Mental Tricks to Take Your Workout to the Next Level

Check out these mental tricks to get your focus, drive and motivation back

The time we’re able to spend in the gym or outdoors is sacred.[slideshow:1249]

Exercise is the limited time we have budgeted for ourselves in an otherwise hectic schedule. It is an investment we make for the health of our minds and bodies and, well, it just feels awesome when you crush a tough workout. We’re familiar with the benefits (and the sore feeling afterward that hurts so good), but sometimes we can’t help but want to skip our workout for the day.

Whether it is the old “I had a long day” excuse or maybe the “I’m just too busy” line, we all go through days where your head just isn’t in it. In those times it can seem nearly impossible to drag yourself to the gym, but it’s important that you do anyway (see #9).

When you’re lacking motivation, debating whether or not to lace up your sneakers and get going on your workout, check out these mental tricks for getting your focus and enthusiasm back.

#1 Don’t Think of It as Work

The language we use shapes the way we think about things. When you think, I have to go workout, it seems like a chore and a pain. Instead think: I get to enjoy some ‘me’ time, focus on the fact that this is your break, your time to work on health and a chance to escape the hustle and bustle of daily stresses. It should be fun, not “work,” make sure your language and thought process reflect that.

#2 Recall Fitness Triumphs from Your Past

Convincing yourself to go to the gym can be the hardest part, but thinking about some of your best fitness achievements will help you make the trip with more enthusiasm. According to a study done by the University of New Hampshire, college students who were asked to recall a positive exercise memory worked out more frequently the following week than the control group, who weren’t asked to recall any memories. Researchers say it’s likely due to excitement brought on by remembering personal accomplishments. Think of your own fitness highlight reel when your motivation begins to dip.

Check out the 7 other Mental Tricks to Take Your Workout to the Next Level