Negative Thoughts:
Motivation's Kryptonite

Defeat those negative thoughts!

Negative thoughts can undue so much positive progress. There have been so many occasions when I’ve laid in bed and talked myself out of running or exercising…without my cheek even lifting up from the pillow! It’s the same mental barrage of negativity that I get in the first few minutes of jogging...thoughts about walking or resting…or anything to make me stop moving. But then it happens. A wave of confidence rolls in, and the feelings of wanting to quit seem to melt into a feeling of accomplishment and pride. And before I know it, the workout is done and it’s become one of the highpoints of my day.

Most of the limiting factors in life are those that we artificially place upon ourselves, very few of which are obstacles that can not be overcome. How often do you talk yourself out of trying, starting, or continuing a workout routine? To succeed in our fitness and training plans we need to overcome these negative thoughts and respond with our own self-generated barrage of positive thoughts. Fitness Motivation is like a snowball rolling down a ski slope…put time and effort into that initial push and you’ll gain enough momentum and speed to carry you though the end.

There are many mental “tricks” you can do to get started and keep going…Sometimes I start morning runs with the thought, “just get through the first mile”…because I know that after I run that first mile I’ll be awake and invigorated to complete the rest of the workout. Or other times I’ll repeat a motivational phrase to myself to stay focused such as, “I feel good”…”Just do it”…”Keep going”…or ”Getting stronger”. Try using whatever mantra that works best for you. This really can be quite effective at drowning out the negative thoughts that encourage us to quit…or never start.

Negative ideas can creep in our minds when we least expect it, and slowly spread like a motivation-killing cancer. Fight back with optimism, hope, determination, and positive thoughts. We are all much stronger and more capable than we give ourselves credit for. Don’t be afraid to push yourself through that first few minutes of the workout when your body is fighting to remain at rest…once you get rolling, you’ll be hard to stop!!

You can find this article and other motivational fitness information in the June 2007 article of The Bullhorn. You can sign up for this free monthly e-zine below.

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