How to Stay Motivated While Bodybuilding

Ever have a day where you just lack the motivation to work out and/or eat healthily? If you have, you are not alone. Being motivated is very important both in bodybuilding and in everyday life. Only the truly motivated will reach their goals. How do you keep from eating junk food? How do you keep training day after day while only seeing little to no improvement with your body? If you are serious about achieving your fitness goals, being motivated is the only way of obtaining them.

You’ve all heard the story about the mom lifting up a car to rescue her baby as it is trapped underneath. Why do you think she was able to lift up the car when on a normal day she wouldn’t have been able to lift up a tire? It is the same way when you are at a job or getting ready for a big test at school. You have a motive for doing something and will achieve what you want at all costs.

So how do you improve your motivation? Read on for some of the best tips:

1. First, set a goal. This will give you an outside source to look at and as you review it every day, you will become more and more motivated as you come closer to achieving it. Having to look in the mirror every day is enough motivation for me and seeing a big fat roll hanging out of my shirt would make me feel ashamed. Furthermore, ask yourself why you would want to have a fit body or why you would want to become a bodybuilder? Whatever your reason may be, what matters at the end of the day is that you must do it for yourself and you must enjoy yourself while doing it. Most bodybuilding workouts end up being successful simply because the participants are consistent and work earnestly to improve themselves. Don’t ever lose sight of the initial goal that had inspired you to take up bodybuilding in the first place. Motivate yourself onward towards success.

2. You also need to give yourself treats like buying a new bodybuilding supplement or having a small cheat meal when the weekend comes around. I always know that after I get done training that I get some simple carbs which keep me motivated to finish the workout.

3. You have to love the feeling when people compliment your body. It is a feeling of satisfaction and makes you want to keep going. On the flip side, you also hear the complainers and people with sorry excuses as to why they are fat and out of shape. These people put everyone else down because of their jealousy. So you must decide which one of these people you want to be. The ones receiving the compliments or the ones doing the complaining? It’s your choice.

4. If you’ve ever felt there was something holding you back in life, ruining your plans, and stopping you from being who you want to be, you were right. The fact is, there is a single source of all your problems, stress, unhappiness, and self-doubt. It’s called the reactive mind – the hidden part of your mind that stores all painful experiences and then uses them against you.

5. Remember, the average person does not need to train as if they are trying out for the Olympics! Exercising as little as three times a week for 20-60 minutes will bring results.

6. Simply thinking optimistically or positively is yet another awesome way to stay motivated. Choose not to think negative thoughts because they do not lead to productivity or results. Knowing that exercise improves our health is a good incentive. Do it for yourself. Do it for those who love you. Furthermore, think about everything that you have accomplished and everything that you can accomplish!

7. Choose an activity that you enjoy doing. Join a gym, ride a bike, go for walks, take exercise classes…just get the body in motion on a regular basis.

8. Exercising on a regular basis burns calories. No need to go on an extreme eating program, just make healthier food choices. When feeling sluggish, remember that exercise is invigorating. Instead of curling up on the couch or going for those chips, get physical.

9. Exercise is not an all or nothing endeavor. Do what you can when you can. If you miss a few exercise sessions it’s not the end of the world – or your program. Just get back to it. Your body remembers it and it will respond by feeling and looking great.

10. Maintain a bodybuilding log book to record your progress, or to set and achieve goals, during the course of your bodybuilding program. For example, on a certain day, you could note down in your logbook that you want to do 10 reps that day (even though you only did 8 reps last time) and then at the end of the day, you could come back and record, whether you managed it and you could also write down comments about how it went. Other examples would be writing down how you could improve your diet and rest habits. This act of keeping a record can serve as a huge motivating factor.

11. To ensure success, be committed to your bodybuilding workouts and ensure that you are changing your old habits. You have to understand that the perfect body that you want to develop is not easy to get and that building muscle and burning fat can take a lot of time, so be patient and don’t become demoralized. The bodybuilding process might be very strenuous, painful and a lot of hard work, but stick to your program. Go to the gym regularly, do your exercises daily. You might get sore and tired, but realize that this is helping you form your perfect body.

12. For the best fitness results, you have to change your diet. Eat smaller meals but more frequently, with more protein intake in your diet because it helps muscle development. Drinking more water will help in optimizing your muscle volume. Ingest limited amounts of sugar, salt, and alcohol, and obviously cut down on your fat consumption. This, along with proper rest and sleep, will help you feel your best, which will ultimately help keep you motivated.

