I know it can be challenging, finding the motivation to workout and eat healthy can be tough. Everyone I know leads a crazy busy life full of obstacles, distractions and opposing priorities. But the reality is, if you truly want results, you must stay motivated and on track. The next time you find yourself in a fitness slump, try some of these motivational tips!
Set more realistic goals – I see it all the time. People focus on a lofty overall goal and almost immediately become overwhelmed and unmotivated. To help keep your eye on the prize, shoot for smaller, more attainable goals. For example, don’t focus on losing 60 pounds or 100 pounds. Instead, focus on weekly or monthly goals like 1 pound a week or 5-7 pounds a month. If you’re new to working out, don’t focus on a 90 minute, high-intensity workout. Instead, focus on 30 minutes, or walking 10,000 steps a day or working one body part a day. By focusing on what’s easily attainable, you’ll be less likely to lose your motivation and give up.
Track it – Whether you track manually, via an app or just do progress pics, keeping track of your success is important. Sure, the scale may say you’ve only dropped four pounds this month, but if you’re keeping track of inches you may realize that you’ve shrunk an entire dress or pant size. In my opinion, keeping track of your weight, inches and taking progress pics is the best way to truly know (and see) how well you’re doing and stay motivated to keep at it. I also recommend tracking your workouts, you will love seeing how much stronger you are over time and be motivated to continue.
Do it for you – Trust me on this, if you are trying to lose weight for a spouse or a parent or a friend – or anyone other than yourself, you will lose motivation. People who start a weight loss journey for someone else are typically doing it only out of shame, and shame is never a good source of motivation. If you’re not ready to make changes for yourself, you’ll never be able to stick to a fitness program. Find your reason for wanting to be healthy. Whether that’s a special event, an outfit or just to get a better report the next time you see your doctor for a checkup, let that reason be the thing that get’s you to the gym – not someone else telling you that you need to.
Drop the guilt – Yes, you will mess up. You will be too tired for a workout, or too sick or find yourself traveling or tending to another priority. You will have days when you just cannot say no to wine, chocolate or pizza. The best way to deal with this is to just get over it. Did you eat something bad today? So what! You’re human, it’s okay. Just make sure the next thing you eat is healthy. Did you pass up a workout for margaritas with friends? Good for you! Just remember to make this an occasional slip up and not an everyday occurrence. Allow yourself to be human, enjoy your indulgences and then get back on track. Yes, you need to stay the course, but sometimes to stay motivated, you also need to just go and enjoy life. Balance is a huge component of a success journey.
Make it fun – For some people, they enjoy a strict, planned out program to follow for their workout. For others, if it’s not fun they will never do it again. If that’s your style, then find something fun to do and do it! Love to dance? Try Zumba instead of doing cardio on a treadmill. Hate cardio but love weights? Do higher reps for more intensity and calorie burn and skip the cardio. Need a mind/body balance? Throw in some yoga a few days a week. Fitness is supposed to make your life better, not make you miserable, so find something you really love to do and start there.
Make it easy – If you know that a 30-minute drive to and from the gym isn’t doable for you, invest in a small home gym. If you know that packing up your lunch every night will never happen, batch cook on the weekend and have every meal ready to grab and go. Even timing your workouts around when it’s most convenient for you can make a huge difference in how motivated you are to get them done.
Remember, there’s always a way to get your workout mojo flowing again, sometimes it just takes a little tweaking.
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