As a group fitness instructor, I have lots of power phrases I use to fire up the motivation and effort in my fitness classes, and on my exercise DVDs. Giving my classes some encouragement and high energy motivation is second nature to me now, but I never forget the impact a few short words can have on people.
Just a few words put together can inspire people to push through a tough workout, stick it out or give max effort. What's even cooler is that these power phrases can influence you positively even when you aren't working out. Make sure you have a few power phrases tucked in your back pocket to push through a tough day, a bad mood or a negative encounter with someone. Here are some I like to use:
1. Yes you can.
This is one of my favorites. Just telling yourself you can do something can mean the difference between sticking with a workout or throwing in the towel. Tell your brain you can do it and your body will follow. Don't want to dive into a big overwhelming project? Just tell yourself, “Yes you can!” and follow it up with action. Mind over matter, right?
2. Challenge to change.
What's that definition of insanity again? Oh yeah, it's doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. If you want change, you have to challenge yourself. It applies to fitness, but when you really think about it, it applies to everything! You have to push yourself outside of your comfort zone if you want things to be different. Each day you can challenge yourself to change up something, take a risk or try something new. Maybe it's your workout duration or intensity. Maybe it's your priorities. Or maybe you challenge your excuses! Challenge to change, my friends!
3. You didn’t come for easy.
Ha! When I say this to my classes, I think I hear a few giggles in between the grunts. While we all have moments when we might wish our workouts were easier, ultimately we know our bodies benefit when we push past easy. And if you want a good sweat, you have to push that bod of yours! This one applies to life too. We may wish life were easy, but if we didn't have the tough stuff, we wouldn't appreciate the days that are easy breezy.
4. You've got this.
Tell yourself you're in the control seat with your workouts and you will be. Oh, but you can use this little gem outside of the gym too. Next time you're up against something you aren't sure how you'll tackle, or don't know if you can figure it out, just try saying, “I've got this!” Doesn't that make you feel like you've got grit? Oh, yeah!
5. You are stronger than you think!
We all have a tendency to underestimate our inner strength and our physical strength. When you tell yourself that you're stronger than you give yourself credit for, you rise to the occasion. You rise to your own view of yourself, so tell yourself you're stronger than you think. And repeat.
6. You can do anything for 20 seconds!
During my high-intensity workouts, it helps to remind people that they can push through the toughest 20 seconds. When you know the hard stuff will end shortly, you dig in and get ‘er done. Bad mood? Bad day? Remind yourself that this too shall pass. It may not end in 20 seconds, but things will get brighter again, I promise.
Arm yourself with a power phrase! Don't you feel fired up just reading them? Thinking up some power phrases that really resonate with you is a great tool to get through challenging workouts or challenging moments. The trick is to keep them short and simple. Find one or two that really kicks your butt or snaps you out of your funk. Now you have some built-in motivators for when you need them most!