I've always chuckled to myself when people say, "quitting is not an option." Sure it is.
I'm going to go out on a limb here and say we've all quit something. Somewhere in our lives we've all dropped out of girl scouts, quit basketball, stopped caring about our nutrition, quit coming to group exercise class or something of the sort. And yes, I've done all of those…where else do you think I get my examples. If you haven't then you can quit reading this because you're perfect. Of course if you quit reading, then you're…well...a quitter…. your choice. Cough, quitter, cough. :)
So if/when you find yourself on the downward slope where workouts are falling off the top of your priority list and you're lacking the motivation to keep going, try one (or all) of the five strategies below to lift your spirits.
Remember why you started: Think back to when you were just starting out. Why did you start? What where you hoping to gain? What was your goal? Often times reminding yourself of your original purpose will rejuvenate your motivation to keep going.
Tell someone: When you're starting to dread workouts and entertaining the idea of skipping/quitting all together, talk it out, and I don't mean with your couch loving, fast food eating friend either. Find someone you look up to, respect and trust will give you sound advice. I know it's easy to just sink into a hole and disappear from the gym but don't. Talking through your feelings can help. It's ok to ask for a pep talk.
Try something new: If you're training plan is flexible try switching it up to keep your brain entertained. Check out a new class, a new studio, take your workout outdoors if you're normally inside, or vice versa.
Take it day by day: Working towards a goal that's months or even years away can be overwhelming. When you're three months out it may be easy to lose the urgency needed to get through workouts. Instead of looking at your plan on a monthly scale try taking it day by day (or week by week). Get through one day at a time and remember that even slow progress is still progress. With consistent effort, you'll get there.
Imagine what life would look/feel like if you quit: As much as I hate to entertain negative thoughts, it can be helpful to picture what your life would be like if you quit. How would you feel? Where would you end up? Are you happy/content with the effort you've put forth thus far or would you feel like you stopped too soon? Take some time to reflect on these questions and you may just find the extra push you need.
If all else fails carve out two hours for yourself to sit down and watch any of the following: Rudy, Rocky IV, Karate Kid, Hoosiers, Forres Gump, Mulan or my favorite, either of The Hunger Games movies. Really, one of them has to get you revved up. ;o)
Your turn: What is your favorite motivational movie you would add to the list?