Motivation: Why is this so hard? - Defy Age - Live Strong
January 7, 2019

Motivation: Why is this so hard?

Work for the Pump to stay motivated.

Motivation to workout, why is this so hard? Maybe you recently signed yourself up for a gym membership to try and force yourself into doing it.

But are you motivated? Are you doing it?

And maybe, like most who resolve to workout, you’re already skipping them and talking yourself out of it.

Motivation: Why is this so hard?

I started working out 50 years ago. I had some lapses in various decades, but for the most part, I get it done week after week.

But... Before each and every workout, I have to battle a little demon that lives on my shoulder and tries to talk me out of it. He says things like:

“We’re too tired, take a break…” 

“We can catch up tomorrow…”

“What’s the point, anyway?”

Sound familiar? I think everyone has a little demon living on their shoulder. Some whisper louder than others. But we all have to fight the urge to walk away and be lazy. Motivation: why is this so hard? More importantly, how to beat the devil and get motivated? Here are some simple tips and hacks:

Employ Ritual:

Habits. Sometimes, just doing the things you consider automatic can help get you moving. For me, it’s a few simple things I do every time without thinking much about it:

  • Turn on one of my favorite I-Tunes playlists. LOUD Custom-made for workouts. Songs from various eras, but all have a strong, driving beat. From 60’s oldies like “I Want Candy” by the Stangeloves or Bob Seger’s “Heavy Music,” to sweet upbeat soul music like the Esquires “Get on Up” to modern tunes like “Last One to Die” by Rancid, “Space Lord” by Monster Magnet and “Raise Your Glass” by Pink.
  • I pop two pieces of Bubble Yum Original Sugar Free into my mouth, one for each side. The non-thinking action of chewing the gum helps put my brain in the workout groove.
  • Then I slide on my Sheik finned lifting gloves and aim myself at the first work station.

Just Start:

I believe the first step is simply to get started: Do that first rep! And as you begin, tell your mind to shut the F up and STOP the verbal crap. Get into the music, let it drown out that little demon and his loud mouth.

Feel the beat as you execute the rep.

Breath deep, in and out…

Keep it Going:

Great, so how do you keep going past the first rep? It helps to have motivational goals you can visualize as you go.

Are you trying to add some lean muscle, lose some fat? Then think about how good you’re going to look in a new pair of jeans and form-fitting shirt.

How about your spouse or significant other? They’re going to be turned on by way you look. Think about it…

Don’t have a significant other? Imagine one. Maybe that person you used to have a crush on a long time ago.

Or just see yourself in general, feeling better, looking great.

Remember, this is your mind we’re working with here. Let your imagination run loose. Next to sex, the pump from a workout is one of the most sensual things you can experience. Go with it. Let your fantasies play out, if they help you push your body and get that pump going.

Feel the fantasy, feel the pump… get lost in it.

The 5 Keys:

Keep the technical aspects of your workout simple and straight-forward. Check out my 5 Keys to Feeling Stronger – Right Away for some tips. The main focus is get to that “pumped” feeling in your target muscles that lets you know the muscle-building process is working.

Using lighter-weights and higher-reps with solid form is the best way to get there. Take each set you do to ‘failure.’

A good  pump is an amazing feeling. It should be the motivating goal of each individual workout.

My Playlist:

You can build your own playlist with any music that feels good and maintains a strong tempo and beat.
For thought-starters, here what’s on my current favorite playlist. I usually play it on random shuffle so the order always changes.

I have several more lists, but this is the one I’m stuck on.

If you’ve got some favorite motivational tunes, please put them in the Comments. I’m always looking for more.

Peace of Mind - Boston

Only the Young - Journey

I Don't Feel Like Dancin' - Scissor Sisters

Feelin' Satisfied - Boston     

Last One to Die - Rancid

Summer of '69 - Bryan Adams

I want Candy - The Strangeloves   

Roll With the Changes - REO Speedwagon           

Any Way You Want It - Journey

Dreams - Van Halen 

More Than a Feeling - Boston

My Ever Changing Moods  - The Style Council     

Who Do You Love? - Woolies

Bad Reputation - Joan Jett & The Blackhearts

Lit Up - Buckcherry

Lick It Up - Kiss

Top of the World - Van Halen

Ballad of Detroit - Street Dogs

Lucifer - Bob Seger

Beautiful Trauma - P!nk

Badlands - Bruce Springsteen

Get On Up - The Esquires

The Dream is Over - Van Halen

Under Pressure - Queen & David Bowie

Street Fighting Man - The Rolling Stones

Baby Come Back - Equals

 HERE IT COMES  - The Ramrods

Heavy Metal - Sammy Hagar

Legs - ZZ Top

I Gotta Feeling - The Black Eyed Peas

In the City - Joe Walsh

Smokin' - Boston

​ It For Later - The English Beat          

Head On - The Jesus and Mary Chain

Rock & Roll Band - Boston   

Heaven - The Psychedelic Furs 

Raise Your Glass - P!nk

Cum on feel the noise - Quiet Riot

Space Lord - Monster Magnet

Give to Live - Sammy Hagar

Lose Yourself - Eminem

Rescue Me - The Alarm

Right Now - Van Halen

Love Walks IN - Van Halen

Heavy Music, Pt. 1 - Bob Seger & The Last Heard  

Rosalita (Come Out Tonight) - 7:02            Bruce Springsteen

Born To Run - Bruce Springsteen

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