A lot of people love to workout for that inevitable ‘endorphin rush’. During long periods of continuous workout (of moderate to high intensity), endorphins are released as a direct relation to prolonged physical stress. This sort of ‘high’ keeps the athlete or fitness enthusiast coming back time after time and begging for more. But every once in awhile, even the most seasoned / fitness-focused individual finds themselves with a lack of motivation. They have either fallen into a dreaded routine or are completely uninspired to even complete a workout. Burnout isn’t too common amongst triathletes who workout for a living. But for the rest of us, seasonal change, work conflict, personal lives and emotional ruts can definitely adversely affect our workout motivation.
A simple fix for many people is just changing your routine. If you normally ride at night and darkness now pervades your usual workout hour, it’s time to wake up early and switch things up. If you’re just over the monotony of the time you spend swimming laps in the pool, why not substitute a new class or personal training session to keep you challenged and interested? Trying out a Cross-Fit class, Soul Cycle session or Pilates Reformer private training will not only thrust you way outside your comfort zone, you will also probably enjoy the challenge. If working out is truly your passion and you find yourself merely in a ‘rut’, a fresh class with new faces may be all you need to refocus and re-inspire.
For others, changing the routine might not be enough. And unfortunately, workout burnout comes with a ton of negative side effects. Lack of motivation to ‘move’ inevitably leads to poor choices in diet, disruption in normal sleep patterns, an increase in moodiness and/or agitation, and an overall dissatisfaction with one’s self. When the workouts start to ‘go’ so does healthy eating, sleep prioritization, and a focus on mind/body wellness.
Fortunately, getting back on track may be easier than you imagine.
Here are (3) simple suggestions to keep your workouts on track.
- Phone a friend // Make a date. Seek the company of someone you might normally not workout with. Sometimes you just need to revisit an old connection to help you feel inspired. Take the time to not only catch up, but be open to the workout they might have planned for themselves. So what if Zumba is something you would never consider? Try it out and have some fun!
- Create a new fitness goal. Maybe you already have all your races scheduled for the year. Why not create a new fitness goal? Try out a Tough Mudder. Train for a PR on a local 5K. Be open to an athletic activity that might be foreign to you, but still provides an opportunity for training and growth. Swimming’s your weakest sport? Hire a swim coach and train to make that activity a higher priority.
- Purchase some new gear. I know it sounds cheesy, but it totally works. Sometimes a workout rut can be easily conquered with some fancy, new clothes and/or equipment. A fresh pair of running shoes and a new Garmin Forerunner will definitely send you out the door and into the wilderness wanting to explore what both of those items can do!