I’m one of those people that just adores working out, but I wasn’t always programmed that way. As a result, I empathize with the new clients that come to me stating that they don’t love working out. Having hired my owner personal trainer when I began my journey 23 years ago, part of what I was looking for was the source of that inner drive that would motivate me to do it on my own, to exercise without needing an appointment with someone to hold me accountable. This was the holy grail, especially for a woman who spent all her life at that point as an overweight and unhealthy, piano playing and nerdy computer engineer. I knew that if I could figure out the secret to the gym motivation and what it was that caused certain people to always show up at the gym—you know the type—that I would find the path to a healthier and better me. In the three and a half years I worked with my trainer, I discovered the first of two principles that motivates people to consistently workout and/or go to the gym and that’s HABIT. Steven Covey, in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People states, “We are not a product of our feelings and emotions, rather we are a product of our habits.” How true this is when it comes to consistent and regular exercise.
Early on in my training journey, when my trainer would call to cancel a session my first thought would instantly turn to “Yay for the snow day!” but after a couple of years I noticed the paradigm shift that occurred within me when one night when he called to cancel and instead of being excited about getting out of my training, I shocked even myself when I said to him, “No problem, I’ll go to the gym on my own.” This started a process of me slowly weaning myself from the trainer and ultimately was the start of my personal training career as I felt that I had found that holy grail. What had happened to me? How had I transformed?
Habit, my friends, sheer habit. I had seen the trainer for a couple of years and hardly missed any weeks and so this habit of going to the gym three times per week was built. I had gotten so accustomed to the habit of going, plus I was getting good results. It felt odd if I didn’t go, as if I was missing something because I actually started to like it. It didn’t hurt as much anymore, and it wasn’t as hard to make it through a workout, plus I became a “regular” and found a community within the gym that helped motivate me to return for future workouts. Thus, a gym-rat was born. Invest in yourself and find your inner gym-rat, whether you want to fit into your skinny jeans or just feel fit enough to tackle life’s challenges, we are here for you.