8 Mantras to Motivate Yourself to Exercise

8 Mantras to Motivate Yourself to Exercise

This post is by OYS writer Melissa. You can read more about Melissa here and see all of her other posts here. Check out Melissa’s blog Nutrition and Wellness for Life. She offers wellness consultation services that focus on helping you eat better and exercise more.  She also has a FB page!!

I love mantras for everything in life.  Yes, sometimes they can be a little corny, but they can also be very powerful if you give them a chance.  Mantras are meant to be something you say to yourself or post visually so that you see it and hear it repeatedly.  Eventually, you will come to believe whatever it is you are saying to yourself and seeing in writing.

Mantras are another little motivation tool you can try to help you keep a regular exercise routine.  We all have those days where we come up with excuses for skipping our workout.  I’m tired.  I don’t feel like it. It’s too hot out.  I have too much to do.  I’ll do it tomorrow.  As soon as we start making the excuses, our mind is already made up, and the workout doesn’t happen.  Instead, turn to a mantra (or two or three). Have one ready to go on a post-it on your computer at work.  Have one set to pop up on your phone as a reminder.  Say it loud to yourself, several times.  A mantra can be strong enough to push the excuses out of the way and get your butt to the gym.  Here are some of my favorites.


Every journey begins with a single step.

This mantra is great for exercise newbies.  If you are feeling overwhelmed by the gym or all of the workout choices out there, bring it back to basics.  Remember that you don’t have to be doing everything right out of the gate.  That trendy dance class at the gym?  Save it for when you get more comfortable.  Take it slow and start with the basics.  Just get used to moving your body.  This is a journey, and you have a long way to go.  If you are traveling to France, do you just snap your fingers and arrive in Paris?  We wish!  So don’t expect to just be at the end of your goals when you first start exercising.  It will take time, but if you do it right and stick with it, it will be so worth it.

3 months from now you will thank yourself.

I love this one.  Think about what you can accomplish in three months if you work out regularly.  Three months is not so far away that it seems out of reach, but it’s enough time to generate some real progress towards your goals.  If you stick with a regular exercise routine, you should see weight loss, increased muscle tone, more energy, and more endurance.  Once you see those changes after a few months, you will be so glad you persevered.

No matter how slow you go, you are still lapping everybody on the couch.

This one is for exercisers who are just not that athletic, and may never be.  That is totally okay!  You don’t have to become a marathon runner, or even try to run a 5K.  If you are moving your body, no matter how slowly or simply, you are still doing better than if you were sitting on the couch.  Don’t think that you have to go full-throttle when you exercise for it to be worth it.  Any movement is better than no movement.

I never regret it when I do it, but I always regret it when I don’t.

This is so true.  On days you just don’t feel like exercising, tell yourself that you will work out for at least 15 minutes.  If at that point you still don’t feel like exercising, you can stop.  Most likely, you will feel so good that you will continue on.  I have never regretted a workout.  I have never said, “Man, I really wish I hadn’t exercised today.”  That’s ridiculous!  But if you skip a workout, there is a pretty good chance you will wish you had done it.  

A one hour workout is 4% of your day.  No excuses.

This mantra is for those of you who think you don’t have time to exercise.  You do!  You just need to prioritize exercise and make it just as important as other things.  If an hour is still too much for you in your busy life, a half hour workout is only 2% of your day.  That is doable for everybody.  

Push harder than yesterday if you want a different tomorrow.

If you get stuck in an exercise rut or you stop seeing results, this mantra is for you.  It may be time to change up your routine.  Try something new.  Use a heavier amount of weight.  Do some interval training.  Anything that will mix it up will help you start seeing results again.

Today I will love myself enough to exercise.

Exercise does so many positive things for your physical and mental health.  If you care about your health, then you must include exercise in your life.  Take care of yourself.  Life is short, and you want to be able to enjoy it to the fullest.

You’re only one workout away from a good mood.

If you feel like skipping your exercise routine because you have had a miserable day, you should be doing just the opposite.  A workout can lift you out of your funk, make you feel powerful, and help clear your mind.  Exercise releases endorphins, those feel-good chemicals in your brain.  You will most likely feel better after a workout.  If not, well at least you burned some calories and did some good for your heart.

What are your favorite exercise mantras?


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  1. I use “every step counts”

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