Mind Before Body

Write your success story

Portrait of Tammy Strobel

Write your success story

We’ve all been there: One minute you’re working toward your goals with momentum, and the next you’re buried in frustration. During those hard times, feeling overwhelmed is totally normal, but don’t waver. Quitting is the quick road to a destination that you never want to reach.

Addressing a motivation slump is simpler than you may think. A tool I use daily is tuning in to my inner compass, and it will work for you too: Before making choices (big and small), play out the storyline in your head. Each decision will add up to you staying invested in your goal.

Imagine it’s a Monday, and you’re thinking of skipping the gym. Now consider whether you can live with the consequences. For me, missing a Monday always trips me up mentally, causing me to begin my week down on myself. But making my workout means I’m going to start my week in a solid place – and feel as if I can take on anything.

Picture your own positive scenario. Tell yourself that all you need to do is walk through that first doorway, whether it’s a figurative one (beginning a more positive thought process) or actually walking through the gym’s door. Then start slow. You know you’ll do better than you imagined – you always do!

Q How can I train myself to have the energy to work out first thing in the morning?

You just need to shift your clock. Begin by setting an alarm for bedtime – for a time that’s earlier than usual. It may take your body a week or two to make the adjustment, but beginning your slowdown routine earlier will get you sleeping sooner and prime you for the morning, so you’ll have the energy to get out of bed and rock out! It may still be dark outside when you wake up, but lean into its peacefulness: You’re one of the first people to enjoy the day. You’ll come to savour that time. I promise.

What if you’re stuck at a weight no matter how much exercise you’re doing?

Assuming you’re following a healthy diet, it may be time to mix up your exercise routine or even scale it back. It’s common for your body to become less responsive to an activity as it gets more efficient at handling that challenge. Changing the stimuli could be just what you need. Swapping long, steady cardio for HIIT and tackling heavier weights for lower reps are great options to create a bigger afterburn.