How to stay motivated to workout

Exercising regularly provides so many benefits to our physical health and mental wellbeing, yet it is something that so many of us struggle to keep on track with. Even when we have the intent and all of the equipment to workout, finding motivation for the gym or home workouts can be more of a challenge than the exercise itself. 

If you’re one of the many people who can’t seem to find fitness motivation or if you are prone to losing motivation to workout after the first week of trying, don’t worry as we’ve got some useful tips to help get you on the right path. Keep reading to learn more about some of the common reasons why people struggle to workout, as well as some solutions to kickstart your fitness journey.

Why can’t I stay motivated to workout?

If you feel that you struggle to stay motivated to exercise, you aren’t alone. There are many people who feel that it is difficult to establish a consistent workout routine, and there could be several reasons for this. 

Firstly, you may not be motivated to work out because you simply don’t enjoy your exercise routine. Exercise is difficult and does require a lot of effort, so if you don’t enjoy what you are doing or don’t feel accomplished after doing it, you’re unlikely to want to keep going. The key to tackling this is finding something you do enjoy. For example, some might prefer a home workout to the gym, and some may prefer yoga or a game of football to weightlifting or cardio. Partaking in something you enjoy will motivate you to keep going. 

If this isn’t the problem, it could be that you’re failing to set precise or realistic goals. It’s discouraging when you don’t see the results you want and that can quickly turn into feeling unmotivated to continue. You can combat this by working with a personal trainer, setting more attainable goals or rethinking your routine.For example, if you want to build muscle, perhaps start with just one muscle group at a time (i.e core or upper body), this will help you focus and you’ll begin to see results.

Another common reason people lack motivation to exercise is simply due to time. Fitting in exercise around a busy schedule can be a challenge in itself but it is important to maintain our health and wellbeing. If you’re struggling with time, try adding smaller exercises into your daily routine that you can do at home such as walking or jogging. You could even try to do this on your lunch break during work hours, and slowly create time for exercise before and after work. Alternatively, you could use the 3x10 rule if you’re short on time, this means swapping out your 30-minute exercise routine for three ten-minute brisk walks a day. 

How can I stay motivated to workout?

Successful methods of motivation differ between people, what works for you may not work for someone else. It’s important to try out a few different options to find one that works for you. To help you get started, we've listed a few ways that you can get your fitness motivation up to scratch.

Be active with others

Sometimes exercising with someone else gives you the push you need to keep going. Whether that be in the form of some healthy competition, a running buddy, or a class at the gym, having somebody else there to support you can be excellent for those who are prone to losing motivation to workout. If you can afford it or your gym offers it as a service, it may also be worthwhile having a personal trainer to guide you through your workouts and help you achieve your goals as they’ll push you to complete sets whilst remaining aware of your limitations. 

If your friends are unavailable to hold you accountable and you don’t want to go to PT, you can try using an app. There are plenty of options available, and you can share your data with forums, online friends, online coaches or your family who can track your progress and keep you motivated to keep going.

Set small goals

Goals don’t have to be oriented around weight or muscle as most people assume. Your goal could simply be to just achieve a certain amount of exercise per week, or a certain number of steps in a day to keep you moving. Alternatively, if you have a particular sport in mind you could try to beat your personal bests, such as time taken to swim a length of the pool or distance run in a certain timeframe.

Build a habit

Try to turn your exercise into a good habit that becomes part of your daily routine without having to think about it. You can do this by picking a certain time of the day to incorporate 10-30 minutes of exercise and doing this at least 3 times a week. It takes roughly two months to create a habit, so it’s important not to give up. 

A common mistake people make when trying to build a habit is going all out with one session a week, with the aim to turn this into three sessions a week eventually. This usually ends up becoming too much all at once, so when forming a habit it’s best not to build up to the amount of times you do it, but rather the intensity. Start off by exercising 3 times a week and adjust the intensity of the workout accordingly as you progress.

Stay consistent

Building on the last point, consistency is key when it comes to fitness motivation and goal progression. Attending regular classes, sports sessions, or gym sessions will keep you on track  with your habit forming and you’ll be much less likely to quit. However, staying consistent is also extremely important for the body as it gives your muscles time to gradually adjust and prevent injuries or strain from occurring. Consistency also plays a huge part in realising your goals, allowing you to see results in your physical and mental health much quicker.

Choose a cause

If you’re struggling to find the motivation to exercise for your own health and wellbeing, why not try exercising for someone else’s? You can choose to partake in exercise by running, cycling, swimming etc for a charitable cause that is close to your heart such as cancer research, Alzheimer's care, animal welfare, or mental health support. Charities are always looking for advocates and sponsors and frequently hold events such as marathons for fundraising. These require training throughout the year before big events, and since you’ll be running for a cause that people are donating to, you’re much more likely to keep on track with your training before the big event. 

Alternatively, if you think that fundraising might be an issue or don’t feel comfortable partaking in the challenges set out by the charity you can opt to join online challenges that you can take at your own pace. Some of these challenges are free, but some of them you must pay to enter as you receive a medal or certificate upon completion. Online events are a popular option for many as there are a range of virtual challenges that you can complete by running, swimming, cycling, or walking, so it’s completely up to you.

Wear the correct gym clothing

This is a simple tip that shouldn’t be overlooked. It’s important to wear breathable, flexible, and lightweight fabrics to the gym or during intense training. Wearing materials such as heavy cotton will cause discomfort as you’re likely to get too hot and excess moisture will be trapped by the fabric. Wearing something that is designed for exercise helps you to stay cool and perform at your best. For a classic combo that is suitable for any exercise, we’d recommend the Enigma Jersey in Hyper Blue and the Enigma Tech Pants in Navy for men, and the black sports leggings paired with the classic Hyper Blue Jersey for women.

Enigma Jersey - Hyper Blue from £17.95  | Enigma Tech Pants from £19.75

The Enigma Jersey has a streamlined modern design and is crafted from sweat-wicking quick-dry fabric, this helps to draw away excess moisture when exercising and keeps the fabric dry. Whilst the joggers are crafted from materials with similar properties, they also offer stretch and movement to ensure that you can perform your best.

Women’s Black Sports Leggings £19.95 | Women’s Black Sports Jersey £22.95

These women’s black sports leggings have been engineered with lightweight quick-dry fabric with plenty of stretch to allow for freedom of movement. Additionally, they’re secured by a mid-rise waistband that provides support around your core. The navy sports jersey offers a tapered fit and is crafted with sweat-wicking fabric to encourage excess moisture to move away from your body to ensure comfort and breathability, keeping you motivated to exercise.

Level up your gym motivation with Avec Sport

Whilst finding motivation is a personal objective that can only be achieved by your will and determination, we’re here to help you along the way. Alongside providing several ideas to help you regain motivation, we also offer a wide range of sports-ready clothing to help you perform your best. We stock a range of men's activewear, women’s fitness clothing, and even gym clothes for kids so you can exercise as a family or individually. Browse through our full collection of activewear to find high-quality pieces for your fitness journey.