6 Science-Based Secrets To Help You Stay Motivated At The Gym

Inspirational quotes are a good place to rekindle our fitness commitment, and music can be a melodic path to getting into a fitness groove. Keep them both in your back pocket when you need a mantra or song to get you through those last reps. But there are other prove methods to help get you fired up. Make your workout routine a habit with these six science-based ways to get you motivated.

1. Your Hard-And-Fast Rules Were Made To Be Broken
One big hurdle is to not give yourself a hard set of rules, like “I have to start my workout program on a Monday or else I can’t do it.” Doing this makes it easy to talk yourself out of doing something. If you set yourself up for something small, like going for a 10 minute walk, you are more likely to keep that deal with yourself.

2. A Little Friendly Competition Can Light A Fire
Whether its running faster than the person on the treadmill next to you or wanting to take home first place, friendly competition is a major motivation booster. Even if you are not a comptetive person by nature, finding someone slightly faster or better than you can be helpful in terms of either a little competition or a conjunctive task. In other words, it’s a team efford, but performance depends on who is quitting first, and no one likes a quitter, even you.

3. Find A Friend Who Won’t Let You Off The Hook
Find a buddy or group to workout with, someone who will help to keep you accountable. Scheduling a gym session with a partner will make it less likely for you to back out of a workout. Being around other people with similar goals to yours will help keep that motivation going.

4. Stop Making Exercise About How You Look
When exercise is all about your physical appearance, you fall short of your own expectations, you end up being discouraged and want to quit. Make it about how healthy or strong you are now compared to when you started. Having an end goal, like having a 6-pack, is great, but it shouldn’t be your only goal. Set micro-goals along the way, like being able to complete a full pull-up or lose 5% body fat. When you accomplish one of these mini goals, you will feel amazing.

5. Tag Your Friends On Social Media To Step Up Your Fitness Game
Healthy social competition and support on social media platforms motivates people to get out and workout
more, according to a 2015 report from the University of Pennsylvania Annenberg School for Communication.
Use social media to hold yourself accountable and help you stay on track and support one another. The main thing is to be mindful of who you have as a guiding force for your motivation - your friends should be excited about the same thing you are.

6. Make A Bet On Exercise And You’ll Win Twice
Okay, so the health benefits of exercise aren't enough to rouse you out of bed at the crack of dawn, but if part of your paycheck is on the line, there’s no way you’re going to miss that workout, right?
Fitness accountability apps like DietBet allow participants to set a goal and if it doesn’t get met, the participant has to part with their cold hard cash. And because the payout is attached to your bank account, the idea of backing out is a lot less tempting. On the flip side, if you do meet your goals, you’ll win it all back and then some! And it's not just a clever gimmick — a study in the medical journal JAMA found that dieters with a financial incentive were more likely to eat right, exercise and lose weight.

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Author: Ashley Macha