Smile Stretch

Motivation & Goals in a Pandemic

Finding motivation to work out and maintain an exercise regimen may have been hard before, but today’s current circumstances have made it a lot harder. Your source for motivation can fall into one of two main categories: intrinsic (internal) meaning you do something because it makes YOU feel good, or extrinsic (external) meaning you do something due to outside influence.

All of us are both internally and externally motivated to some extent. However, some people tend to be more internally motivated, while others gravitate toward external motivation. For those that are more externally motivated, adapting and maintaining your workout routine during the current COVID-19 restrictions and closures can be difficult. The time at the gym with friends, socializing during group exercise classes, and your personal training sessions may have all been things keeping you in a routine. So how do you find the motivation to keep up your routine, or if you stopped, how do you find the motivation to get back into it?

First and foremost, motivation is not something that will appear without any work. The blunt fact is that you will need to put in some effort. Start by creating a S.M.A.R.T goal – specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, time-bound. One frequent example of a goal is wanting to lose weight before a vacation, however, saying that you want to lose 20 pounds for your vacation in a month is not realistic. A more realistic goal would be losing 5 pounds in the month before your vacation because it is specific, can be measured (e.g. weigh yourself weekly), fits within the recommended weekly weight loss of 1-2 pounds (i.e. is attainable and realistic), and is time-bound (i.e. 1 month). After you lay out your S.M.A.R.T. goal, you can develop a plan of reaching that goal with contingency plans if you get off track.

Remember to keep things simple and enjoyable! Life is already stressful and constantly changing amidst the pandemic; the goal is not to add more stress. By setting small, attainable goals, you can work your way toward that overarching goal.

Our Wellness Center is one way that you can take that first step toward reaching your physical and wellness goals. We have staff on hand that can assist with learning how to use our cardio and weight machines, or who can offer advice on workouts.