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Five ways to power through workouts you hate (guest post)

Thu, Sep 23, 2010

Guest Posts

5 Ways to Power Through Workouts You Hate**

If you’re like many people, it’s hard to find the motivation to power through a workout once that burns begins to intensify. We all want to reap the benefits of exercise, but sometimes it’s a lot harder than it sounds in your head. Here are few pointers that may help you power through a workout you hate.

1.Turn up the music.

When you’re really starting to feel the burn and contemplating calling it quits for the night, try turning up some of your favorite tunes. Pop in a CD that you love to listen to, or crank up your Ipod so that you are focusing on something other than how tired you are getting. Upbeat music tends to work best for this.

2.Picture the benefits.

When you’re halfway into that set of crunches and your mind is starting to wander, try to imagine what you’ll look like after you shed some of those unwanted pounds. Or, if you don’t have any weight to lose, think of what you’re stomach will look like with that six pack you’ve always wanted. The imagination can be a very powerful motivator.

3.Bring a friend.

Sometimes no matter how good the music is, or how well you can picture the new you, it just isn’t enough to get you through a workout you hate. Having a support system can quickly get you through the next half-an-hour without you even realizing the time is flying. This works especially well if you have a competitive mindset- you won’t think about how much you don’t want to be doing those squats if you are competing with a friend to see who can last the longest.

4.Change it up.

Monotony gets boring, and when you get bored you will begin to hate your workout. Try changing the sequence that you do your sets in, or choose different amounts of weight to lift. This will give you a change of pace that should help put some enthusiasm back into your exercise routine. If that doesn’t work, try incorporating a few new exercises into your workout so that you aren’t doing the same thing every time.

5.Take a break.

If you really can’t get through your workout, consider taking a short break so you can regroup. This will give you time to get a drink of water; maybe wipe off some of that sweat that’s making you stick to the bench. Just remember not to take too long of a break otherwise it will be even harder to get back into your workout.

We all know exercising is one of the best ways to boost self esteem. The key is sticking with it, and being able to see out a workout that you hate. Don’t give up- you’ll thank yourself in the end!

Louise Baker  more typically can be found writing on the subject of higher education and online degrees for Zen College Life.

MizFit note: Apparently Ive been spending way too much time with the age four & under crowd. When I read the title of this post I snickered audibly and thought: HATE. That’s a baaad word.

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19 Responses to “Five ways to power through workouts you hate (guest post)”

  1. Joanna Sutter says:

    You’re right, there are some workouts that are easier to tackle than others. Right now I’m going through a single-leg exercise phase (step ups, single leg deadlifts, pistol squats, etc) and it SEEMS to take forever to get through.

    Sometimes it’s a mental game just to get started but once my head is in the game, I’m golden…and music certainly comes in handy, too!

  2. Lindsay says:

    LOL Miz at the word HATE.

    It’s a turnoff for me too.

    Sorry Louise.

  3. Patrick says:

    Turn up the music is my fave on that list. Simply I like music and it does wonders for me on a workout. Changing it up is a close second. I get bored so easily. Have to change it up or I run the risk of not doing it. And I can’t not do it, not anymore. I skipped doing it for how many years, ugh, too many.

    Ok, I need to crank up the Metallica now; hope my cubical neighbors are Ok with that.

    Have Fun!

  4. Katdoesdiets says:

    Good music really helps me…I need to get better at the visualizing thing, it’s tough for me. Thanks for the tips. Miz, your comment at the end made me giggle, hate is a bad word for us too.

  5. Tracey @ I'm Not Superhuman says:

    I second the music idea. But also: Turn off the TV. My workouts are so much harder (in a good way) when I’m only focused on pushing my body.

  6. Bea says:

    Another nay sayer here ;)

    If I hate it I don’t do it….


    • Miz says:

      well…I’m not allowed to even think the badwordHATE around here so the post works for me if I replace the Hword with WHEN I’M FLIPPIN TIRED CUZ THE CHILD DIDN’T SLEEP.

  7. Jody - Fit at 52 says:

    I mix up my routines a lot BUT it still can be hard. I turn up the music & always picturing the benefits! Sometimes I play trick myself by telling myself just 5 more minutes but I keep doing that & before I now it, I get thru it! For me, though, it is mostly about the results I want so no matter what, I power thru! :-)

  8. Geosomin says:

    Yes…the right music cures all evils. At least for me.
    I find changing it up with somethign different every day helps immensely too…then I know the “hated thing” won’t happen all the time :)

  9. Sagan says:

    A combination of all of those is what I do!

    Of course, it’s even better to find an exercise that you DON’T hate ;)

  10. Khristal Jones (BodysRockin) says:

    I agree, #2 AND #4 Are definitely what works for me when I feel like just giving in. Ive made it through just from doing those 2 first…Great pointers you have here thanks.

  11. Kendra says:

    Yeah, my music gets progressively louder throughout my workout.

  12. Kat says:

    These are some great tips! Thank you!

  13. karen@fitnessjourney says:

    I’m on board with all of these-especially turning up the music. When you are listening to your fav’s, you can’t help but start moving.

  14. Yum Yucky says:

    Bring a friend! I took my son hiking, and half-way through the adventure he somehow turned into my personal trainer. He kicked my azz that day. AND I had to pay him for training session. sheesh.

  15. Quix says:

    I’m all about the distraction. On the ‘mill, I’ve got tunes, try to watch something visually interesting, watch myself running in the mirror, picture myself in various situations that are more pleasant. Anything to take my head out of where I’m at and just let the body autopilot through. If all else fails, I just remember how good I’ll feel after and that being a little miserable to get there isn’t the end of the world. It will be over soon enough.

    This was my long run this week.

  16. Debra says:

    I’m more of a physics law “A Debra at rest tends to stay at rest until acted upon by an outside force” but once I’m in motion I’m usually pretty good until the workout is done.

  17. the limited says:

    The tips are very useful. I think Workout in gym is lot better than doing it alone. You have an adviser there who guides you through your exercise and also motivates you.


  1. Tweets that mention Five ways to power through workouts you hate. | MizFitOnline -- Topsy.com - 24. Sep, 2010

    [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by fitnessexperts, Gretchen Glasscock, TWEET_WORKOUT, Robert Burgin, Alltop Health and others. Alltop Health said: Five ways to power through workouts you hate (guest post) http://bit.ly/aEk4My [...]


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