This is my daughter getting here first ski lesson from my husband.
I talked a bit in my first post of how I got started but I wanted to talk about how to get started again. What motivates me to get to the gym, go to a class, or just set up my mat at home. These are great questions. My friend Jackie asked me this just yesterday and I realized it is a question I get a lot. So I decided to take it to the blog!
I could write many paragraphs about different motivational "tricks", and I hope everyone looking for some motivation to get started in Pilates (or really anything) is able to take even just a "snippet" from this to help get started.
Early Riser-how do I motivate myself to wake up so early???
Ok, so when I worked a typical 9-5 workday, I set my alarm for 4:38 AM so I could get to the gym by 5 AM. As my husband says, I got up in the middle of the night. Yes, that says 4:38. I figured out exactly how long it took me to get up and get ready, get out the door, and arrive at the gym when it opened at 5. Was it easy? Heck no! But once I started it just became part of my routine. I just kept thinking how great it would feel when I was leaving work that I could just go HOME!!! My tips for doing early workout:
1. Set all your clothes out the night before...this includes socks and sneakers. I didn't want to spend time fumbling around looking for my running shoes. I even put my clothes in the bathroom because that is where I changed as to not wake my husband.
2. Have anything else out and ready. I would pack my towel, water bottle, wallet, headphones, whatever in my gym bag the night before and keep by the door.
3. If possible, start in the spring/summer! I know this is tough now, but it is light out at 5 in the summer and makes it easier than when you are going and coming home from the gym in the dark. As you continue your routine into Fall/Winter, you won't mind as much getting up in the dark as it is already part of your day.
4. Guilt. If I went through all the trouble to do all the prep work and didn't go, I would just be mad at myself and I hate that feeling.
I hear this all the time about starting anything new. Whether working out or weight loss many people find doing it with a friend makes it a lot easier. It gives you accountability. You don't want to let that person down.
My personal opinion (of course it is personal, it's my opinion) is I go it alone. My sister has always said I was a loner. I'm not sure that is 100% accurate but when I decide to do something, I tend to do it on my own. Twenty years ago I decided I wanted to lose some weight so I stopped by a Weight Watchers center on my own and joined. Several years later I decided I wanted to teach pilates, I signed up for the course on my own. I decided I wanted to do a half-marathon, I signed up and trained on my own. I think you are getting the picture.
Now that is not to say that I do not enjoy working out with people or doing things with other people. I really do! But I just don't want to give myself the added excuse "Well, so and so couldn't meet me for a run so I didn't go". That will not be me.
Now I have grown from this "loner" mentality as my sister likes to call it. In 2013 I joined a half-marathon training group at Fleet Feet in Montclair. I was so nervous! I am by no means a fast runner and I had visions of me being so far behind that I wasn't part of the group. This was not the case! I made some great friends and talking to someone really makes the time go by so much faster!
Lately I have been working out with my friend Tracey here and there. Hi Tracey! It's one of those things where we'll say "Hey, you going to the gym Tuesday night?" But I know she is still going if I don't, and I will still go if she doesn't. But it does make working out more fun, I admit. So maybe catching up with a friend is a good way to motivate you to hit the gym, so go for it!
So yeah, I haven't actually mentioned how I do it. Drumroll please...
Just Get Your Butt There!
Here's what I told my friend Jackie. I cannot take credit for this either. I heard this from a woman in my Weight Watcher meeting years ago, and I use it to this day. Just get your butt there and give yourself an "out". Think of it like when you see a character on TV go on a blind date and they ask their friend to text/call them after say 30 minutes to give them an excuse to get out of the date if it isn't going well. Same thing applies here. So here's what I did back in the day...
I just got myself to the gym. I made a deal with myself that I had to go to the gym after work, change clothes, put my sneakers on and be ready to go. Then I promised I would give myself a minute to decide if I wanted to stay. If I really felt I didn't have the time to do the workout I was "allowed" to leave. I only left once because I didn't get much sleep the night before and decided it was better for my body to get rest.
So What Did I tell Jackie?
Now my friend Jackie doesn't go to a gym, she has a treadmill at home. I told her that she had to promise herself that she would put on gym clothes, put on her sneakers and PHYSICALLY GET ON THE TREADMILL. Once she did that I told she could give herself the "out" that if she really needed to do something else besides exercise. I mean, she has a full time job, husband, two kids, a house, a dog....there are a many things pulling her in different directions. (Sound familiar?) But I bet if she does what I say here, chances are, she will stay on for at least 10 minutes. I can't wait to find out how she does this week!