My top 4 tips to busting out of a fitness funk

Everyone at some point gets unmotivated or demotivated when it comes to working out and exercising, for numerous reasons.

Work stress. Not making progress in the gym. Too many missed days. Bad weather.

Whatever the reason, it’s important to take a step back and make adjustments to your training and fitness routine to help you break free from a stall-out as quickly as possible.

I want to give you four ways to bust out of a funk and get back to living the Fit Dad life.

1. Give yourself a goal or something to train for or something to celebrate

Everyone talks about setting SMART goals — Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely.

These are good, and for me, I like to set my goals outside of the gym. The gym is my preferred way to exercise, workout, stay healthy, and be fit, but I want to be total-body fit. I want to be able to go out and do a mud run or obstacle course race like a Spartan Race or Tough Mudder or Warrior Dash, for example.

So setting a goal for an OCR would look like paying for the entry fee and then training for that race.

Just last year, I set a goal to summit three 14,000-foot mountain here in Colorado, and I plan to do so again in 2019. This year, I plan on climbing the tallest mountain in Colorado, Mount Elbert. So I will train for those hikes, as they give me something to set my sights on.

It also gives me something to celebrate outside of my day-to-day routine.

That’s where a lot of people get into a funk — when you feel like you’re doing the same thing over and over again with no rhyme or reason other than just you know you “should” do it.

2. Take a break

Now, when I suggest taking a break, don’t go cold turkey and shut down completely.

Be intentional about taking a break.

If one week, you’re just not feeling it when it comes to going to the gym or exercising, that’s fine. That’s likely your body saying, “Hey, I need a break. I need to slow down.”

Listen to your body, but don’t use it as an excuse to become couch-ridden with a bag of Doritos at your side.

Being intentional about taking a break means that you move in different ways, but at a far lesser intensity than you would normally workout at.

Instead of going to the gym, maybe you go on a daily walk or a light jog or a hike. Maybe do some light swimming.

Take a break from your routine and change your scenery and slow down, but don’t shut down.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder, and this is true in exercise and working out.

3. Try something new

In the same vein as taking a break, you might also try to exercise in a different way.

If you love lifting weights and want to continue that, but find yourself more and more unmotivated by your workouts, change it up. Try total-body circuit-training instead of a typical body-part split. Try kettlebell-focused workouts instead of all barbells and dumbbells. Throw in some HIIT training instead of your typical cardio.

There was a time not too long ago where I was really burned out on my typical bodybuilding-style workouts, and so I tried CrossFit-style workouts for a few weeks just to break out of the boring rhythm I had fallen into.

And you’ll see new and different results this way, and who knows, you might actually like it.

4. Just push through it

Only you know if this is your situation or not, but often, there are times in our lives where we simply have to do the next hard thing. We just have to push through it. We just have to be mentally stronger than the obstacle in front of us.

No. 2 on my 16 Goals of Fitness is “Work Hard - Just because something is hard doesn’t mean its not worth it.”

I hate the mentality of “If it’s not a ‘hell yes,’ it’s a ‘no.’” that is rampant in our culture. It drives me nuts. There are times in our lives where you have to do hard things even though you don’t want to.

You know your health and fitness should be a priority. Bust through that plateau or break out of that funk by simply staying the course.

Just do the next hard thing. Grow Your Own Tomatoes. Don’t rely on anything or anyone else to do the hard work for you.

Michael AshfordComment