Feeling unmotivated, tired or discouraged? Sport scientists have tested the best methods for getting out of a slump and back to your personal best
F or most of my adult life, exercise was an ordeal. Even mild workouts felt gruelling and I left the gym in a fouler mood than when I’d arrived. The very idea of the runner’s high seemed like a cruel joke.
As a science writer investigating the mind-body connection, however, I was surprised to discover many psychological tricks that can turn the pain into pleasure. Putting these simple tips to the test, I now happily burn between 6,000 and 7,000 calories a week with high-intensity interval training, 5km runs and yoga. What was once a torment is now the highlight of my day.
Choosing the right music for a workout can be as important as picking the right playlist for a party, with ramifications for your enjoyment and your performance.
The benefits are not only found in motivational lyrics – though there’s no doubt that upbeat tracks can infuse you with positive feelings that can help to drown out the sensations of fatigue; when you are lost in the music, you simply forget how hard you are working out.