Tuesday, December 2, 2014

How to stay motivated

"How do you stay motivated?" I get asked this question a lot. And its such a great question. Eleven months of consecutively working out and eating healthy, I've had to think of different ways to keep myself going. So, how did I keep myself motivated everyday to do it. I want to share a few tips that have worked for me and hopefully you can try them and find a way that works for you to stay motivated.

Dress for success.
Sometimes, just the act of getting my workout clothes on is the little boost I need to get going. There are days I can't pry myself away from the couch. But, when I actually get up and go get my workout clothes on, lace up my shoes and put my hair up I'm ready to go. As soon as my workout clothes go on, my mind automatically goes into workout mode and it usually snaps me out of that, "I want to lay around all day" mood and puts me in that, "I can't wait to kill this workout" mood!

Get pumped.
I've found this to be a pretty effective way to get motivated to workout. On my phone, I have a playlist titled, "Get pumped" {Creative, right?}. On days I don't feel like working out I pick a catchy, upbeat song and turn it up, LOUD getting myself amped up for my workout. Also, you can play your favorite track while you're driving to the gym or getting ready to workout. And if you're feeling up for it.. dance! Go crazy. Wake yourself up and get yourself in the mood to get your heart pumping. I'm positive by the end of that one song you pick, you will be ready to knock that workout out.

Schedule it!!
I like this way of staying motivated. I like to think of myself as the "boss", because I am ;) and I like to schedule my workouts with myself. I mean, you wouldn't schedule a meeting with your boss and cancel would you? No, of course you wouldn't. So why cancel on yourself? Don't. Pick a time, block off 30 minutes to an hour of time for YOU and your workout. Treat it like you would any other important event.

Reward yourself.
Who doesn't like a little incentive? Sometimes, something as small as a new pair of running shoes or some new workout clothes is all the motivation you need. I know it is for me. So, set up a reward system you can follow and give yourself points for every workout you do. For example, I use to keep track of my workouts by writing them in my "fitness journal". I would also label 1-21 on 21 different sticky notes and place them along the edge of my wall in my bedroom. For every workout I did, I removed one sticky note and placed it in my workout journal. At the end of the 21 days if all the sticky notes where in my fitness journal, I would reward myself with a new outfit or a "mommy's day out".  You can even add a dollar into a "workout jar" every time you do a workout. Once the money in the jar adds up to a certain amount you can cash in and buy something you really want with the money your earned.

Remember why you started.
For me, this is one of my top ways to self motivate. I always remember that feeling of being depressed, unhealthy, overweight, sad and frustrated with myself and my body. And I remember how I felt when I tried on my very first pair of 22W pants and how it felt when nothing in any store fit me right. It's said so often, but remembering why you started is so motivating and can always fuel my fire. I like to do "before" and "during" pictures that shows me how far i've come to keep my going. Are there days I don't want to workout? Heck yes. I would be lying if said I want to workout everyday. Somedays, I really have to motivate myself to do it. And thats okay. Being able to reconnect with the reason WHY you started when you feel like you can't go on any further will help set you up for success.

Take progress pictures.
Don't base your progress on what the scale tells you. I love progress pictures. Because the camera doesn't lie. Take them in your swim suit so you can really see your progress. I like to take both "side" pictures, a "front" and "behind". If you have someone to take them for you, thats great. If not, set the timer on your camera and prop it up on something in your bathroom. Or, you could always resort to the popular mirror selfie. Whatever works. Now, you don't have to share the pictures with anyone. Just keep them for personal reference. You will be so glad you took those pictures 3-4 months down the road when you can see how far you've come. And those pictures will be constant motivation for you, as my "before" pictures were for me.

Have an accountability partner.
Having an accountability partner is a great way to stay motivated. When picking an accountability partner, pick someone who has similar goals as you or has the same type of lifestyle as you. That way, you can relate to one another more closely and can motivate one another to get it done when excuses start building up. For example, me being a stay at home mom who wants to lose about 15 more pounds and tone up, I wouldn't want to pair up with someone who just wants to build muscle and tone and is a busy business person. We wouldn't be able to relate on much and we couldn't motivate each other fully. Now, i'm not saying you can't be accountability partners with someone who is  working towards opposite goals. But, for the purpose of weight loss/motivation.. it will make it a lot easier if you can relate and talk about your day and maybe strategize on different ways to get in workouts and maybe even share healthy recipes with one another. And if one day you aren't feeling your best and need a little motivational "push" to workout, that's when your accountability partner comes in and helps push you through.

Hopefully one or all of these different methods will come in handy for when you are needing a little motivation to make it through a day. And if not, thats okay. You just need to keep trying and find a way that works for you. Because weight loss is all about trial and error. What works for me might not work for you, and vice versa. But, it's worth a shot! Right? If you decide to try any of these methods to stay motivated, I would love to hear how it worked for you. Best of luck! <3

1 comment:

  1. Great article, Ashley. You have good insight about how one can stay motivated. It is not only about physical fitness but mental too. And when a person fits mentally he becomes more successful in his family life, financially, and everywhere he goes. Thank you for sharing this awesome post.

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