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Thread: Motivation..How to get it and keep it?

  1. #1

    Motivation..How to get it and keep it?

    Just wondering how everyone keeps up their motivation to do their own exercise program. We seem to keep falling off the track some how.

    Any ideas?

  2. #2
    I'm not sure if I have any good advice for you, but I can definitely relate. I spent a long time trying to keep up with my own program but just kept getting continually frustrated. I ended up realizing that I had to be involved in a community of people with similar goals as well as a positive atmosphere which constantly reminds me that I will reach my goals.

    Maybe you can come up with goals so you have short-term things to reach for. I remember I used to get frustrated because I didn't feel like I was heading in a certain direction. It helps to have some sort of an idea of where you are heading.

    Hopefully some other people may have some better advice.

  3. #3
    Having people to help keep you on track is a great tool, but we all know that we cant always rely on others to keep us motivated.

    So, what i try to remember is how i feel after i slip for days on end. I can almost immediately notice my mood dropping, and my body feeling more tight and weak. My back and knees begin to hurt much more than normal, and i am less likely to want get out of bed. And without a moment all my relationships with friends and my girlfriend suffer.

    Also, remember that it it only takes days even as little as a week to lose much of the physical gains achieved by vigorous exercise.

    Remember that a good exercise does not always need to be in the confines of a gym. In fact, i would rather to go outside with the dogs rather than be with a lot of people in a gym.

    The key is to notice what activities you enjoy that are a good exercise. Then you will be more likely to engage in them. And dont just settle on one thing. A variety of activities is essential in order to not get burn out on any one thing.

    Join up with Disabled Sports USA or other sport oriented organizations that can introduce you to new things if you dont already know how to become involved.

    Another key for me is that i force myself to go do my workout first thing in the morning. That way i have not had enough time for my brain to start working on ways to convince myself that i dont need to go or that i have too many other things to do.

    Exercise for me is my priority one since i know that everything else and everyone suffers when i dont.
    Just like a vehicle or other machinery, your body requires preventative maintenance. Exercise is one way to prevent more damage from occuring down the line.

    Hope my 2 cents can help in some way.

    Paralyzed Veterans of America - Life member

    DSUSA - Volunteer / Participant

  4. #4
    I'm with a trainer these days. That forces me to show up and get my butt kicked. I've learned so much from working within a program. It helps to develop a few different routines and mix them up.

    Celebrate your gains however small they are. Unfortunately, it takes us sci'ers a long time to see results.

    The bottom line is exercise produces results. I know a 5yr c/2 on a vent that can now breathe for 2 hours on her own as a result of training. Another did nothing for 2 years after injury and could only wiggle a few toes. A year of focused training and he is beginning to take steps, unbraced with a walker.

    What kind of things are you doing for exercise? Goals? Remember it was hard enough to get off the couch when we were walking, it takes a lot of ambition to keep at it now. Don't beat yourself up for missing a few days/weeks/whatever.

  5. #5

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by petros5a
    Very good, where was this line of thinking when I was new SCI (dammit!). It was all "you will never walk again" back then.

    Ogali stresses rigorous strengthening exercises like other rehabilitation programs that are emerging for SCI, the program’s foundation is based on a shift in patient consciousness. He catalyzes and reinforces this change, from the defeating “you will never walk again” and other negative, recovery-inhibiting attitudes that are deeply imprinted in consciousness after injury to a positive “Yeah, I will do it.” When this new attitude is embedded with conviction in our consciousness - the captain of our ship - the physical body starts to follow.
    To be fair, they had "Yes, you can" but i found no hope for actual recovery in it, just getting used to and developing existing muscles.

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Great question. Looking for an answer too! Been awfully lazy this last month. Shame on me-

  8. #8
    Senior Member patd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Boise, Idaho, USA
    This is the 64 dollar question! Excercising daily is a decision YOU have to make and live with.

    It's not easy, it's painful, it's slow and often inefficient, it's mentally difficult.

    I do it twice a day and have for 4 and a half years! Today at work I feel new oblique feelings and more torso stability! I feel more everyday! My legs are burning and I'm trying to decide whether or not to take ibuprofen to make it through the rest of the work day.

    My personal feeling is that, incomplete or not, if I am not physically tired at the end of the day, I've missed an opportunity to rehabilitate my SCI'd body. Since I want to make the most out of life, this really doesn't leave me any other option other than what I'm doing.

    Also, I sleep better at night!


  9. #9
    I bought myself an iPod and it changed my life.

    Seriously, I started off just putting it on and rolling to a gym about 3 miles away on my motor chair and working out 3 times a week. About two weeks ago I started switching over to my manual, rolling around town and using our adapted city buses. In two weeks I've already noticed a difference in my strength and my health. I also stopped smoking with the patch at the same time so thats helping I'm sure. I'm at the point where I'm rolling about 3 miles a day in my manual, taking on increasingly bigger challenges. The weather's been gorgeous here so I just roll around, singing along to my 800 favourite songs.

  10. #10
    Damn Christopher! That is great news to hear!
    PatD needs to open the SCI dojo, I'm there. Brings up a good point - A lot of people sit and think that one their nerves might reconnect and they will slowly begin to walk. Or after sitting around doing nothing for years, a cure will come about and restore their bodies. Well, good luck with that. Get that body moving!

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