Four Types of Motivation to Achieve Your Goals

Are you more likely to accomplish a task if you’ve scheduled in time to complete it, or you know that you’ll receive a reward when you finish it? We are all motivated in different ways! When it comes to pushing yourself to achieve your fitness goals, consider these four types of motivation. You may want to combine two of them or hone in on one of them. 


Prepare for a successful morning workout by setting out gym clothes, scheduling the coffee maker to brew, and placing tennis shoes by the front door before going to bed. Although these simple tasks do not require much thought, they are a great way to motivate yourself to get up and work out. 

I do this in preparation for my morning run. I automatically throw on my workout clothes because they are the first things I see when I wake up. I easily pour myself a cup of Joe because it’s already made. I quickly slip on my tennis shoes because they are easy to find. Until I walk out the front door, I haven’t even had to think about what I’m going to do to get myself out the door. 


At the beginning of each week, set aside ten minutes to plan your workouts for the upcoming seven days. By scheduling in how and when you plan to exercise, you’ll have a clear understanding of what your week will look like and what you need to accomplish to have a successful week of workouts. 

I have a large dry-erase calendar hanging in my office. Each Sunday, I grab my marker and plan out my workouts for the week. If I know that I have an early meeting one day that week, I’ll move my morning run to the late afternoon. If the weatherman predicts a rainy week, I’ll plan on completing a majority of my workouts at the gym. 


What is something that you enjoy doing or consuming? Consider that thing to be your reward for accomplishing your workouts. That might be to enjoy a warm chocolate chip cookie on Friday night, cuddle up on the couch to binge your favorite TV show, or purchase a new outfit on Saturday when you’ve successfully completed your workouts for the week. 

I enjoy getting massages. They relax and rejuvenate my sore muscles. Often, I will plan on completing a certain amount of workouts before scheduling a massage. This motivates me to stay on track and push my body, knowing that I have an enjoyable massage to look forward to. 


Start by establishing a goal that you want to achieve. Once you have that nailed down, determine what you need to do to accomplish it. Maybe you want to fit into a certain jean size or hike a challenging trail. Place your goal at the forefront of your mind, imagine how you’d feel once you complete it, and do everything it takes to achieve it. 

Before my trip to Yosemite, I knew I needed to be able to walk, run, and climb uphill to complete my goal of hiking through Yosemite. I scheduled additional workouts throughout the weeks leading up to my adventure. If I hadn’t trained specifically for the uphill hikes, I wouldn’t have been able to complete my goal. 

Which type of motivation would help you achieve your goals? Consider implementing one or combining two to motivate you to conquer your fitness goals. For more tips on making the most of motivation, tune in to Episode 33 of the Fit Is Freedom podcast

Comments 4

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  1. Helpful review of motivation. A new idea for me is scheduling ahead for the week and checking the weather to plan for bad weather alternatives to my standard routine. Typically, this is my most common reason for skipping.
    Since working with you, one of my newer goal motivations is keeping up with active friends.

    1. Post

      Kay, I love this and I’m adding the “keeping up with active friends” to my goals too. It is so easy for me to just put blinders on and focus exclusively on my workouts, alone 🙁 Also, totally love keeping an eye on the weather and creating alternatives to your workouts based on weather. Living in Houston as we both do, it’s hard to know what’s coming our way weather-wise on a consistent basis! It is always so good working with you, thanks!

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