February 1, 2012 | Categories: Fitness & Sports
Did you ditch those plans of six-pack abs and sculpted arms a few weeks ago when things got hectic? Has your plan of getting up early for a.m. workouts become more of a joke between you and your alarm clock?
As you’ve probably noticed, you’re not the only one whose fitness motivation has seriously waned while summer months progressed and barbecues were in abundance. But don’t beat yourself up for not being a “motivated” person when it comes to following a fitness plan; a study published in the Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology found that even with the best of intentions, exercise motivation fluctuates from week to week. And, not surprisingly, that motivation—or lack thereof—determines whether we’ll follow through with exercise or not.
Penn State researchers tracked 33 college students for 10 weeks to see how their weekly workout intentions played out. They found that not only did the students’ motivation to exercise fluctuate on a weekly basis, but skipping a planned workout strongly affected their motivation for future workouts, too.
It’s not necessarily that some people are motivated individuals and others aren’t, says David Conroy, coauthor of the study and professor of kinesiology at Penn State University. It’s that motivation changes; it’s not static. “Some people have weeks when they’re more motivated and other weeks when they’re less motivated.”
But fear not: Just because motivation is a fluctuating thing doesn’t mean you can’t keep your workout plan (not to mention your weight) from fluctuating along with it. Here are five strategies to make your exercise resolutions stick all year long—and put your fitness motivation into motion once and for all:
Read the full article on Prevention.com.
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