My dad's favorite poster of all time.
We’ve all been there. You eat a big, deliciously fattening dinner. You know the kind I’m talking about. The kind that doesn’t beat around the bush. First, there’s bread and butter…and then a little more bread and butter. This is followed by a couple apps shared with friends. Next, you say, “Hmm, a little red meat is good for my skin, so I read once in some women’s magazine from 1950.” After the bloody steak you decide another cocktail won’t hurt anyone. Right?? Finally, the dessert menu has magically landed in front of you and you make some banter with your friends about how we only live once and we deserve to pamper ourselves and blah, blah, blah, blah. Two shared desserts and a cappuccino later and the bill arrives with a giant side of bloated guilt. “What have I just done to my body?” you think. This thought is immediately followed with, “Oh well, I’ll just work out extra hard tomorrow and the rest of this week.” Cut to the next day when your alarm clock goes off and you’re just so super tired and can’t possibly get out of bed so you tell yourself, “Oh well, I’ll work out hard the REST of the week.”
Any of this sounding familiar?
We all have fantasies about reaching our ideal bodies and the back of our subconscious is constantly thinking about this. Unfortunately, this desire is often outweighed by our lack of motivation and general laziness. It feels impossible at times to get into a solid exercise habit. I keep trying lately but am finding myself battling my own motivational slump. Luckily, I happen to have the world’s most motivated human being as a father (who is also a trainer), so I can turn to him for advice when I’m in a rut. I asked my dad for tips, tricks and basically magical powers he could provide in order to help me get my dream body. Sadly, what I found was that what motivation mostly comes down to wasn’t magic or tricks, but the ability to SUCK.IT.UP. This is how he answered my questions:
What do you find is the best way to talk yourself into working out even when you’re tired, hungry or it’s late in the day?
– People need to realize the benefits the workout will provide besides getting your body into shape. The workout will help de-stress you, it raises your metabolism, it releases endorphins and dopamine which keeps you pepped for 2-5 hours after your workout. And it will also boost your mental state and make you happier. Lastly, just remember how good you will feel when you’re done and how bad you will feel if you don’t do it.
Do you have any tricks or tips you use to motivate yourself?
– No tricks really. I just suggest putting the workout into your daily schedule and sticking with it. A personal trainer and/or a workout partner will help push you to sticking to the schedule. Otherwise, find a sport you enjoy and join an amateur team or play with friends. You could also just keep the following in your head as reminders why you’re doing this: You will have more energy and endurance at work. You will look better physically (the biggest motivator), it helps prevent injuries and it boosts your sex life (5th grade Jina: “DAD!!!!”).
Why do you think Americans (or people in general) have such a hard time staying motivated?
– Unfortunately, we’re a lazy population in general but also because a lot of people work two jobs or at least long hours with their one job and it’s hard to find the time. People are overworked, too busy and too tired. Also, as a society, we want to have fun and work isn’t fun (Sad stat: Only 10% of the population works out on their own consistently).
How often should people actually be working out a week in general?
– 3-5 times a week for 60 minutes.
What do you suggest as a realistic workout goal/routine for the average person?
– At least 3 times a week of cardio and 2 times a week of weight training. They can be done in the same day.
Any suggestions you have for rewarding yourself after hitting a goal?
– Buys some new clothes or plan a relaxing weekend or do something fun but DO NOT reward yourself with food because that contradicts the work you’ve done.
Thanks Dad! Lastly, here are a couple of my own tips that I posted last year! JINA TIPS!
Photo found via Pinterest