As I write this I am on a Bali family holiday, and it is ironic as I talk about motivation and training year round, because the heat here feels less motivating than the freezing 5am Melbourne winter starts!
I believe that habit is far more sustainable than motivation, as motivation ebbs and flows while most humans naturally resist change. First, we need the desire to achieve something… a six pack, a peachy bum, general health and wellbeing. Then we require the motivation to get started. This is where group training is super helpful; a supportive like-minded community of people will definitely motivate you! From this point on we require a routine, accountability, measureable successes, maintenance of the desire and a cheer squad. Yep, a cheer squad – because getting up in the dark and cold is way more fun when you have someone to acknowledge and celebrate with you.
My winter routine is set, we wake at 4.30/45am I have a warm lemon water and do a few simple stretches before loading the kids into the car. On the way to the gym my hubby and I drink coffee and discuss our three “gratefuls”. Training starts at 5.45am and concludes around 7.45/8am. Then I eat a hearty vegan breakfast which in winter is either loaded porridge, tofu scramble or Kitchari. I practice yoga during the day or at night and take a magnesium supplement which allows me to recover from intense training. I have the same daily routine Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday. Saturday’s training starts at 8am and Sunday’s starts at 9am with yoga and at 10am with a workout. I loooooooove my Thursday rest days.
As a coach, I believe everybody needs a coach. I’ve always had a trainer because I believe we can learn something from everyone and also because they help keep me accountable. At my CrossFit, I call people if they have been out of action for more than 7days. It’s always hard after taking a few days off, but having someone to check in on your progress and track your attendance prevents most people from choosing the couch over their fitness! Not sure if my members love me or hate me for this but either way, they know I love them!
Do you regularly set and review your goals? If not this is something I highly recommend! Having a dream to chase keeps you motivated, and visualising what it would feel like to achieve these goals has been proven to help you succeed. It took me five years to get a ring muscle up, and it was worth every extra training session and constant visualisation. Write a list of all the things that you want for your health, wellbeing and fitness. Write another list of the steps you need to take towards achieving them, and celebrate every.damn.one. I find it more appealing to chase movement and strength goals rather than kilograms on the scale, others may find it helps to track their nutrition and actual training sessions completed. Make the steps easily trackable and watch your motivation levels stay high as you inch closer to reaching your goals. Ps have you seen the new Canvast dateless planners? They have dedicated goal setting pages…check them out here!
4. GOALS, GOALS & MORE GOALS
In keeping with reviewing your goals, you can always adjust the direction your life is headed. Dream of making it onto the stage in a fitness comp? It’s totally ok if three months in you find that you actually love deadlifting and eating pizza. Simply create a new goal and set those steps to reach it! For me, my goal is always to be the fittest and healthiest I can be so that I can be active and feel well for my whole life. Sometimes this means my goals are simply to stick to my weekly routine, at other times I am chasing a specific lift or movement but the overarching dream is to be the healthiest version of me. I am also aiming to be a balanced role model of health for my children which brings me to my last point.
Your cheer squad might be your brother or your coach, it might be your community in a group class or like me, it might be your family. In my case my coach and community are my family ;) but there is an underlying motivation for me to present a balanced approach to health and fitness for my children and to model positive body image. I’ll never forget the time Raine told me to “Go get the kilo’s mummy!” when I set up for a 1rm deadlift. I love seeing the kids that come to our box while their parents train…they love to cheer “go mummy, go daddy” and are always up for a post workout high five. There is nothing better than reaching your goals and being celebrated, even if you are wearing leg warmers over Stance socks and three long sleeve tops under your hoody.
Now that I have finished this I feel inclined to get off the laptop and do at least a few burpees…I hope these 5 tips help keep you going during these cold months.
Yours in health and wellness (even in winter!),
About the Author
Ariel is a mum of three gorgeous little hippies, a lover of CrossFit and Yoga and co-owns and is a head coach at CrossFit Croydon with her hubby Eric. Ariel has a degree in Exercise and Sport Science, is a qualified yoga teacher and AcroVinyasa teacher, has 10 years of PT experience, is a Level 2 Crossfit trainer and is super passionate about helping women with pre and post natal training (online program available now!!).