PS. I got nominated for ATHLETE for the Fusion Magazine Awards! If you could vote for me (Tanya Savage) that would be mucho great!
|Pic from here|
Two Approaches to Exercise - Pleasure or Punishment?
Ask any personal trainer anywhere across the Western World what the number-one key is to success and they will tell you it’s motivation. It’s really a simple case of those with long-term motivation reaching each and every one of their goals like clockwork, while those with little to no motivation are to a large extent doomed to failure before even getting started in the first place. However, motivation is something that doesn’t just grow on trees and doesn’t come easy to most either, but must instead be targeted and pursued in order to reap its rewards.
The thing about exercise and every weight loss imaginable is that there are two ways of looking at what’s going on – those being pleasure or punishment. On one hand there are those that are doing what they’re doing with a positive frame of mind and with optimism for a brighter future, while on the other there are those that are pretty much punishing themselves for not being perfect in the first place.
Make no mistake about it – those that seek motivation in the latter camp will seldom be able to keep up their efforts for more than a week or two. There is absolutely nothing to gain from punishment other than the feeling of being downtrodden and dissatisfied, which is guaranteed to kill motivation in a heartbeat.
Of course, it’s anything but easy to take a look at your current situation and adopt a positive stance at the snap of a finger. Instead, it takes a solid dose of both common sense and intelligence to be able to take a good look in the mirror and transfer all that negative energy into something motivational.
The first step it to ask yourself exactly why you are exercising in the first place. Are you trying to lose weight? To look better? To live longer? To increase stamina for a competition? Any and all of these reasons amount to positive outcomes which makes it crucially important to assess your ultimate goals and understand that the effort will be rewarded in time.
In terms of getting started, those that assume motivation will one day just appear out of nowhere are in for an unpleasant surprise…it won’t. Using the ‘tomorrow for sure’ or ‘the diet starts Monday’ approach is a guaranteed recipe for failure. You need to ask yourself if there is a single concrete reason why you cannot start right now and if there isn’t one to speak of, make today the day your life changes for the better.
And in terms of keeping going once you’ve started, the single most important piece of advice offered by professionals every day is to never, under any circumstances try to go it alone without help and support. Whether this means hiring a trainer for a weekly chat or simply buddying up with a friend with similar goals is up to you, but there is nothing in the world that breeds motivation like having at least one other person there to help you through the process.
By Lisa Morton
Lisa Morton prides herself on having perhaps the most personal trainer London has to offer and regularly blogs her musings to promote public health.