You're drained after a long day, or not ready to get out of bed. You're just not feeling it. At. All.
How do you get your butt off the couch or out of bed and working out like you planned? Moreover, how do you get yourself to look forward to it instead of dreading it?
One key is consistency. The more you exercise, the better it feels. For the first couple of weeks you're doing it, if you've been inactive, it's probably going to feel uncomfortable and you're probably going to feel worn out afterward. What's all this about exercise increasing energy? Depending on how deconditioned you are before you start, at first it might just make you feel pooped. Don't let that stop you. If you're consistent and start doing a little something preferably every day without overdoing it, you'll start feeling the benefits of increased vitality and energy with little bursts of exercise induced endorphins ("happy hormones"). Once you start feeling better, it's easier to keep at it.
Sometimes that's not enough. We get into these arguments with ourselves. "I'm tired, I deserve a break, I don't feel like it today, I'm too busy..." etc. etc. etc. We view exercise as a chore, and so we do mental backflips to avoid it. We need to start viewing exercise as something fun and valuable. Lots of people who enjoy exercise view it as "me time", to focus on and care for themselves. Taking the time to care for yourself means you're better able to care for others and fulfill your responsibilities. Plus it makes for happier people. Still dubious? Try something new you haven't tried before. Zumba is cardio dance and seems more like a dance party than exercise. There are lots of team sports you can try - check programs in your area. Martial arts are fun and active and can really help if you're feeling frustrated. After all, you get to go beat on punching bags for awhile. Find something you like, and try different things until you figure out what that is. Make exercise social if that works for you - work out with friends or groups of people. Get outside if you like being there. Get in the water if you like to swim. Find some aspect you like and start thinking of exercise as something you're lucky to be able to do.
Okay, so those are long-term attitude adjustments to work on. How do you get out of a short term slump and get your workout in right now?
1) Imagine how you will feel afterward. Accomplished. Alive and awake. Energized. Relaxed after a great stretch. I love the feeling of getting into the shower after a good sweat. Whatever makes you feel great after you've just gotten done with exercise, visualize that with every detail you can, and crave it like you would a piece of chocolate.
2) Bargain with yourself, but don't make your reward food. Maybe if you get your workout in, you can then take the rest of the evening off and watch a favorite tv show. Or go window shopping at your favorite store. Or whatever slight indulgence you want to look forward to but that won't sabotage your efforts.
3) Decide. With a capital D. Remember that you are in control of your life and your outcomes, and that success is the sum of the decisions you make for many days in a row. Make the conscious choice to succeed today.
4) Switch things up. If you'd planned on going on the treadmill and can't stand the thought, try playing basketball with a friend or trying that new kickboxing class or whatever. Do something different, equally beneficial, that you can stand the thought of a little better.
5) Call up your acountability partner. You have to plan ahead for this one and ask someone to help you keep yourself on track. Then when you're wavering, you call them and they talk you into it. If you don't have a formal partnership set up, call your most encouraging friend and tell them you need some firing up. Then listen to them.
I hope these help. Enjoy!