness and build muscle strength.
Set up incentive points for running that extra mile, lifting or pressing heavier weights, or when you exercise for longer time period. Use the same type of incentives – magazines, books and music.
Add in some activity incentives such as golf. Maintaining additional activity will also help you reach your next fitness goal sooner. Knowing that you will reward yourself can make workouts feel easier.
Exercise with a partner
Exercisers who partner with someone can reach goals with less stress and more fun. Each person should write down his or her own reward ideas – things that you would like to receive as a gift to yourself for caring for your body through fitness.
Partners should then exchange lists and whenever one person reaches a goal, the partner chooses one of the items from the list to reward the accomplishment.
You can also add a form of competition when pairing up to exercise. When one exercise partner reaches a goal, the other buys the reward. This friendly competition can help speed up your fitness plan.
Important reminder about incentives
Your incentives should always match the accomplishment. Keep the size and price of your fitness incentives in line with the level of difficulty to get there. Buying yourself a fancy new entertainment system for losing a few pounds will not help you reach your ultimate fitness goals.
Small steps you make toward your fitness goal should be rewarded with small incentives. For instance, go to a movie and be sure to skip the concession stand. When you reach a mid term fitness mark. Treat yourself to some new fitness clothes so you look and feel good when you exercise your way to your ultimate fitness goal.
Celebrate when you reach your ultimate goal
When you accomplish your ultimate goal. It’s time to let loose and celebrate the new physically fit you! Spend a weekend at a spa, pamper yourself, you deserve it. You have worked and sweated off thirty pounds or more, show off your beautiful new body with some new clothes. Take that vacation to a scenic retreat you have always wanted to go to. Spend some time relaxing and reveling in what you accomplished.
Maintaining a high level of motivation is tough these days. Exercising your way to all the incentives you have in store will help you reach your fitness goals faster. Not only will you get there faster, your life will become better as well.