The truth is, these moments are actually full of opportunities to help you develop as an athlete and as a person.
Jamie Shapiro, an associate professor of sports psychology at the University of Denver, said: “What we call ‘self-efficacy’, or if you are steadfast in those moments, has the advantage of building confidence in your ability to do something.” “It helps develop resilience and confidence.”
So it can be valuable both mentally and physically when you want to give up. It can be easier said than done. But there are strategies you can use to keep going when you are feeling tired or otherwise feeling less motivated. Importantly, knowing and being prepared for those moments is going to be the best way to make sure you get the workout you want.
“You have to be proactive and be prepared for the difficult moments ahead of time,” said Edson Philho, associate professor of sports, exercise and performance psychology at Boston University.
Philhoe thinks about strategies to use right now, such as the tools in a toolbox that you need to collect and learn to use over time. Here are some things that may work for you.
Converse with yourself
Ignoring the voice that tells you to stop is not the answer. Instead, acknowledge it and find out where it comes from. “You can have a very productive conversation with yourself about why you want to stop,” said Shapiro.
Are you feeling tired, or is it the pain that is trying to prevent injury? Stop if the injury hurts. If it is fatigue, do you need a little kindness and compassion in this moment and permission to say it at dawn?
Philho says, “Pushing through it is not always the right choice.” There is an illusion of mental fortitude that you hear a lot in sports. . ”
But it is possible that you really want to continue, and need a reminder of why you are working in the first place. Which brings us to the next suggestion …
Connect with your goals
The motivation to take goals to the gym or the first place gives us strength Reconnecting with them when you are tempted to stop can help you keep going.
“Remember that inspiration, your goals, can help you stay afloat in the moments when you feel like giving up,” said Shapiro.
Maybe you’re trying to improve your mile time, feeling stronger, or building up enough endurance to be with your kids on the playground. Shapiro notes that goals vary from person to person, but this does not make them less important.
Use a spell or visualization
Tapping a goal in an abstract way can be difficult to do right now. One way you can prepare is to translate your goal into a mantra or a visualization. This ensures that you get it, or go to a workout with a short phrase or mental image, with a picture of yourself running like a cheetah that includes what you are hoping to get out of it.
Put a song of your choice
Philho explains that when we start exercising at high intensity in a workout, we naturally begin to pay more attention to what we are doing and our body sensations, which can make it difficult to continue. “We call this attentive association,” he says.
A mental strategy can be to confuse yourself. Singing a song of your choice can cause your energy to explode and distract your brain from focusing on what your body is physically doing.
Give up perfectionism
Maybe in some workouts, the goal is not to end up at your highest performance level. Sometimes, it can just be the end. Allow to give less than you think and you will probably go further than what you claim perfection.
“Athletes and practitioners don’t always perform at the top level,” Philho said. “Most of the time people call what we call ‘effective performance levels.’ However, most people think that they should always perform at the top level. Perfectionism creates a lot of problems. “
Take the opportunity to reflect
If you find yourself repeatedly hitting a wall in your workout, you may want to move beyond the self-talk involved in finding your inspiration.
“Make sure the type of exercise or physical activity you are doing fits your lifestyle,” Shapiro said. “When you have that voice of ‘I can’t do this’, you may be wondering, what could be better for me right now?”
Remember, the best form of exercise is what you do. So keep pushing, but keep listening.
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