How to Motivate Yourself to Work Out in Your 30s
posted on April 29, 2020 | by Janice Brownlee
If you’re a 20-something who thinks that working out gets harder as you age, wait until you enter your 30s.
During this stage of your life, there’s always something going on — loads of commitments you can’t miss, or an emergency you have to attend to. Now, there are even more external factors we can’t control given the current global crisis. However, regularly exercising in your 30s is more important than you think, as this is when significant health-related changes start happening to your body. There’s also no better time to do so than now, especially as we are all going through a countrywide lockdown.
Why it’s Crucial
Fitness blogger Katie Arnold lists some of the physical changes that happen when you turn 30. This includes a slower metabolism, bone thinning, and stiff joints. What’s more, your 30s can be a really stressful time as you navigate relationships, families, finances, and difficult life decisions. You may be feeling particularly anxious these days – reading the news, being cooped up at home, and not seeing some of your loved ones. All these factors can seriously take a toll on your mental state, which brings us back to how essential exercising is. Regularly working out is a tried and tested way to circumvent or at least diminish the negative physical and mental effects of stress.
While it’s obvious that exercise can strengthen your bones and tone your muscles, many people aren’t aware of the mental and emotional effects of working out consistently. Researchers from the University of Nebraska emphasize the role of exercise in improving mental health, which can affect everything from your mood to your sleeping patterns. Additionally, Maryville University highlights how mental health ties in with learning success, which means that a boost in your overall wellbeing can improve unexpected aspects of your life. Working out can affect both your professional and personal life — you’ll find yourself happier in your relationships and more productive with your job, especially now that you’re working remotely. The more you follow your regimen, the stronger, more focused, and more confident you’ll feel. Sticking to a routine will also give you a sense of certainty both during this crisis and beyond. Read on to learn how to reap these benefits and motivate yourself to work out regularly.
Write it down
Whether it’s in a planner, on a bulletin board, or on your phone, it doesn’t matter — just write it down somewhere. The key thing is to have your workout program where you can easily see it and be reminded of it. Keep a tracker if you can – ticking off the days and your fitness goals as you achieve them can be extremely motivating.
Tell your friends
If you’re serious about exercising regularly, don’t keep it to yourself. Tell your friends and family all about your plans and your goals. You can even schedule a Zoom call or any other video conference to turn it into a group effort and have some fun while you’re at it. There are a number of workouts and videos you can find online. It helps if you have a virtual workout buddy who can keep you accountable and cheer you on when you need it. We could all use a little encouragement during these trying times. You and your buddy can even have a Google doc to track each other’s progress and to help motivate each other to focus on your goals.
Have concrete goals
In terms of goals, having concrete but achievable ones are critical to successfully sticking to a regular routine. If you’re living a sedentary lifestyle right now, don’t suddenly push yourself to do more than what you are capable of. Start with smaller goals like doing one push-up every day, or practicing some yoga as a form of meditation as well. As you get better at hitting certain markers, gradually increase the difficulty and the tasks.
Make time for it
Lastly, and most importantly, the best way to motivate yourself to work out in your 30s is to make the time to do it. No matter how busy and overwhelming life seems, carve out time from your day or your week to squeeze in a workout. It helps to stick to a regular schedule — whether it’s every morning or twice a week, as long as you do it. Think of it as part of your daily routine, just like how you have to brush your teeth or fix your bed in the morning – it’s just something you have to do. Those endorphins will be good for you, and working out can be your positive outlet and coping mechanism as we wait for this storm to pass. It may even become a habit you will stick to.
Ultimately, only you can decide to follow these tips to improve your overall health. So make an effort to put on those yoga pants and turn some canned goods into DIY weights – the best time to start is today.