How to Have the Right Mindset While Exercising

Exercise creates a space in your daily life where you can put work, family, and most everything else on hold. In that hour or two, it's your time to work on yourself. Maybe it's your personal goal to increase your squat this month. Maybe you're working on perfecting a difficult yoga position or practicing your flow to teach your own class. Whatever your goals are, your mindset while exercising will make the difference between you reaching them or not. If you're not in the right headspace before walking into the gym or studio, it can be extremely difficult to concentrate. This has happened to all of us, as bad days work, family problems, and other factors take a toll on our moods. You might ask, "What can I do to make sure I have the right mindset?" There are a few things you can do to help yourself focus on the workout that lies ahead. These tips will help you maximize your time while exercising and help you reach your full potential no matter what you're doing.

Have A Plan

If you don't have a plan for what you're going to be doing for your workout, it can be easy to let yourself become distracted. Nobody wants to be that person scrolling through their social media for inspiration. This is a huge time waster and will detract from your motivation. Before you head off to the gym, studio, or wherever you exercise, outline a plan for your workout. If you're going to do a lower body focused day, find an example routine online or create one on your own with outlined sets and repetitions. This can easily be done in the notes on your phone for quick access. When you have a concrete regimen, you'll know what to do straight away without meandering from the free weights to the machines.

Leave Your Phone Alone

One of the worst things that can break you out of a focused mindset while exercising is your phone. You've probably seen someone sitting on a machine you want to use just texting or scrolling their feeds. If you can help it, avoid using your phone as much as possible so you can concentrate on getting a productive workout in and not one that feels lackluster. Creating or finding a playlist with the music you love to listen to will help you keep the phone in your bag. Make sure it's large enough to shuffle through for an hour or so. If you're worried about missing calls, simply keep your sound on and mute the notifications for texts and apps. Remember, you're exercising for a better you, so give it your all every time you set foot in the gym, studio, or wherever else.

Mental Preparation

Before you get out of your car to enter the gym or yoga studio, take a few moments to mentally prepare. Maybe you're finishing the last few sips of pre-workout or getting a little bit of water in. This is when you should think about how your workout is going to go instead of what else you have going on in your life. Sure, these things are important, but while you're exercising, think about placing problems at work, upcoming tests, or other stressors to the side for an hour. To help with this, ask yourself – "Why am I here?" Really think about this! Whatever your goals are in fitness, you need the focus, motivation, and energy to reach them. This means that the noise of everyday life needs to subside for those 60 minutes. This may take some practice to get used to, but eventually you'll be able to flip the switch into total focus to crush your workout.

Having the right mindset sets the stage for a workout that you're 100% present for. Instead of going through the motions and ticking the box on another workout, you'll feel like you really made some great progress that day. It may take a few sessions to get the hang of putting yourself in a good headspace, but soon enough you will be able to harness focus and drive for your workouts and whatever else you need it for. Take these tips beyond the gym and into your job, academic career, or anything else you have going on in your life.