How To Fight Your Negative Internal Monologue During A Workout

Does your inner monologue ever try to make you quit a workout?

Worse yet, does it try to make you never start?

Last week, I was three-quarters of my way through a workout when my inner dialogue hollered at me loud and clear. "Heck no, I'm not doing that!"

It was 5:45 in the morning and I had already completed 45 minutes of an hour workout. 

It had been a particularly exhausting morning of exercise because of the combination of cardio and strength the trainer planned for that day. The straw that broke my motivation's back was a set of bear-crawls and inch worms across the field with jogging and jumping jacks in between. Nothing outlandish, but my brain thought the workout was over. 

I had to convince it otherwise.

How to overcome your negativity during a workout:

1. The Final Countdown- Check your watch. Begin the countdown until the end. "Okay, I can do anything for 15 minutes!"

2. Tune out the Negativity- Nike+ running always had a go to song. Genius! Think of that one song that pumps you up and have it queued up for whenever your workout has a hiccup. My song- "Eye of the Tiger". Don't hate!

3. Monologue to Dialogue- When your mind is throwing all its got at you . Throw back! Start positive self speak. Directly contradict the message your conscious is sending. To be more effective and freak people out- do this out loud.

4. Compete- Whether in a group workout or running by yourself enact your will to win. If in a group do more exercises or do them faster than the others. When running try to do the last part of the run faster than the rest. Bonus- you will be done sooner and end on a great note.

5. The Barrage- Sometimes you just have to bring out the big guns. You may need to throw everything you have at yourself. This is how I motivated myself last week. Count it down, blast the tunes, talk to your self, and find a way to make it a competition.

Hopefully you don't have to you these strategies all the time. I hope you find fitness activities that you enjoy. ...But for the days where it doesn't matter if you like it or not give yourself a little pep talk and blast "Eye of the Tiger" (I give you permission to use my song!)


  1. Jon this post has the perfect timing. I was tired all last week but I managed to do 4 days last week even though I was aiming for 5. This week my inner voice is telling me I am on vacation but I'm thinking about the end goal and tuning the inner voice out. My problem is with starting not finishing my workout but once I start, I always finish strong!

    1. I am so glad this came at the right time for you. You statement about the end goal made me think of something successful people do "Always start with the end in mind." You are on the right track for success keep putting in the work and telling that negative inner voice to shut her mouth. :)