Top 20 exercise motivators – from fitting into old clothes to boosting confidence Leave a comment


What motivates you to keep fit?

A study of 2,000 adults reveals the top 50 list of reasons to get moving – from getting competitive with partners to fitting into old clothes.

Others say they don’t want to let there training buddies down.

And it seems mental health has an impact too – with many exercising to feel more confident, happier and proud they’ve achieved physical goals.

It also emerged that a quarter have lacked motivation since the lockdowns began compared to before, with 23% putting this down to not having anything to train towards.

A further fifth attribute this to not being in a gym environment, while 15% have struggled because they haven’t been able to work out with friends.



Woman exercising together
Fitness buffs are often motivated to workout by their friends

Despite this, a sizeable 29% have turned to online workouts during the lockdowns.

A fifth believe they exercise best when someone is telling them what to do.

The research, commissioned by Sure to launch its Movemate Series, found 20% are boosted or spurred on when working out with or around others.

More than a third admit they don’t often push themselves as much as they should when exercising and a quarter don’t put in as much effort when working out on their own.

And the most encouraging things a fitness buddy or personal trainer can say were found to include ‘keep going’, ‘little but often can make a huge difference’ and ‘don’t give up’.



Young Woman Doing Yoga Meditation and Stretching Exercises
It’s been difficult for some to stay motivated during lockdown

However, only 13% of those polled are the ‘motivator’ when they work out with others, while 30% are the one who needs motivating.

Researchers also found 14% of adults ‘always’ lose enthusiasm to work out, while 29% often do.

Alice Duffill, from Sure Women, said: “It’s easy to lose motivation when exercising, especially at this time of the year and during the current climate of lockdown.

“People have lost the routine of exercising with friends, partners and even personal trainers, which has had a knock on effect.

“It’s clear that team workouts require the least motivation, showing how having someone else cheering you on or working towards the same goal has a positive impact.

“But in lockdown, it’s been hard to get the most out of our workouts, which is why we’re excited to launch the Movemate Series which is designed to inspire confidence in everyone to move more.”

  1. To take your mind off other things
  2. To achieve something
  3. To increase your overall confidence
  4. Wanting to hit a target weight
  5. To improve your sleep
  6. To prove to yourself you can exercise
  7. Going on holiday
  8. Wanting to fit into old clothes
  9. To shake off a bad mood
  10. You get a buzz from exercising / feeling fit
  11. To zone out from your thoughts e.g. work stress or relationship woes
  12. Weighing yourself for the first time in months
  13. Wanting to feel confident in swimwear
  14. Seeing old photos
  15. Going travelling
  16. Knowing that if you exercise you can reward yourself e.g. with food or a purchase
  17. To improve your skin
  18. Advice from your GP
  19. To prove to others your can exercise
  20. Wanting to take up a new hobby

The study, commissioned via OnePoll, also found factors which keep people going included nice weather (44%), upbeat music (33%) and thinking of the end goal (33%).

And the exercises people need the biggest boost for included a solo brisk walk, a visit to the gym on their own and a lone jog.

Whereas team sports, a group run and a bike ride with others require the least motivation, suggesting it’s more difficult to get going when working out alone.

The nation’s favourite exercises were revealed as cycling, running and water-based sports such as swimming.

The research comes after a separate pilot study by Sure with partnered exercise-enthusiasts found that 70% work harder when joined by a partner for a workout.

Six in ten observed a higher heart rate and more than half claimed they burnt almost twice the calories.

It also revealed a boost in the enjoyment of exercise when in company, with respondents’ mood improving every time, as well as their sense of pride and achievement.

Sure’s Movemate Content Series is an online content hub helping Brits to make their workout routines more effective, simply by buddying up.

It provides virtual workouts curated and demonstrated by some of the leading fitness influencers for those looking to partner up and make their workouts work harder.

Chartered sports psychologist, Dr Josephine Perry, said: “We all know we should be exercising and that it brings lots of benefits but when motivation is low and stress levels are high it can be hard to get going.

“Psychological studies have found that one of the best ways to boost motivation is to exercise with others; it makes us work harder, increases our accountability and, most importantly, makes it more fun.

“That sense of connection to someone else is a brilliant secret weapon when trying to get fit and stay more active”.





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