How I Deal with Workout Ruts

A more fitting week to write about this couldn’t have been planned any better. Just over the weekend, I was telling Husband that I felt soft. That word literally came out of my mouth. Pure crazy talk. Then I did 200 crunches. I call them ‘guilt crunches.’

{Her name is Cad the Rad. I like her lots.}
Every athlete goes through a time where they hit a wall. Motivation is lost momentarily. Goals seem daunting. Staying on the couch watching Netflix is way too tempting. Usually, I hit a rut in my downtime from triathlon races which falls between November and March. 5 months! Don’t misread – I do not stop working out for 5 months. Simply, what happens is that my workouts look a lot different during these months. There’s less pressure (mostly self-imposed) and I can really enjoy my workouts versus doing them just because I have to stick to the training plan.
{She’s dirty. Anyone care to share a tutorial for cleaning road bikes?}
Here are ten things that I’ve learned over the years which help me when I’m in a workout rut. And because of that proverbial bad apple spoiling the bunch, here’s my disclaimer: I am not a health fitness professional or doctor. Consult your medical practitioner before beginning any exercise regimen.

Ten Tips for Getting Motivated
1. Do not keep talking yourself out of a workout, day after day. 
2. Make a new and different playlist on your iPod. 
3. Run on a new route. Same goes for cycling. Swim with a buddy. (see #4)
4. Find a workout partner. My husband enjoys exercising together (except when he wants to “run faster”). This is great motivation and accountability. 
5. Do not berate yourself for skipping a day. Just don’t let it keep happening. (see #1)
6. Sign up for races. I have learned the hard way what it feels like to race without training. (spoiler: not pleasant
7. Find a training plan that fits your lifestyle and stick to it.

8. Eat well. Regardless whether you work out or not, this should be happening every day.
9. Hydrate properly. Not with soda or coffee, either. Water!
10. Challenge yourself with learning a new sport (rock climbing) or trying a new class at the gym. Kickboxing is amazing. Cardio + strength training + anger management. Trifecta.  
So there you have it, my ten tips for dealing with a workout rut. What get you out of your “I don’t want to exercise/workout” phase? How do you deal with it? Any obvious tips I’m missing?  

{My much loved $10 watch. 6 years old and still going strong.}
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4 thoughts on “How I Deal with Workout Ruts

  1. Susie Benfield Sincock says:

    New workout gear once a year always motivated me (or new shoes 2x a year), and always always, NEW pump-me-up music. I'm actually looking forward to my 9-miler tomorrow since I have 5 news songs on my running list 😉
    Woot! Good post, UW!

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