You created a goal and now you’re pumped about taking the steps to achieve it. Then a week goes by and your motivation slowly simmers or life gets stressful and you’re suddenly too tired to work out and cook your planned meals. Now three weeks have gone by and you haven’t made progress and you may start all over again. Let me guess, you’re not motivated enough? Don’t let the words “motivated” and “will power” make you believe you aren’t capable of accomplishing this goal. You are very capable so let’s go over some ways to keep you on track.
What is your real Goal?
There are two types of motivation – intrinsic and extrinsic. Extrinsic motivation is influenced by outside factors; are you losing weight because the doctor told you to or because society says it’s not ok to have cellulite? Extrinsic motivation is influencing actions to avoid punishment or to receive external rewards. This motivation will only last so long before it dies and you’re back to square one. On the other hand, intrinsic motivation influences behavior because it is personally rewarding. Does it feel good after your work out? Have you notice your confidence grow as your go through the process of your fitness transformation? If you are motivated by something that feels good you’ll have more of a drive to want to keep doing it.
So what is your goal and what influences your behavior? If your initial goal is based on an outside influence like winning your first bikini competition that’s ok, but when times get hard that shiny new trophy won’t seem so appealing. Dig deep beyond your surface goal and find your real goal; find your why.
Track your progress
Changing your body and life style is probably one of the hardest goals because no matter how hard you feel you are working you cannot see the changes in your own body as quickly as you’d like. Every day I wake up and flash my stomach in my mirror searching for a new crease as to hint incoming abs. No matter how hard I squint I look the same. Personally, I believe the scale was made by the devil so I hate to weigh in. Do I still do it? Of course, and then I regret that decision immediately after as I am guilty of defining the beauty of my body based off a number. I could go on and on about how much I hate measuring tools but we can save for that for another day. The point I am trying make is that even though I despise weighing in I discovered a more effective way to track my progress and that is through pictures. And no, I don’t mean Instagram #selfies. When I am on a mission to change my physique I go through weekly progress pictures. They may not seem like much in the moment but when I look back and compare I can easily spot my changes without having to squint. Moral of the story – find something to keep you on track whether it be through pictures, exercise logs or calendars and if you insist, some way to measure your body composition. Find out what works for you and use it!
Nothing is harder than trying to make a life style change around people who are content with sitting on the couch eating an entire box of donuts right in front of your face. You have to keep convincing yourself that you don’t want that glazed donut as sweat drips down your eyebrow and your hands are gripping the seat cushions for dear life. You don’t need to get rid of these friends, but you can look for other people who have similar interest. Better yet, share your goals with your friends and family and I bet you would be surprise how many people will jump on board with you. Having support in a challenging change will help you through the tough times and keep you accountable.
Ask for help
I get that we all want to have independence in every aspect of our life and we want to do this ourselves, but if you keep trying and nothing changes maybe it is time for a come-to-Jesus moment and get real with yourself; you need help! Suck it up, get it together and hire a Personal Trainer. Is it expensive? Well, that depends on who you ask but what is more expensive? Investing on a few months of training to grow and change as a person or the medical bills you are going to have to pay for years from now because you refused to invest in your health and personal fitness goals? Be proactive with your health not reactive. Learn from your trainer, ask questions, nag them with little shit because that is what they are there for – they dedicate their life to this. It’s their job for crying out loud! Stop trying to be a professional in a field you know nothing about and let the Professionals help you. What’s the definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results…? Yea, get yo shit togetha! Ask for help and use it as a learning opportunity to take with you for the r e s t o f y o u r l i f e .
No matter what your goal is and how you chose to stay on track remember that you are human. There is no fool-proof way to get to your finish line and what you are striving for consists of behavioral changes. Your body won’t change over night and your love for broccoli over potato chips won’t just switch in a blink of an eye. You are not perfect; give yourself a break when you mess up and give yourself kudos on the small changes. Those small changes add up to the big picture.
Set your goal, know your why, find support and don’t be afraid to ask for help!