How to Stick to a Workout Routine When You Hate Working Out

I Have Never Been a Fitness Junkie

So people who know my sister and I know that she is the crazy fitness junkie, and I am the health nut. I think that most people assume that those two personalities go hand in hand….but they are extremely different. I have never been into working out—most days it is the last thing on my mind. I always feel like I have so many other things going on every day that I don’t have time to workout. I hate running. All I can think about when I run is all the other, more fun things I could be doing. My saving grace growing up was my love of soccer; without soccer I probably would have ended up overweight and unhealthy.

Finally, I Found My Niche

               Luckily, when I entered college, I had a new drive to workout and become active. My amazing roomie had the same desire, so we decided to start daily workout dates. I subscribed to this app called Freeletics Gym which helped me to learn what to do when I was at the gym. It plans all of your workouts and adjusts the weight based off of the data that you input after each workout. FINALLY, I found the workout routine that was right for me! Over the year I became more fit than I ever was in my soccer days. My roommate and I began to crave our workouts which was something I had never experienced. By this time I had been eating clean for about 2 years. I am sensitive to gluten and dairy as well as a few other more obscure foods, so my great diet plus my newfound appreciation for fitness was a recipe for success. I have never been more confident in my body and my athleticism and my health overall. 
               I feel like a lot of people can relate to my struggle. A workout routine is impossible to stick to unless you enjoy it. That doesn’t mean that the workouts should be easy—we want to build muscle and burn calories—but it should be something that isn’t miserable for you. People who love running love it for the runners high…..As far as I am concerned, runners high is a big, fat myth…. 

The Formula for a Successful Fitness Routine

If you struggle with fitness and sticking to a routine, here are some tips to help you find your niche:

1.      Find a workout buddy with a similar fitness level. If my roomie hadn’t been into working out, I probably would never have stuck to my routine. She kept me accountable and pushed me when I wanted to slack, and I pushed her when she wanted to slack. We complained together, died during our workouts on the rowing machine together, and, admittedly, sometimes we ran to Cheesy Grill for milkshakes directly after our workout together….There were weeks that we went every day, and there were weeks we didn’t go at all because of class. It worked for us because we were at the same level, so find someone of your own to team up with on this journey toward fitness.

2.      Keep trying new things until you find what you truly love! Soccer was my love for many years, but, as I grew up, it stopped working for me. I lost my drive to go to practice and condition because I had so much going on that it became last priority. Not to mention, when I entered high school soccer it just became too political and lots less fun. You do not have to workout the same way your entire life. Transitioning to the gym was the best thing for me. However, there are millions of ways to workout. Try a yoga class, Zumba, a running group, hiking, snowshoeing, skiing, backpacking, water skiing, super long walks with your dog, kick boxing, rock climbing, tennis, hockey, figure skating, movie workouts, etc. The options are literally endless! Get out of your comfort zone and go to that spin class your friend has invited you to for months!

3.      Consider changing your diet as well. I find that I stick to my routine much better when I can see improvement. The best way to see improvement and feel improvement is to have both a diet and workout plan that work well in conjunction. It doesn’t have to be a complex or strict diet, but you will notice that your workouts are better and you just feel better in general when you are working a full program.

4.      Choose goals, but don’t choose a certain weight. One thing that I have learned coming to college is that our bodies are all different. If I am to be the same weight as someone else, I will probably be disappointed. I always wanted to lose weight, but when I worked out I was gaining muscle and burning fat simultaneously which kept my weight pretty constant. What was changing was my aesthetic and how I felt. Make your goal a way to feel. I wanted to be able to feel confident in a more cropped top, a bodycon dress, a bikini, and while doing an active, athletic activity with friends. Am I there yet? Some days yes and some days no! It is a constant battle, but fighting for a feeling is way more powerful for me than fighting for a number that may or may not be realistic for my body.  

5.      Invest in some cute, high quality workout clothes. I made sure to get clothes that make me feel confident for the gym. I want to feel like a 10/10 when I am working out. Also, if I love to wear the clothes, I love to get ready to workout, and then I am more inclined to go. My roommate and I also set a goal for how many days we would workout in a month. If we made the goal, we would go shopping for a cute new gym outfit. Give yourself those rewards!

Ideas for Alternative Workouts

You all hear about my sisters workouts all the time, and she is very hardcore gym/running junkie. I do like the gym, but I am not as intense as she is when it comes to building lots of muscle. I workout to stay fit and healthy, not to reach that next, amazing, impressive, physical feat. These are the things I do to workout:
1.      Gym—I love going to the gym with my Freeletics Gym app and lifting weights. There is an option to do rowing along with your weights on the app, but I found that when a rowing workout came up I would put off the gym. I decided to quit rowing so that I would go more consistently. It is all about being honest with yourself. 

2.      Hiking—I love hiking with my sister, boyfriend, and dogs. Hiking is the best workout for my dogs—they love being free to run and play! I love the beautiful scenery and the adventure of finding a beautiful place in the middle of nowhere. Last Labor Day Weekend we went and hiked Horton, a mountain in the Sawtooth mountain range. It was so hard, but the calorie burn was amazing, and we felt great afterwards!

3.      Long Walks—I love taking my dogs on long walks with my mom. Many say that walking is not strenuous enough exercise to really make an impact. I challenge that statement. I try and walk to work and anywhere else I go as many days as possible, and when I am home I walk my dogs with my mom.  It is a great way to fit in a workout and have a conversation! We could go for hours and walk for miles, and my dogs love it too! I always feel better when I spend more time walking each day rather than driving. Check out the link to see if you are up for my Walk to Work Challenge! 

4.      Snowshoeing—My dogs do not really know what to make of snowshoeing yet…but we are working on it! I love hiking through the winter wonderland that is our forests in winter! It is a great workout for them and for you. Snowshoeing is like a ton of slow motion high knees….very painful after a while. Especially is you are the one breaking trail! However, you will never see more beautiful scenes than when you snowshoe!

5.      Water Skiing—Being dragged behind a boat does not seem like a lot of work, but, let me tell you what, you will be sore in muscles you did not even know existed the day after you waterski! I try to go most mornings I am at my lake house. Sometimes the early mornings are not my favorite, and I slack, but when I do ski it is so fun and my body feels great after!

6.      Movie Workouts—I love movies! My friends and I decided that we should take advantage of our movie addiction, stop watching movies while sitting, and workout during instead! When you choose your movie, choose a bunch of criteria that happens often in the movie. Maybe you are watching Scooby Doo. Every time Scooby is given a Scooby Snack, do ten pushups. Anytime a ghost/monster sneaks up on them, do 20 crunches. Any time Velma loses her glasses, plank until she finds them. Any time there is a running sequence set to music, do calf raises until the song ends. You guys get the idea! I actually typed a few suggestions up here, so check those out if you are interested! A movie workout can be built off of any movie or show! It is always fun to try and keep up with the workout! This is probably my favorite one :)
I had to do a lot of experimenting to find ones that I enjoyed, and I still am looking for more! I also grew out of a few: I used to swim, play tennis, play soccer, run, and rock climb. As I grew, as did my workout preferences. If your workouts are getting old or it has been hard for you to stay committed and go workout, maybe it is time for a change! I promise there is something for everyone so please do not get discouraged! Keep trying!
Comment down below what your favorite workouts are, and give me ideas for more movie workouts if you have any!