How to Stay Motivated

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I don’t care who you are, every single one of us, at one time or another, will face burnout.  It happens to even the most dedicated fitness-minded people.

Today I’m going to share a few tips for overcoming that feeling of wanting to throw in the towel.  There are several reasons we begin to feel this way.  Sometimes it’s because we are overzealous in the beginning.  We throw everything we’ve got into our new fitness lifestyle, leave no room for error, make no mistakes, only to find after 2 weeks that we’ve been burning the candle at both ends and hit the wall hard.  Other times it can be things like lack of sufficient sleep.  That’s a big one and probably the hardest to master.  When we don’t get enough rest, our bodies and minds are fatigued.  You can feel lethargic, zapped of energy, and the will to pursue healthy habits is all but nonexistent.

So, here we go with a few ways to fight these feelings off.

  •  CHANGE YOUR PERSPECTIVE
    If you’re feeling like exercise and fueling your body nutritiously is more of a chore than a privilege, then take a time out and think about WHY you want to do those things.  For me personally, it is all about how I feel.  When I exercise and eat right, I feel about a thousand times better than when I don’t.  Both physically and mentally.  And it’s not by accident, when you exercise, your body releases endorphins that literally relieve stress and enhance feelings of pleasure.  When I really start to feel overwhelmed with trying to be diligent with eating and exercise, I remind myself that the time that I spend taking care of myself is time well spent.  It’s my “me time” and it’s literally the best thing I can do not only for myself, but also for the family that I take care of every day.

 

  • BUY SOME NEW WORKOUT GEAR
    Ok, I know this sounds somewhat silly.  It shouldn’t matter what you’re wearing, but when I get some new workout clothes, I am definitely more motivated to put them to use!  My family bought me some cute yoga pants and a tank top for my birthday this year and I couldn’t wait to put them on and go work out!  Sometimes you just need a little change of scenery.  I tend to wear old tees with the sleeves cut out of them as my usual workout attire, but I do love a cute new piece now and then.  Try it, it works!

 

  • FOCUS ON THE MUSCLE GROUPS YOU ARE WORKING WHEN YOU’RE IN THE MOMENT
    This is a big one!  I have a bad habit of letting my mind wander when I’m working out.  I workout in my garage, so there is literally nothing interesting going on for me to look at.  I tend to think about all the things I need to get done when I’m finished with my workout.  This leads to me being distracted and not giving my best effort.  If I really focus on the particular muscle I’m working, for example, my trapezius muscles when doing pullups or biceps when doing curls, I am much more likely to give 100%.  It seems little, but it’s pretty significant when it comes to getting the most out of your workout.

 

  • STOP FEELING GUILTY
    We all have moments of weakness.  We all skip workouts.  We all fall off the healthy food wagon now and then.  That’s a FACT.  Everyone does it.  So, if everyone does it, why do we feel so guilty when we do?  And why do we beat ourselves up over it?  Most people who begin a fitness program quit because they set their expectations too high and feel like a failure when they have a moment of weakness.  But what if you stopped the negative self-talk?  What if you go into this knowing that there will be those weak moments and before you even start you just tell yourself it’s ok and normal for that to happen.  What if I told you it was possible to make a huge pig of yourself one day and actually go ahead and workout and eat well the next?  Because you can!  It’s what you consistently do that matters.  A mistake here and there doesn’t mean the end of your fitness!  In fact, I don’t even like to call them mistakes. That’s part of the problem right there.  You can’t set unrealistic expectations and expect to be successful.  I hate restrictive diets for that very reason.  You can’t eat this, this or this and if you do, well you suck and are a failure at life.  NO.  It doesn’t have to be all or nothing.  I understand that if you are currently addicted to junk food or soda, it is going to be harder for you to practice moderation and favor healthy foods.  It’s not impossible, though.  Will it suck in the beginning?  Yes.  As with any lifestyle change, it’s hard in the beginning.  But if you commit to 2 weeks, it becomes considerably easier, especially when you see the results of your discipline.  But please, please, please!!  Don’t quit if you veer off course.  Keep going!  You won’t be sorry!

 

  • VISUALIZE YOURSELF AT YOUR GOAL
    This one can be extremely helpful and motivating.  You have a mental picture in your head of what you’re trying to accomplish.  Visualize it often.  I have a board on Pinterest and its sole purpose is to motivate me when I feel less than motivated.  I pin all kinds of things to it; quotes, fitness routines, people with physiques that I admire, bible verses, etc.  In fact, the picture in this post came from my fitness inspiration board on Pinterest.  It really does help keep me focused on my goal.

I hope these tips are helpful to you.  Remember that anything you do is better than doing nothing.  Slipping up is not an excuse to quit!  Consistency is what matters!  You can do this!

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