How To Enjoy Exercising In 5 Easy Steps


By Livi Wilkes

I used to be the kind of school girl who was filled with dread at the word “sport.” Anything to do with physical exercise was not my idea of fun and I honestly didn’t think I’d ever see a day where it was. Skip forward to five years later; I’ve just got back from spin class, I’ve booked into boxercise tomorrow and I’m planning my early morning workouts for the rest of the week. Yup – sometimes I don’t even recognize myself.

All I know is I’m a much happier, healthier and fitter person than the girl I used to be.

A love for exercise didn’t come overnight. When I first joined the gym in 2012, I lasted about three months before quitting for one reason: I found it boring so I couldn’t enjoy it. Back then, I believed the only way to lose weight was to run on the treadmill for 30 minutes straight. Let me tell you, this is wrong. In fact, I would still despise having to run on a treadmill at all, let alone for 30 minutes at a time but yet I’m in the best shape I’ve ever been in. So what did I do when I rejoined in 2015? I learned ways to enjoy getting fit. Here’s what I’ve determined:

1. Mix up your routine

If you head to the gym every single day knowing that you are going to be doing the same routine as the day before, your interest and excitement in exercise will soon fade away. A lot of variation can come from training a different part of your body in each workout which will keep your enthusiasm up. You can also try varying the cardio you do; one day, do interval training on the treadmill (1 minute walking normally, 1 minute sprinting and repeat) and the next day, use the stepper or the rowing machine instead. You’ll find you’re excited to get to the gym to try out a new piece of equipment and you won’t lose interest.

  2. Find out what motivates you

Motivation is the key to fitness success. I use Instagram and my Polar FT4 Watch as motivation. On Instagram, I can look at transformation photos of people who have lost weight and toned up or I can get inspiration for workouts or meals. My Polar watch shows me how many calories I’ve burned; so yeah, Spin class was a killer, but I burned 500+ calories so am I going to go again next week? Hell yeah!

3. Take progress pictures

You see yourself in the mirror every day, so there’s a strong chance you won’t be able to see the changes that are happening to your body. When I took my first progress photo I hated it and wanted to delete all evidence from my phone, but now I’m so happy I took it; I can compare it to what I look like now, and feel determined to not go back to that “before” picture ever again. Definition in arms, stomach and, of course, booty, doesn’t happen overnight (oh how I wish it did!) so progress pictures can keep track of your journey.

4. Go to classes

Fitness classes can be nerve-wracking. What if everyone’s better than me? What if I can’t keep up? What if I sweat everywhere and everyone thinks I’m an unfit mess?! Let me tell you – no one is paying attention to you. I love classes because they teach me new moves. I find having a teacher motivational and it stops me from getting bored from the usual gym equipment. When I first joined my gym, I was so nervous to get stuck in even after a couple of classes, but I persevered and I’ve got to know some of the other ladies too. Sometimes I can’t keep up and have to secretly lower my gear in Spin class, but what the hell! I tried hard. A sweat towel always comes in handy, too!

5. work out at different times in the day.

If you’re new to exercise, or find you have to drag yourself to the gym with sheer force, I find mixing up the time of day I go useful. If I go before work, at 6:45am, I feel like I’ve accomplished loads before even getting to the office and it puts me in ‘I’ve got this’ amazing mood for the whole day. If I go after work, I can free my brain of the day’s events and relax. I go to the gym two mornings and three times after work a week; the variation keeps me on my toes and excited to burn calories. Plus, if you like an emptier gym, the morning is a bit more peaceful!

Tell Us: How do you motivate yourself to work out?

Livi is part of the Contributing Writer Network at Thirty On Tap. To apply to become a Contributing Writer, click HERE.

{featured image via unsplash}