When the voice inside your head tells you to quit, try implementing these strategies recommended by Dustin Mark McNeer.
No matter how much you love going to the gym, some days just feel harder than others. The workout seems to drag on, and the little voice inside your head is urging you to give up and go home. If your nutrition, sleep, and hydration are all on-point, Dustin Mark McNeer, a certified personal trainer, explains that your mind might need some coaching. Here are some useful mental tools to help you power through a sluggish day.
If you’re leaving your headphones at home, it may be preventing you from making the most out of your workouts. Research has shown that listening to music can help you exercise both harder and longer. Instead of listening to people grunt around you and whatever song happens to be playing in the gym, try creating a personalized playlist. Dustin Mark McNeer recommends finding songs that fill you with energy and make you want to move so that you can push through your workout.
- Role Models
Most people have a fitness role model they can look up to and pull inspiration from. Whether it be an athlete, bodybuilder, personal trainer, or fitness blogger, find someone who inspires and motivates you. When you think you’re about to quit, ask yourself how your role model would approach the workout when tired. Dustin Mark McNeer notes that by doing so, you will allow yourself to change your mind and get your head back in the game.
If you’re having a hard time getting to the gym, let alone even getting to the workout, consider finding a gym buddy. Dustin Mark McNeer explains that you’re more likely to show up for a friend than you are for yourself. Plus, whether you’re at the gym or on a run, having someone to workout with makes the entire process more fun. You can collaborate on your routine, try new things, and encourage each other to reach goals.
If you prefer to go solo, Dustin Mark McNeer suggests signing up for exercise classes or personal training sessions. By making an appointment and sometimes paying upfront, you are less likely to bail on your workout regimen. From yoga to Zumba, to cycling, there really is a class for everyone to enjoy!
- End Points
When you are in a high-intensity workout, you might once again hear that voice begging you to quit. Your brain is working hard to cope with the energy demands it must meet and is worried there may be no end in sight. To calm that feeling, Dustin Mark McNeer suggests giving yourself an endpoint. By telling yourself only five more reps, two more minutes, or ten more seconds, you identify an end goal and hold out until that goal is met. It will help your body understand that it won’t need to perform at this pace forever.
- Repetitive Mantra
Finally, you can power through the rest of your workout by engaging in a repetitive mantra. Dustin Mark McNeer recommends using it during repetitive exercises like running or rowing. Count your steps or strokes up to a specific number and then start over. Another option is to repeat a word over and over to the rhythm of your movements. It could be as simple as saying, “go, go, go.” By doing this, Dustin Mark McNeer explains that you are filling your mind with distracting thoughts that push out negative ones.