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Fitness and Motivation During Lockdown

A blond woman prepares to squat with a safety squat bar.

With gyms closing everywhere and fitness enthusiasts forced to train at home, we’ve been hearing from a lot of people who feel very unmotivated.

It’s understandable that people are struggling with so much uncertainty, so many changes to how we live and increasing isolation. We don’t want to minimize the emotional toll of this period of life. 

One thing we can all appreciate: Exercise can benefit people struggling with their mental and emotional welfare. Even in calmer times, exercise is roundly regarded as a side-effect-free way to improve your mood, so let’s dive in and find some motivation to train!

When we meet with new clients, we always discuss their reasons for training and their goals. It’s so important to know why your clients really want to work out. We don’t scratch the surface. We get to the deep reasons—the reasons that will keep a person going even when challenges arise. 

So if you’re feeling unmotivated right now, it’s a great time to check in with yourself and do a little interview to find out why you work out. This might sound silly, but you might surprise yourself with this exercise.

I’ll do the interview with myself.

Q: Crystal, why do you work out? 

C: I want to look good, be very strong, stay healthy and live independently as long as possible. It also helps me manage anxiety right now. 

Q: Crystal, no one can see you, you’re locked down, who cares what you look like? 

C: Right. But I still want to be strong, stay healthy and take care of myself as long as possible. 

Q: You could get COVID or the flu or a cold, so why train to stay healthy when it’s not really in your control? 

C: Well, I believe that if I’m strong and healthy, I’ll recover faster from anything. Also, training helps me manage my anxiety. 

Q: They canceled your powerlifting meet. What’s the point of trying to be strong? 

C: Even if I can’t focus on strength goals and competition right now, I still want to move some weight to manage my anxiety and keep my confidence high. Daily workouts are essential for that.

By digging just a little deeper, I’m reminding myself of all the reasons why fitness is important to me. That prevents me from focusing only on one goal. Imagine I only had one reason to train right now and it was my powerlifting meet. I’d be crushed that it was cancelled and I wouldn’t feel like picking up a barbell. But when I dig in, I find that I have more than one reason for working out, and then I feel motivated.

Lockdown is “exposing your why.” It’s forcing you to look at yourself and challenge how you frame your goals. 

Now is a great time to take a giant step back, examine your motivation and restructure your thinking to stay on track. Moping and feeling disheartened won’t serve you. They’ll only contribute to a spiral of depression. 

Instead, get back in touch with your deepest desires and find the fire to get moving.

It doesn’t matter what you choose to do right now, either. Free Youtube videos, IG influencer workouts, your own plan, working with an online coach—it all works. As long as you’re pursuing fitness with the goal of loving yourself and taking care of yourself, chances are you’re going to continue.

Take some time to find your motivation, then do something physical. And I’d love to hear what gets you moving. Email me at crystal@crossfit204.com.

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