Recently a good friend of mine told me “I wish I could figure out what gives me motivation to workout like you do. I can name a few things that help me a lot, but when it comes down to it, I just prioritize other stuff first.” This is not uncommon. You are not alone if you experience this as well. From personal experience to experience from family, friends and clients, I have found that being thin, and often times good health is not much of a motivation to eat healthy and get moving. So then, what DOES motivate us to eat healthy, get moving and keep it a lifestyle? What will keep you from doing what it takes to lose 10 or 20 or more pounds then go right back to your old habits and gain it all back?
Motivation has to come from within. It has to go beyond looks. For one client it has been wanting to be able to keep up with his grandsons. He’s lost over 30 pounds and is still losing. He wants to feel physically as young as he feels mentally. That was his initial motivation. Now it’s gone beyond that to stress relief, having energy at the end of the work day for his wife and to keep up with friends while hiking on the weekends.
The big question is: How do I find what will motivate me? Here’s some ideas on how to find it:
1. Identify As Many Reasons As You Can
Why do I want to lose weight/workout/both? A few questions you can ask yourself are:
Not wanting to need coffee at 2p or sugar to keep your eyes open?
Keep up with the kids?
Have energy to do everything you want to do everyday?
Be a better employee so you can move up in your company?
Tired of hurting all the time and living off meds?
Get rid of ailments like chronic migraines, joint pain, fatigue, etc?
2. Small Steps
Now that you have identified what your priorities are, it’s time to find small things you can start doing now to reach these goals. Some ideas are: Substituting sugary drinks (including 100% juice) with water. Eating out one less time per week. Learning how to cook our favorite meal (we all have to start somewhere right?) Buy a family workout dvd to include the kids? Hire someone to support you and hold you accountable and educate you?
3. Get Started
You’ve done the first two steps, now it’s time to do it! Make a game plan. Rally your support system, even if that means hiring one you know you won’t blow off. Join a nutrition bootcamp or jump start. I will be leading one in Jan, watch for more information soon!
Good luck! I know you can and will do it.
Live Healthy and Whole,