How to get motivated at the gym

This afternoon, I was dragging a little and I wanted to have an awesome workout tonight. I want all my workouts to be awesome but I especially need every workout full on while we’re doing Anabolic Again Cluster Cycles.


Today, I went ahead and had an extra espresso to help motivate me. I’m glad I did. That and the new tunes I downloaded had me dancing around the gym and fully focused. Caffeine can be a great pre-workout aide if you don’t have it all the time.

Cool workout wear

I always find I’m stronger and more focused if I’m well dressed. I love these Under Armor Compression shorts. I know they make me lift better somehow.

Naomi RULES Squats!

Naomi and Al cranking out squats in Cluster Cycles workout

Comfortable iPod

I have an armband for my iPod (pictured) but it has a few disadvantages. If I’m working upper body, I find the strap tends to get restrictive as I get a pump. Also, it’s far too easy to catch the wire on a dumbbell. So I made myself a waist strap as well and I can run the wire under my top. It’s usually better but it too can get in the way or get tangled up at times. Ah well, one of these days, I’ll rig the perfect setup.

Proper Workout – Don’t Leave anything to chance!

You’re wasting your time if you just show up at the gym without a plan or hop on the cardio machines. Even attending a class isn’t necessarily going to get you the body of your dreams. I only follow extraordinarily well-designed programs which have specific goals. Currently, Al and I are working towards our ideal shoulder, waist and hip ratios utilizing Adonis and Venus respectively, and we only do the programs suited to the job. You can see all the programs I endorse here.

Water bottle

I use a stainless steel water bottle filled with filtered water from home. It’s got a shoulder strap so it goes everywhere I go.

Get your Head in the Game!

Create rituals. When I’m going for heavy lifts, I have a series of things I do. I double check the weights and make sure the plates are close and I’m using collars on certain lifts. I have a sip of water before any super heavy lift; I just feel like it gives me extra strength. I know that sounds like never washing your socks in game season but hey, it’s working for me. I usually flip to a new tune. I get positioned and take a few deep, belly breaths while I imagine myself lifting. I reset at the top of each rep and take a breath, then brace my abs. When my set is done, I breathe deeply and usually take my rests standing up so I can fully fill my lungs.

Trick yourself. If you have a workout partner, they can trick you by loading more weight onto the bar than you realize. Or just trick yourself. The other day, I was feeling very daunted by the lift I was about to attempt so I just kept repeating a number in my head that was 20 pounds lighter than the actual weight. It worked!  Sometimes, we make math errors and then realize we actually managed more weight than we thought! So much of lifting is belief and confidence. That said, don’t do anything dangerous!


Don’t underestimate the strengthening power of music! Most weight lifters seem to gravitate to heavy metal but I abhor it – it’s my personal kryptonite! Until today, I was limping along with a tired playlist from last century that no longer me any kind of a boost. So today, I bit the bullet and got myself into this century. My new playlist is below. I welcome suggestions based upon the list I’ve included. I am loving most of it but a few are gonna have to go.

Be Sexy and Healthy!

Remember, once you remove fat and reveal your underlying shape, you have got to be doing resistance exercise to give your body a shape you’ll be proud to reveal! Simply “losing weight” will not make you sexy and healthy.

Here is the playlist I just put together. Like this kind of music? Please feel free to suggest similar tunes!

The Time (Dirty Bit) The Black Eyed Peas
Fashion Beats The Black Eyed Peas
Just Can’t Get Enough The Black Eyed Peas
I Gotta Feeling Black Eyed Peas
Showdown Black Eyed Peas
Party All The Time Black Eyed Peas
Boom Boom Pow The Black Eyed Peas
Ring-A-Ling Black Eyed Peas
Electric City Black Eyed Peas
Boom Boom Pow (Riot the DJ remix) Black Eyed Peas
I Wanna Go Britney Spears
Till The World Ends – Britney Spears (Art Beatz Dubstep Drop Remix) Britney Spears
Just Like Heaven The Cure
The Cure – Friday I’m In Love The Cure
Without You David Guetta & Usher
I Said (Ft. Chris Lake) (Michael Woods Remix) Deadmau5
Ghosts N Stuff (Original Mix) Deadmau5
Strobe (8 bit Chipsound, dEnVIL Remix) Deadmau5
I Said Deadmau5 & Chris Lake
Jumpin Jumpin Destinys Child
The Club Cant Handle me (Electrolightz Remix NB verse) Flo Rida
Low Flo Rida (Feat. T-Pain)
Right Round Flo Rida feat. Ke$ha
Good feeling FloRida
Everlong (DiscoTech Remix) Foo Fighters
Hey Soul Sister (NE!TAN Remix Edit) Jason Born
Katy Parry – Firework Katy Parry – Firework
E.T. (Featuring Kanye West) Katy Perry
Take It Off Kesha
Marry The Night Lady GaGa
Eh, Eh (Nothing Else I Can Say) [Pet Shop Boys Remix] Lady GaGa
Just Dance (Hoshina Anniversary “Galaxy” Demo) Lady GaGa
Lady Gaga – Do Me Right (NEW SONG 2010) new songs 2010 Lady GaGa
Lady Gaga – Bad Romance – Skrillex Club Lady Gaga
Dance In The Dark Lady Gaga
Poker Face (JDB Edit) Lady Gaga
You and I Lady Gaga
I’m Sexy and I Know It (Remix) LMFAO
Party Rock Anthem LMFAO
Moves Like Jagger (Remix) Feat. Mac Miller & Christina Aguilera Maroon 5
Lisztomania (Yuksek Remix) Phoenix
Raise Your Glass Pink
Just like a pill Pink
Only Girl (In The World) Rihanna
We Found Love (Feat. Calvin Harris) Rihanna
Breathe Me (Butch Clancy Remix) Sia
16 – Smashing Pumpkins – 1979 Smashing Pumpkins
What You Know (Redlight Remix Two Door Cinema Club
Something Good Can Work (Mitzi Remix) Two Door Cinema Club
More (Redone Jimmy Joker Remix) Usher
Yeah! (Antifreeze Piano And Flute Remix) Usher
DJ Got Us Fallin’ In Love Usher featuring Pitbull


5 comments to How to get motivated at the gym

  • Thanks, Laura!!!! When I get a few hours to check them all out, I’ll be sure to let you know what makes the cut. At a glance, I am thinking most will! I appreciate you taking the time to help a girl out!

  • Dora

    I just got an iphone arm band and am not crazy about it. As you said, feels tight as you work out your arms. I”ve been using a tiny ipod that clips to my shirt sleeve. Doesn’t hold as much and I don’t have my phone,but find it more comfortable.

    • Oh yeah, we have one that clips on and it’s the best way to go but it’s that silly shuffle that requires special headphones to operate. For just the workout playlist, it’s actually idea. I wonder where those headphones are. I don’t like the in the ear one at all – I used the others and at home the big DJ ones – I would at the gym but that seems to be taking it too far! Apple really messed up on that iPod design. But you’ve got me thinking – perhaps I could rig a way to clip my iPod on. I can’t stand using the iPhone for tunes. My iPod is and older generation but still kicking!

  • Great tips! good tunes! i like everything by black eyed peas. Need me some cure!! I always forget about them.