Have you ever been in the middle of a tough workout and felt like you just can’t continue? You think, “I can’t do 30 more seconds of this exercise!”
What’s really happening here? It is really your body that can’t do more or is your mind telling you that you can’t do it? It you can’t do it, you won’t get results!
Of course you should always make sure you are not pushing yourself to the point of injury. If that’s the case, listen to your body.
Under normal circumstances, your mind is what usually helps push you though a hard workout. It takes time to develop the strength of mind but you can do it.
When I was training for a running race, it was my mind that pushed me to increase my speed. I really wanted to stop and just walk but working on my mental strength helped me to push through and accomplish my goal.
What is Mental Toughness?
When it comes to accomplishing any goal, mental strength is what helps you get through it.
When you feel like you can’t move forward, it’s your mind that helps push you to the next step in whatever you want to achieve.
Have you ever wondered why some top athletes are so successful? It has to do with desire, attitude and persistent discipline.
Training your mind to be tough is as important as training your body.
3 Ways to Improve Mental Toughness for Exercise
Here are three surefire ways to get mentally tough to take on any fitness challenge.
1 – Focus on Positive Self-talk
Have you ever not pursued a goal because you felt like you just can’t do it?
I love this Henry Ford saying, “Whether you think you can, or you think you can’t–you’re right.”
What’s really stopping you from running that extra mile or doing another few reps of your exercise routine?
If you keep telling yourself:
I can’t run another step.
I can’t do another rep.
If you keep telling yourself that you can’t do it, you’ve given in to defeat. You can push through a hard workout just by changing your mindset about it.
On the other hand, you can change your self talk to something like this:
I can run another mile, one step at a time.
I can do another rep, and another, and another.
I can do this!
If you tell yourself you cannot do something, guess what? You’ve already failed before even starting.
It really works. I was training for a running race and increase my speed by minutes just by keeping positive self-talk in my mind. So many time I just wanted to stop but I told myself to keep going another step, and then another.
You can do this!
2 – Take it one step at a time
When you start a new fitness program, have you ever felt overwhelmed at the thought of 80 days of workouts?
It’s overwhelming to think about all that you want to accomplish. You may want to lose a lot of weight or get your body in better shape.
It won’t happen all at once so break it down day by day. Just do the exercise routine for that day and eat for that day.
Your mental toughness will kick in when you don’t feel so overwhelmed. Plus at the end of the day, you’ll feel a great sense of accomplishment which will help your mind push you though workouts day after day.
For running, mental strength is what pushes me to achieve more. I break it down to half mile chunks that I can focus on until I complete the mileage for the day.
It really works to push through a hard workout.
3 – Use a Checklist
Having a checklist is a great way to focus on little things and stay motivated through small accomplishments.
When I am training for a race, I use a training plan to help my body adjust and achieve new things.
By following a step-by-step plan, I can check it off my list each list. That helps to motivate me to keep going. Motivation is an important part of mental strength.
I encourage you to keep track of your workouts by writing down how many repetitions and how much weight you lift.
Week over week, you’ll see how much you accomplished and that will help motivate your mind to continue.
Developing mental toughness is your key to achieving your fitness goals. It will help you stay positive and keep moving forward.
Mental toughness plays a key role in achieving your fitness goals. Remember, you can do anything you put your mind to.