Workout Motivation Tips For Those Days When You Just Can't
Workout Motivation Tips For Those Days When You Just Can't

Workout Motivation Tips For Those Days When You Just Can't

Side note: This post was almost called “The New Workout Plan” and if you get that reference we just became best friends.

Guess which has been in my life longer: a) A Little Leopard or b) exercising.

If you guessed A, ding ding ding, you’re a winner! In fact, I’ve been working out consistently for less than a year…but in that time, I’ve turned into one of those people who can’t picture it any other way.

In fact, one year ago, things like SoulCycle and ClassPass were barely on my radar. I hated exercising, actually. I had no workout motivation and the idea of a group fitness class scared the crap out of me.

Then, one fateful day, I decided to give Flywheel a try. (I thought SoulCycle was “too woo woo.” Famous last words.) It was dark, I brought my friend Lauren, we both almost passed out, but we survived and I got hooked on the group fitness atmosphere and the rush of endorphins that followed a tough class.

Still, there are days when I wake up on Saturday morning and think “nnngh I don’t want to go to SoulCycle today.” That’s why one of my alarms is literally labeled “It’s SOUL SURVIVOR DAY! You love Soul Survivor Day!” Because it’s true, once my butt is out of bed, I do love Soul Survivor Day.

But sometimes, an annoyingly-named alarm is not enough. Here are five workout motivation tips that help get my butt in gear (plus my new favorite workout outfit!):

+ ONE. Find a workout you love.

Yes, okay, I’ve drunk the kool-aid. I’m a full-fledged member of the cult of SoulCycle. (Can I actually afford to be a member of the cult of SoulCycle? Barely…see number three, below.) 9:30 a.m. Saturday Survivor classes are often the highlight of my week. I’ve also discovered I’m a big fan of FlyBarre (especially with Elena and Glenn!) and CorePower Yoga’s C2 and Hot Power Fusion classes.

Finding a workout you love doesn’t just have to mean finding a group fitness class you love, though. It could be Blogilates, running (we’re spoiled with the Lake Michigan path in Chicago), or even using an app like Nike Training Club to guide your workouts at the gym. The point is, experiment, because you never know what will stick.

+ TWO. Buy some cute workout clothes.

Like this sick marble top from Varley, which I snagged from, of all places, ASOS.

Right?! I had no idea they had an activewear section until recently! It’s super chic and one of my new favorite places to shop for workout gear. Plus, they have a great mix of splurge-worthy and affordable options. I also grabbed these marble leggings and this Reebok strappy tank, and I can’t wait to show them off in the studio. I definitely get more excited to work out when I look cute doing it.

+ THREE. Find a way (financially).

If, like me, you decide that pricey group fitness is your exercise jam, find ways to make it work for your budget. For me, that means limiting my SoulCycle sessions to once, maybe twice a week, and supplementing with the five-class ClassPass package. Financial guilt and debt are hardly motivating.

Here some other ways I keep my fitness habit somewhat budget-friendly:

  • I take advantage of the gym stipend at my office — check and see if your employer offers something similar!
  • I use the Digit app to set savings goals and set aside money for the SoulCycle 10-class pack. Digit keeps me on track, and buying 10 classes at a time brings the cost down a tiny bit.
  • I also keep my eye on Gilt City for deals at studios.
  • Finally, I take advantage of as many free workouts as I can, whether it’s through work or elsewhere. A Sweat Life has a great calendar for free Chicago workouts.

+ FOUR. Pump up the jams.

Music is so important, both in fitness and in life. It’s definitely a huge part of why I’m hooked on SoulCycle and super loyal to a couple of particular instructors. (Jaclyn had me at The Killers, sealed the deal with David Bowie and then was really just an overachiever with a Tame Impala x Kanye West mashup. And Kellen’s hip hop themed classes are the epitome of a party on a bike.)

Outside of class, working out solo is the perfect time to zone out and really just listen to your favorite tunes. How often do we get to do that?

Personally, I’ve been really into the Hamilton soundtrack and Mixtape lately (along with the rest of the world…). Sia’s cover of Satisfied does things to my soul. Kinda like this. I also have a massive, 300+ song Spotify playlist called “endorphins make you happy” that I use as a jumping-off point for creating workout playlists. It has everything from pump-up power anthems to slower songs for stretching and cool downs. You can creep on it here, but don’t judge me. Come On Eileen is a great song, okay.

+ FIVE. Just do it.

Sorry, Nike. But really, sometimes you need to stop overthinking it and just go.

Let me know… how do you find workout motivation, even on days you just, ugh, can’t?

Shop my workout outfit and some of my other favorite ASOS activewear picks, below:

Photos: Hailey Lanier. This post is in partnership with ASOS.