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The Gym Rut: How to Get Back in the Swing of Regular Workouts

The Gym Rut: How to Get Back in the Swing of Regular Workouts

Even avid gym-goers hit a gym rut every once in a while. Switching up your routine can help you get back to working out.
FitnessVigil Staff
Even the most devoted gym rats sometimes skip a few workouts. When a few skipped workouts turns into a week or two of gym avoidance, you're in what is called a gym rut. You can't seem to motivate yourself to go back to the gym no matter what you do, even though you never hated going to the gym in the first place. You find every excuse possible not to get on that treadmill or hit the weight room, and before you know it, you have spent a month away from the gym. How do you get back into it? The best way is to switch it up!

Switch Up Your Workout

No one ever said all workouts have to happen at the gym. Part of what is keeping you away from an indoor workout might be a spout of really nice weather. If you usually run or walk on a treadmill, why not run or walk outside? You can burn calories and enjoy the sunshine at the same time!

If you can't get outside or nice weather isn't the problem, try adding new moves to your workout or switching some of the old stuff around. Try a new yoga or dance class. Lift weights instead of running. Do the stair machine instead of the stationary bike. You may just find your new, favorite workout. Trying out a class is a really great way to meet new people, too, and add a social aspect to your workout. If you know there will be someone there for you to talk to, going to the gym can sometimes be a lot easier.

Similarly, if you're usually a workout loner, try bringing a friend along. When there is someone there to chat with, time flies, and when you know your friend is depending on you to be there, you might find yourself more motivated.

Switch Up Your Schedule

If you usually workout after work, but suddenly find yourself too tired or too busy to get to the gym after the work day, try going to the gym in the morning before work or during your lunch break. Likewise, if you work out in the morning but can't get yourself out of bed, maybe it's time to try a later workout time. Lots of times, our schedule or workloads change suddenly, which can make us tired or overwhelmed. Picking a different time to go work out may help you break the rut. If you're one of those people who don't have much of a schedule at all, try sticking to a routine. When you get into that routine, getting to the gym is easy.

Switch Up Your iPod

When listening to music at the gym, you can sometimes hear the same song upwards of five times every week. After a while, you just don't even hear it anymore. By creating a brand-new workout playlist or grabbing a new, up-beat CD, you can avoid the music rut that sometimes leads to a gym rut. By loading your iPod with new power songs, you can power-up your gym time and motivate yourself to get there more often.

Switch Up Your Reading Material

When all else fails, you can try to keep your mind occupied while your body is working. If you like to read while doing your cardio workouts, try getting a magazine or book that you don't let yourself take out of the gym back until you get to the gym. By only allowing yourself to read your new material during your workouts, you should find yourself motivated to get back there, if only to continue your book or read an article that looked interesting.