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9 Ways to Increase Motivation for Working Out and Beat the Exercise “Allergy”


“I tried exercise but found I was allergic to it – my skin flushed, my heart raced, I got sweaty, short of breath. Very very dangerous.”

– Unknown

It is finally Autumn again. The leaves are falling and the pleasant scents of pumpkin spice and cinnamon fills the crisp air. However, these are not the only things that fill the air. Mold and other allergens are constantly flying around and making many of us teary eyed, sneeze and cough. Some of us feel allergic to more than just the trees and dander though…some people act like they are allergic to exercise and lack a motivation for working out. Technically speaking (in our most scientific voice) some are allergic to sweat, but that is beside the point. Most of us who say we are allergic are just making excuses. So what can we do to remedy this “allergy”?

Many think the lacking motivation for working out “allergy” only hits the general population. Unfortunately, we see it all the time! Our elite athletes even get hit by the allergy, having a lack of motivation for working out. I’ll never forget one Olympic level swimmer walking into the gym each day dragging his feet. He was beat up, worn out, and pushing his body to the limit.

How can one maintain motivation for working out for 30 hours a week?

At COR, we have many tips for those lacking the motivation for working out. Checkout our tips and get started 🙂

9 Tips for Sparking the Motivation for Working Out “Allergen”

  1. Listen to the right music! – Ace Researchers found that listening to upbeat music while working out can reduce the perception of effort which then increases endurance by 15 percent! Plus, listening to your favorite jams makes the time pass faster, helping anyone increase the motivation for working out. If you are a swimmer, try a SwiMP3 or an underwater speaker. If in the gym, listen to uplifting music you enjoy.
  2. Work out with a friend. – If it is hard to push yourself, try working out with someone or in practice having an accountability buddy. Many research studies suggest peer feedback increases motivation compared to coach feedback.
  3. Extrinsically Motivate Too! – Think for a second like an educator. If there is a child who is not intrinsically motivated, extrinsic motivation tends to work! You can try the same to yourself with exercise!  This means giving yourself a reward. Just try and think of a healthy reward, like listening to a podcast or getting a smoothie/workout drink after you exercise for boosting your motivation to working out.
  4. Penalize Yourself:  You can do this on your own, but it is better with a friend. If you or your friend does not show up for workout, they owe you something. This can be a healthy treat like Pressed Juicery or a tough punishment with a friend.
  5. Set a goal! Setting goals increases motivation for working out. We see it time and time again, set your goal and write it somewhere you see it everyday. Draw a picture of your goal, these items build confidence and motivation.
  6. Spread the word  Tell your friends you are spending your time exercising. Having others know what you are committing to will widen your support group. It also increases their likelihood to workout and having friends who exercise increases your likelihood to be healthy and exercise.
  7. Do it Early: If you are a Masters swimmer or just generally hit the gym, getting it done early increases likelihood of doing the workout. Throughout the day we all build excuses, so push the excuses aside and get their early.
  8. Don’t Focus on Results: Many lack the motivation for working out when the don’t see instant results. Remember, it is a process and results don’t happen overnight. When you find yourself focusing too much on your big goal, think of the other positives of working out: making friends, general health, and enjoyment.
  9. Just do Something! I was speaking with a patient this past week and we agreed many people build up exercise into something bigger than it is. They think “I have to workout for 60 minutes or there is no point”. Instead of building this up, simply get something in! We all have days when we can’t get to practice or the gym. When these days hit, try and do something! Work on your incantations or perhaps do a short 10 minute home workout. This keeps your streak alive and provide a positive reward on the day. Doing something is better than nothing! Increase your motivation by not making exercise conceptually bigger than it is.

Forget about going to your local pharmacy. Instead think about the these 9 ways to increase motivation for working out.