Friday, April 29, 2011

Motivation Gets You Started...

"Motivation Gets You Started - Habit Keeps You Going"

Don't mind the crazy letters.. we've had insane wind the last few days!

This was the quote on the sign outside the gym today, and felt it was very fitting for my first real blog post. I'll be the first person to tell you that motivation isn't always the easiest thing to find within yourself. There have been plenty of times (yes... even recently) that I just haven't gone to the gym because I lacked the motivation. When my husband had just left for Afghanistan, my energy was down to zero and I didn't feel like doing much of anything. Finally around day three of him being gone, I got back into the gym. I realized that me moping around wasn't doing any good, and was just putting myself behind in my training. Sure those first few workouts were pretty heartless, and I was really only going to get out of the house (and I knew my husband would yell at me if he knew I was skipping my workouts), but at least I went. Just this week I have come to notice, I have never gone to bed after skipping the gym, glad that I missed a workout. Instead, I'm normally laying there well after the gym closed, wishing I would have just sucked it up and went. On the other hand, I've never gone to bed after a hard workout wishing that I skipped it. I think I'm finally getting to the point in my training that it's become habit. I get to the gym, get on with my workout, and get on with my day.

It really helps to have a goal in mind, whether it's a weight loss goal or a race. Since I started my running journey in July/August, I have always tried to keep a goal in mind to help keep me motivated. My first goal: run a 5k. Sure to most runners a 5k is just a normal Wednesday run, for all I cared this could have been a marathon. For a girl that couldn't even run for a minute straight, 3 miles felt like an eternity. By having a goal in mind, it's always something to keep you going, and help motivate you when the little devil on your shoulder is trying to talk you out of your workout. Once I completed my first 5k, I increased my goal to a half-marathon. Sure, maybe I should have increased it to a 10k, but I wanted and needed a longer term goal. You know your body best! If you feel like you need to take baby steps, do it; if you want to take giant steps, go for it! (I felt like we were playing "mother may I?" for a minute! HA!)

What has really helped me stay motivated is having something/someone hold me accountable for my missed workouts. I'm not huge on having 'workout partners', but I like to log my miles on dailymile. After each workout you log your miles/training, and at the end of the week dailymile sends an e-mail with your total for that week. If I skipped a workout, it really shows on my report. Do what works for you! Create a dailymile account, or grab a friend and get to the gym. Whatever you choose, help motivate each other and get working out to become a habit.

- Andie

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