Top 15 Mental Strategies to Help Improve Your Workouts
By Born Tough on
If you are a person who is unable to stay consistent on his fitness routine, don’t worry you are not alone. Even athletes strive to stay focused and be consistent to improve their performance.
This all happens because of a mental block! You might have heard the famous saying “Performance is 90% mental, and 10% physical”. You can be at the peak of your physical fitness, but if your mind is not focused, your training is sure to take a hit.
Table of Contents
- 1. Stay Focused
- 2. Be Aggressive
- 3. Be Patient & Play the Long Game
- 4. Visualize Supersets Your Success
- 5. Break Your Workout into Smaller Chunks
- 6. Create a Reward System for Yourself
- 7. Ditch Your All-or-Nothing Mindset
- 8. Don’t Compare Yourself with Others
- 9. Have Faith in Yourself
- 10. Accept Every Day is Not a Workout Day
- 11. Don’t Avoid Pain, Embrace It
- 12. Don’t Set Limits
- 13. No Sulking
- 14. Always Start with Something Easy
- 15. Don’t Be Afraid to Fail
While there is no miracle cure to cope with it, there are a few mental strategies that can give you a competitive edge.
1. Stay Focused
Focus is the most important aspect to do any task. Usually, the hardest part of sticking to a training regimen is simply the lack of focus on your fitness.
While working out, concentrate on what you are doing. Put away your cell phone and quit the chatter. Think about the body part for which you are working out and try to establish the mind/muscle connection.
If you want to do your workout with partners, make sure they are as passionate about fitness as you are. If you can’t find such a person, it's better to get going alone.
2. Be Aggressive
Be aggressive about whatever training you are doing. Don’t just focus on lifting weights, treat every set as if you’re giving it your all. The best way to do this is to channel your anger and emotions into every rep of the set. Do whatever it takes to psych yourself up!
3. Be Patient & Play the Long Game
The most common hurdle in your fitness is usually the impatience you have for your fitness. The best way to do this is to acknowledge that lasting changes don’t come overnight. Be patient and continue to do your work.
You will surely see the outcome in the longer run. Remember, good things take time, particularly when it is about fitness.
READ MORE: How to Boost Your Gym Performance
4. Visualize Supersets Your Success
The best way to begin any new workout routine is to set a goal and evaluate your progress. This is a good approach, as setting goals can boost your motivation level greatly. You can invest in good workout clothes that will help you stay motivated and focused on your workout goals.
However, while setting your goals, make sure to visualize exactly what it will look like when you reach that goal. Even if you feel demotivated at any time in between, close your eyes, take a deep breath, and imagine the moment when you will achieve your goal. This can instantly give you a big boost in your motivation level.
5. Break Your Workout into Smaller Chunks
Till now, your regular plan of action is likely to schedule the hour-long gym sessions and to hit the ground regularly. Slowdown... This will make you feel exhausted.
Instead start with mini workouts and break your gym session into smaller chunks. Doing this will make your workout more mentally manageable, and you can stay focused and motivated.
One of the most common ways we break down our workouts is by working out specific muscle groups each day. You can do chest workouts on one day and work your shoulders the next day. This will allow your muscles to recover on the days that they’re not being worked.
6. Create a Reward System for Yourself
On days when you are feeling low on your motivation, reward yourself with some kind of small incentive. It could be anything like watching an episode of your favorite Netflix show or getting a 10-minute neck massage.
These small incentives can give you an instant boost in your energy even when your bed feels extra cozy. Again, reward yourself with track suits and other workout apparel,
7. Ditch Your All-or-Nothing Mindset
This is a very common approach in which a person believes that they have to do a workout exactly as they have imagined or planned. The issue with this approach is having impossibly rigid standards that can only bring demotivation and discouragement because you have set unattainable and unachievable goals.
It's good to make your plans, but if you have planned to do a workout for 1 hour long and you are not feeling good to continue. Don’t worry. It's okay even if you have done a workout for just 5-10 minutes. Even 5-10 minutes of HIIT can be enough for a day.
8. Don’t Compare Yourself with Others
Don’t compare yourself with other gym members. This will only distract you and then you will feel resentful and discouraged. You need to think that they too were new at some point in time and that you have your own journey ahead of you.
They have put in their hard work to reach this level of fitness. So, rather than stacking your mind on other gym fellows, get inspiration from fellow gym members and focus on your workout to achieve your goal of health and fitness.
Read More: Ways To Keep Yourself Motivated At The Gym
9. Have Faith in Yourself
Have faith and get a grip on what you are doing. If you have faith in your workout program, your supplementation strategy, and your dietary regimen, you will significantly grow your prospects of being successful. Having faith in yourself also increases your motivation level, resulting in the speedy achievement of your goals.
10. Accept Every Day is Not a Workout Day
It is ok if you are not willing to do your workout throughout the week. Even the most motivated athletes and gym fanatics have days when they don’t want to hit the gym.
It is a fact that the human body needs rest and you don’t always want to work out. It's ok and it is completely normal. Just avoid judging yourself on those days. Recovery is very important and compromising on it will only pave the way for injuries and muscle problems.
11. Don’t Avoid Pain, Embrace It
Toughen up! When you feel pain, don’t think of it as the end of your set, rather it's just the beginning. Think of pain as a signal that you are going on the right track towards the growth zone.
Remember, when your heart is racing, and your body is burning, it’s a sign that you are one step close to your goal. Therefore, do not give up when feeling pain in your workouts, instead embrace it. As a result, you will get better outcomes.
12. Don’t Set Limits
There is a fine line of difference between setting a goal and setting your limits. When you set a goal, it means you want to achieve it and then move on to your next goal.
On the other side, setting limits will set the extent to which you can go and then stop. So, setting goals is always good, but never set your limits.
13. No Sulking
If the start of your workout doesn’t go as good as planned, don’t let that get to your head and ruin your remaining sets of workouts. If you miss one of your targets, don’t lose heart as there is nothing to feel bad about.
For example, you aimed to go for a 20-minute-long chest workout, but could not last for the set time. Do not lose heart, try better next time because that is what helps you attain your targets.
The gym is not a place to feel bad for yourself. And believe me, the gym is one place where reaching failure is not a bad thing.
14. Always Start with Something Easy
One more trick that helps in your days of struggling with motivation is to lessen your workout routine. Do a longer warm-up and slowly build it from there.
Let's say if you want to run on a treadmill for about 10 minutes, start with just 1 minute and then reassess how you are feeling. If you are up for it, go for another minute. Reassess again and continue this pattern till you build your confidence and ease yourself into the workout.
Related Reading: Positive Workout Mindset, What Is This And How Can You Have It?
15. Don’t Be Afraid to Fail
It's ok to imagine your success, but similarly, you shouldn’t be afraid to fail either. Good things don’t come easily. If you achieve everything easily, there would be no fun in success.
Not achieving something in the first run will ultimately make you stronger mentally, because it forces you to take a step back and think about what you can do better next time to achieve your goal. Therefore, if you fail, re-evaluate your path and picture your success in mind.
Workouts are not only meant to toughen your muscles but also to improve your mental health. The major trouble that most people face in workouts is lack of focus and motivation. Tips and tricks discussed in this post are found really helpful to get motivation and improve workouts for a number of people. Try them and you will surely feel the difference.
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