Let’s get motivated!

As the holiday season approaches, many clients will fall to the wayside only to surface January 1st, two steps back and they return with a new goal in mind. Now this may seem like the ideal client for the gym industry- it does make for a great sale- but this isn’t ideal for the person, who statistically falls off after 3 months. I don’t mean to point any fingers here, but just trying ruffle some feathers to uncover those of you who are really ready to make a serious commitment towards lifestyle changes.

Motivation is to be described as the direction and intensity of effort. The direction of effort refers to whether one seeks out, approaches, or is attracted to situations; while intensity of effort refers to how much effort one puts for in a situation (Boyd, 2014). Now everyone is different, but some of the common reasons for beginning an exercise routine are health factors, weight loss, fitness, self challenge, and feeling better. These initial reasons are a great start, but it is important that those initial reasons slide to the bottom of the list making room for reasons why individuals continue to exercise.

Not everyone is motivated the same way, some individuals might be more intrinsically motivated, while others extrinsically motivated. Extrinsic motivation involves participating in an activity for the reward or punishment- meaning exercising because you like to eat McDonalds on your days off (Hunter, 2008). Intrinsic motivation is derived from the enjoyment of the activity- Whaaaat, you actually like the feeling of sweat in your eyes?! Most clients start out being more extrinsically motivated, and it is our job as personal trainers to help our clients gain some intrinsic motivation. One way that Perform for Life fosters intrinsic motivation is that we are always going to provide an environment for clients to be successful and experience pride in their accomplishments.

Enough with all the words. Let’s be real, everyone is looking for the list of tips!

How to not only achieve your results during the holidays but also become more intrinsically motivated forever:

  • Set specific not general goals

Ex: General goal: lose inches around my waist

Specific: lose 2 inches around my belly button.

  • Set challenging but realistic goals
  • Set long term and short term goals
  • Ink it, don’t think it

Write it down. Take a picture! Make it fun!

  • Support!

Who supports you other than your coach with your goals?

  • Evaluation and feedback

Goals change, things happen. It’s ok to tweak things.


Give yourself some rewards every now and again. Donuts, pizza, a margarita, treat yourself! 

Now, I know all of these steps sound lengthy and intimidating, but it is our job as your coaches to help you succeed. There is no better reward than seeing a client go above and beyond their goal. Success is not going to come easy, but once fat pants become your skinny pants, you’ll forget all about the burpees and you’ll relish in the fact that you actually enjoy them now.

Happy lifting!



Boyd, M. (2014) Goal setting. [Powerpoint slides].

Boyd, M. (2014). Motivation. [Powerpoint slides].

Hunter, S. (2008). Promoting intrinsic motivation in clients. Strength and conditioning journal, 30 (1). 52-54.



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