Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Tuesday's Tip

Create a mantra.

There's a lot to be said about the power of suggestion. We all have those days where we are having trouble focusing and we just can't pull it together. What do you do if that focus is being lost when it comes to your workout? That's where a mantra comes in to save the day!

The word "mantra" is derived from two Sanskrit words. The first is "manas" or "mind," which provides the "man" syllable. The second syllable is drawn from the Sanskrit word "trai" meaning to "protect" or to "free from." Therefore, the word mantra in its most literal sense means "to free from the mind." Mantra is, at its core, a tool used by the mind. But, no worries, I'm not preaching some religious nonsense. A mantra doesn't have to be used only in a Buddhist temple - it can be used anytime you are feeling less than wonderful and can be used anywhere, a grocery store, the bank, in your home, at the gym...

For the purpose of this blog, I am going to focus on a workout mantra. This is something you say, in your head, when things are getting tough. The trick to creating a mantra is to have a conversation with yourself about what motivates you. The real ones. Not the motivators that you tell people. Most women say they work out for "health" when in fact, most work out to fit into a pair of skinny jeans. So think about a few things that motivate you into fitness and build your mantra from there.

For instance, when I was a working Mom, I was trying really hard to fit into the mold of the young sales professional at the company where I was employed. Knowing that sales incentive trips would be coming up, my mantra was "Size 4. Size 4. Size 4. Size 4. Bikini and a tan" I would repeat that over and over in my head and it would keep me going. I know that sounds shallow and I hesitated writing it here, but I need you to know that YOUR motivators can be whatever you want them to be. Don't worry about having them be socially acceptable.

Think about your motivators and what will help you get through or even get to your workout and give a mantra a try. The Little Engine That Could did it and so can you!

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