13. Have a gym buddy. Basically, you can keep each other in check. For instance, on days you just do not feel like working out, he or she can give you that extra push to hit the gym (and vice versa). Additionally, he or she can give you that additional push in the gym to power through that last grueling set.

14. Think more in the short term. Yes, it is good to have a long term goal in mind, but do not obsess over it (you do not want to overwhelm yourself). Nothing happens overnight! That said, focus more on what you specifically need to accomplish one day at a time. In other words, take things one step at a time. You will find that you’ll feel much more accomplished and motivated by constantly completing your short term goals (which builds your long term goal).

15. Having a back-up plan in place is another good idea. For example, an event may suddenly arise when you plan to hit the gym. If this happens, have a plan in place to work out at another time, such as during your lunch break. Another example would be that something could come up that prevents you from preparing a healthy homemade meal. Instead of visiting a fast food restaurant, always have something healthy made ahead of time (maybe leftovers) on hand. The bottom line is when such situations arise, it can be overwhelming and you can simply become unmotivated. Having a plan in place ahead of time prevents you from potentially making an unhealthy choice.

16. Mix things up from time to time. Doing the same exercise routine and eating the same meals all the time can become boring and daunting. Additionally, changing up your exercise routine is a good thing because you do not want your body to get used to it and plateau.

If you want further motivation and inspiration, here are some bodybuilding themed poems and quotes. We’ll start out with my favorite:

Don’t Quit (Author unknown)
When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,
When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,
When the funds are low and the debts are high,
And you want to smile, but you have to sigh,
When care is pressing you down a bit,
Rest, if you must, but don’t you quit.

Life is strange with its twists and turns,
As every one of us sometimes learns,
And many a failure turns about,
When he might have won had he stuck it out;
Don’t give up though the pace seems slow,
You may succeed with another blow.

Often the goal is nearer than,
It seems to a faint and faltering man,
Often the struggler has given up,
When he might have captured the victor’s cup,
And he learned too late when the night slipped down,
How close he was to the golden crown.

Success is failure turned inside out,
The silver tint of the clouds of doubt,
And you never can tell how close you are,
It may be near when it seems so far,
So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit,
It’s when things seem worst that you must not quit.

Motivational Bodybuilding Quotes

The legendary Arnold Schwarzenegger is truly an inspiration due to all of his accomplishments. One of our favorite bodybuilding training quotes by him is,

“Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength.”

In other words, do not focus so much on the end result; it’s the experience that gets you to the result that matters. Focus more on the present situation, such as a bodybuilding workout, even if it is difficult. Additionally, never give up because in the long term, you will become a better person.

Another bodybuilding training quote that we like a lot is also by Arnold.

It states, “It is one thing to idolize heroes. It is quite another to visualize yourself in their place. When I saw great people, I said to myself, “I can be there.”

Instead of just looking up to inspirational people, you should strive to be like them. In fact, Arnold himself is a perfect example of one of these motivational people. Anyone into bodybuilding should definitely try their best to be like him in terms of everything that he has attained in the sport.

A third motivational bodybuilding training quote that we love is by the football coach and player Vince Lombardi.

“Success rests not only on ability, but upon commitment, loyalty, and pride.”

What we feel is most important about this quote is that it states that in order to be successful in anything, you need to be fully committed to it with a good attitude. Commitment and attitude most definitely play a huge role in all aspects of bodybuilding!

A fourth bodybuilding training quote that we really like is also by Vince. It is somewhat similar to the first quote stated by Arnold.

“It’s not whether you get knocked down, it’s whether you get up that matters.”

The main message here is that you should not get discouraged by any setbacks. Instead, it is important to dust yourself off, move forward, and try again. Success comes from persistence!

A fifth and final inspiring quote that can be applied to any bodybuilding workout is…

“I have a theory that if I give 100% all of the time, somehow things will work out in the end.”

This one is by Larry Bird, an NBA basketball coach, and former player. This quote is pretty straightforward; never take shortcuts or the easy way out. Always give everything your all because if you do, you will eventually reach your goal.


The bottom line is that sticking to an exercise and healthy meal plan can be difficult at times due to a lack of motivation. However, it is important to stick to it and take effective bodybuilding supplements in order to get the results that you want. Keep the tips mentioned in mind so you know what to do the next time you feel unmotivated. Proper planning makes for perfect results. Make this year your year to get in the best shape of your life. The truth is that what someone works at hard enough and long enough he will eventually get. The only way you can fail is if you quit.

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