Habits of Fit People: Leave Your Gear at the Gym

By , SparkPeople Blogger
You want to be a fit person, right? That's why I'm sharing my own habits for keeping fit and staying healthy in the ongoing Habits of Fit People series.

Here's one that works for me: Leaving my fitness gear in the gym locker room. I don't mean paying extra for a locker where you can stash your stuff overnight. I mean leaving it at the gym so that you have to return to get it—and therefore work out. So why does something like this matter?

I know it's in my best interest to hit the gym after work for Spinning class or strength training, but some days I just want to go home and skip the gym altogether. I'm sure you know what that's like. On days like these, I have to pull out the big guns to get myself there. This secret has nothing to do with willpower and everything to do with forcing myself (lovingly, of course!) to go.

You see, my gym is on my way to work and therefore on my way home—the perfect location no matter what time of day I want to exercise. If I have a feeling that I'll head home after work instead of doing my workout, I stop by the gym during the day—before work or maybe during lunchtime—and leave my gym bag in the locker room. This way, I am forced to return at night to get my stuff and work out while I'm there. I'm not about to walk in to the gym just to walk right back out, gym bag in tow. Getting there is half the battle! And because my gym (and every gym I have ever belonged to) only offers "day" lockers, I know I can't leave my stuff there overnight or else my lock will get cut and my belongings will be history. This habit has never failed me yet.

If you belong to a gym with day lockers—especially if that gym is nearby your workplace or somewhere on the way—this is a great technique to use if you're having trouble motivating yourself to go. If you don't belong to a gym, get creative. Planning to meet your friend for a morning run? Stop by the night before and drop off something you NEED the next day to ensure you'll be there bright and early. There are plenty of ways to make exercise something that you have to do, and for many, that's the incentive they need to make sure it happens!

Have you ever used this technique (or something similar) to make sure you'll work out? Did it work for you? Are you willing to try it?