Yesterday I wrote about how to get motivated to workout, but today I want to talk a bit about how to get the most out of your workout once you’re up and exercising.
Have you ever had those days where you aren’t feeling it at all, and even though you muster up the strength to actually start working out, your heart just isn’t in it?
You end up going through the motions, (hey, maybe you even get a little sweaty!) and at the end of the session you give yourself a pat on the back for doing something you weren’t going to initially.
Well done, you do deserve congratulations for following through with exercising, but unfortunately I have some bad news for you.
If you didn’t push yourself to your limits, then you’re not going to improve.
Working Out is Painful!
Working out properly is hard. Working out to see results hurts, and if it doesn’t, you’re doing it wrong.
As I was yesterday doing my easy workout and taking frequent breaks whenever I felt a little out of breath or starting feeling my muscles burn a little, I started to get a bit frustrated.
I knew in the back of my mind that to some extent, I was wasting my time with this exercise since I wasn’t giving it my all. Working out halfheartedly is better than doing nothing, but it’s also not going to have very drastic of a positive effect either.
After I had finished ‘working out’, I jumped on the net to try and find out just how I could get my mind to do what I wanted it to – make me work out hard, push through even when my body was starting to hurt, and get the results that I want to see.
What causes us to do or not do something? A little thing called willpower, courtesy of your brain. Some of us struggle with willpower, maybe even classing ourselves as ‘weak’. A prime example of weak willpower in action: struggling to say no to that delicious chocolate bar that you know you shouldn’t be having, or having triple-helpings of dessert.
Or going back on your new year’s resolution only 2 weeks into the new year.
Weak willpower can manifest itself in many ways, but did you know that there’s something you can do about it?
Willpower is a Skill…
.. and like any skill, it can be improved through training! Just as your muscles can grow stronger through exercise (backed by the proper amount of willpower, of course 😉 ), you can also strengthen your willpower by exercising it. The old adage of ‘practice makes perfect’ rings true again.
How to Improve Your Willpower
Yesterday while researching on how to better my sorry excuse for willpower and strengthen up my weak mind, I came across this book on how to up your willpower. It’s full of simple exercises you can do which will help you exercise your willpower ‘muscles’, making you more effective in all other areas of your life that require a bit of willpower to get you moving out of that comfort zone.
Once you strengthen the power of your mind, then you’ll be much more prepared to push hard through those workouts, and really strengthen your body and make that time spent working out worthwhile!
The good news is that strengthening your willpower will benefit you in all aspects of life, not just from a health and fitness perspective! If you’ve ever wanted to take action but found that you seem to procrastinate, never follow through, or just plain get stuck in your comfort zone, then boosting up your willpower to get your butt into action will definitely help you.
How does your willpower stack up? Are you weak-willed when it comes to exercise? Food? Bad habits? Let me know in the comments below!