Gym Motivation: How to get out of a Rut and Achieve Your Goals

Goals don’t work unless you do. And you don’t work unless you’re motivated. But staying motivated isn’t always an easy task.

That’s why we’ve come up with this foolproof plan to get you (and keep you!) motivated.

These 7 tactics are guaranteed to pump you up and get you motivated—try one or all next time you’re thinking about skipping the gym for a few days…or weeks.

1. Write out your “why”

Write out your “why.” The first step in reaching your fitness goals is getting clear on why you have them in the first place. Why do you show up to 5:45 AM spin class? Why do you eat fruits and veggies every day? Once you figure that out, write it down in bold lettering and read it out loud every day; preferably in the morning or before your workout. This serves as a great reminder and motivation boost. Example: To run 2 km without needing a break.

2. Schedule gym dates

When you have an important date or meeting, you probably take care not to miss them, ever. Treat your gym sessions the same; write them down in your planner or on your calendar, or schedule them in your phone, and refuse not to show up for yourself.

3. Plan your workout ahead of time

Whether you’re lifting weights, going on a run, or flowing through yoga, planning your workout ahead of time is a surefire way to stay focused and avoid the excuse of, “I don’t know what to do.”

4. Always be prepared

It’s impossible to get a good workout in without the proper equipment. One way to make sure that never happens is by packing a gym bag ahead of time with all the essentials: clothing, shoes, water bottle, and earphones and keeping it in your car or at your desk. This way, no matter where the day takes you, you’ll always be prepared to get a good sweat in.

5. Don’t do it alone

Everything is better with friends in tow. Grab your pals and sign up for a spin class or ask your bestie to hit the trails with you after work. Turn gym time into an excuse to hang out. Sure, you won’t be chatting it up much as you push through a boot camp, but you can always grab drinks or dinner after.

6. Find what you love

There are thousands of ways to get in a good sweat session: weight lifting, running, yoga, pilates, hiking, athletics, and tons more. Find a few options that don’t feel like torture, and stick to those until you feel comfortable enough to step out of your comfort zone. Staying motivated is a lot easier when you’re having fun.

7. Blast the perfect playlist

​Music is a workout’s best friend. Thanks to apps like Spotify and Apple Music, you can curate the ultimate playlist to keep you energised and motivated through even the toughest workouts.

Next time you’re thinking about staying in and skipping the gym, utilise these 7 tactics to get (and stay!) motivated.

Author’s note: I turn my phone on silent at the gym so that I’m not distracted by incoming notifications or emails from work or friends. It’s way too easy to get lost in Instagram when you’re supposed to be working out.

RELATED: A Guide to the FITT Principle

​Gym Motivational Quotes

Remember, even the greatest achievers of all time need some extra motivation sometimes.

“It always seems impossible until it’s done.” – Nelson Mandela

“It’s not whether you get knocked down; it’s whether you get up.” – Vince Lombardi

“When you’ve got something to prove, there’s nothing greater than a challenge.” – Terry Bradshaw

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Kaili Meyer

Kaili Meyer Health and Wellness writer A health and wellness writer, Kaili loves trying out new ways to sweat—like mountain climbing and hot yoga—and following it up with a delicious homemade Buddha Bowl. As a writer and editor, Kaili has written for multiple fitness and nutrition companies as well as health and wellness magazines. She also runs her own website:, where she delves into the latest trends and topics in the health world. When she’s not tossing weight around in the gym, Kaili can be found cuddled up with her cat Oliver and reading a good book, or booking a flight across the world without a plan.