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Motivation – Where are you?

Motivation. What is it? Why is it that some people seem more motivated than others, and how come when you feel you need it the most, you are generally lacking it?

What motivates you? Who is your motivation? When it comes to sport/health/fitness psychology motivation can be driven intrinsically and extrinsically.

Motivation

Intrinsic motivation is where you are driven from within and forms part of your system of belief. Internally this source comes from your own pleasure or desire to exercise and work towards are particular goal, and generally because you enjoy the activity itself. Extrinsic motivation comes from wanting a reward or to avoid negative consequences and you may find this source of motivation from the social media personalities you follow on social media or the fitness magazines that you buy.

Extrinsic motivation is where our desire to exercise is driven by an outside source;

  • An upcoming social event – think Christmas party, summer holiday, wedding etc.
  • Seeing an amazing physique on a fitness post that makes you want to look that way
  • Working towards a goal – a fun run, fitness competition, sporting event

Extrinsic motivation can be led by tangible rewards such as prizes, money, status or recognition. External sources of motivations such as the above are great, as they can help you move forward, but can also put added pressure on yourself and bring you down. Because intrinsic motivation comes from within it is often a stronger form of inspiration, it is what helps you stay consistent and working towards your goals.

Here are some tips to help keep you motivated and on track when you find your hunger to reach your goals fading:

  • Reward yourself based on your performance. Attend all the fitness classes you had aimed to for the month, or got up early every day this week to exercise? Why not treat yourself with a new gym top?
  • Positive self-talk. Yep, one of the signs of craziness, but I promise you, positive self-talk can help you achieve your goals and keep motivated. It is so easy to tell yourself you are too fat, aren’t good enough, can’t do it etc. Stop it! Tell yourself ‘great work’ for jogging the route that you would usually walk, for lifting more than you usually do, or getting up a little earlier to get in some AM exercise.
  • Vary your exercise regime – keep your mind and body guessing. Boredom can easily reduce your levels of motivation.
  • Set realistic goals – yep, I’ve said it before. Set goals. Make them SMART. Write them down, revisit them regularly and stay focused.
  • Get enough sleep! Lack of sleep will derail your training program faster than anything. Most people overcompensate for their lack of energy by eating too much or skipping the gym altogether.

IMG_4777Find motivation from within and use external cues to help get you over the line. Because on those days when you are too busy, too sore, too tired, don’t have time, or just can’t be bothered, this is what will drive you to keep pushing on. Enjoy what you are doing, remember where you have come from and keep it all in perspective. Remember – motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.

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Author

Brooke Turner

Brooke Turner
Read more posts by Brooke Turner

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