29 Feb How to Find (and Sustain) Your Fitness Motivation
We all have days where our will to work out and stay fit is practically non-existent. A fairly healthy breakfast gives way to a so-so lunch, and by dinner you’re fighting three other people over the last of the greasy junk you’ve all stuffed into your faces. It’s not pretty. It’s not even remotely cute. And by the next morning your body is punishing you for your backsliding, demotivated ways as you skip your morning workout because you feel like crap.
But while it’s okay to indulge sometimes, getting derailed often starts with a “sometimes” mindset. Some times start to happen more often than before, and more often than before becomes more often than not.
This is why many people never really achieve their fitness goals—at least in the ways they set out to—and why long-term stats don’t bode well for permanent weight loss.
The difference between cutting yourself some slack and living with reckless, gluttonous abandon is motivation (not to be confused with willpower, although that’s important too).
Staying motivated isn’t hitching yourself to the clean-eating wagon only to continually give up every time you’re bored, every time co-workers ask you to lunch, and every time your saboteur significant other decides it’s a takeout free-for-all this weekend. Nor is it ditching your workouts because you don’t feel like doing them and you’ve convinced yourself you’ve somehow “earned” the time off.
Motivation is finding a reason to act in a certain way—fitness motivation, then, is finding a reason to act and be fit. Very simple.
Notice how there’s no mention of excuses or long work days in that definition. Or medical conditions. Or children. Just reasons. Reasons to get up and do something. Reasons to find purpose in healthy change. Incentives for becoming a better version of yourself.
And since we’re all individuals with different incentives, fitness motivation should be personal to you.
So, figure out what motivated you in the first place, and build on that.
If hot and sexy is your thing, find inspiring, hot and sexy people who’ve achieved what you’re after and hang out with them, work out with them, and hit them up for fitness tips and advice.
Not only will you get to physically see what you’re working toward in these people, but you’ll make some new friends who share your goals and healthy habits.
Or, if better health is what you’re after, keep a short list of every health problem that prompted you to change your habits in your pocket. Pull it out and look at it when you want to eat garbage, and when you’re considering skipping a workout for the second or third time in a row. It’ll soon become second nature to remember these things and stay on track.
And if you’re having an even harder time staying motivated, think of the foods that tempt you in terms of their negative effects. Therefore, if you’re diabetic, plates of pasta are not delicious; they’re weight gain, high blood sugar, food comas, low energy, and destructive cravings. And if you have IBS for example, pizza is not pizza; it’s bloating, gas, stomach cramps, and possible diarrhea or days of constipation.
The key is finding what matters most to you; all other things are simply many means to an end.
So no matter who you are, your goals or your plans, here’s one last fitness motivation takeaway:
Your desire for your goal must exceed your desire to do nothing about it—so make it happen!
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