Sometimes, it's just plain tough to get through a workout. There are times when I simply don’t feel like working out, or I get halfway through my run and hit the wall. When I find myself in a workout dilemma, I turn to imagery to get me through.
What Is Exercise Imagery?
There are three main types of exercise imagery:
- Energy: Energy imagery refers to imagining a situation or workout that felt great and provided you with energy. For example, imagine the best run you ever had, the smell of the fresh-cut grass, the sound of your repetitive breath, and the feeling of your feet hitting the pavement in a rhythmic motion. This can provide you with an improved mental state to push through and finish your workout.
- Appearance: Appearance imagery refers to imagining a slim, trim, and healthier you. When you just don’t feel like hitting the corporate fitness program boot-camp class, imagine yourself burning calories, gaining muscle definition, and looking great when you achieve your fitness goal. This can give you that extra push to attend the class or hit the onsite fitness center.
- Technique: Technique imagery refers to imagining yourself with proper form. For example, when performing a squat, imagine yourself sitting back in a chair with your chest up and your weight in your heels. This type of imagery can provide you with a mind-muscle connection to perform an exercise with proper form.
How I Use Exercise Imagery
I use imagery in nearly every workout. It keeps me focused and motivated. I’m currently training for a half marathon. During my runs, I picture myself passing spectators, hearing music, and crossing the finish line. All of these things help me to push myself and maintain my exercise regime.
Try implementing imagery in your workout routine.