How do I motivate myself

We all need a little self motivation from time to time. And sticking to a diet and exercise program is one of those occasions when your self motivation is really challenged.

You are not alone in this. Even the most fittest and keenest person in the gym (even those who always take the front row in the aerobic classes) have off days, when they just can’t get into their exercise routine. This lack of motivation can sometimes last weeks, or even months.

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Where does our motivation go? We might have been on holiday and just can’t shake that holiday feeling. Or work has been hectic so there has been no time to exercise. It might just be that we are bored with the same daily routine. Whatever the reason, all we know is that we cannot find the motivation to just get on and do it!
People find different ways to motivate themselves, but one of the best ways is to set a realistic goal and a time that you wish to achieve this by.

The goal can be different things: you might want to reach a target weight for a special occasion; or you might simply want to lead a healthy lifestyle and you know that exercising three times a week will help achieve that.

Another good way is to find a diet partner or an exercising partner. It is amazing how things suddenly become easier when  someone else is in the same boat. You motivate each other and neither one of you wants to let the other one down.

Also see: What part of your brain motivates you to exercise?

A goal can be anything that challenges you, because once you have achieved your goal, you will feel the sense of satisfaction that gives you the buzzing motivation to continue. A good way to achieve goals is to keep a diary and plan ahead.
A food diary will help you achieve your weight loss goals. You can plan your meals and make sure you have the right foods in your fridge. Fill your food diary – and your fridge – with healthy foods that that you actually enjoy eating. This way, you look forward to the next thing on your list.

And vary your exercise routine. Make sure to choose physical activities that you enjoy and that motivate you. Have different activities for the different days in your plan. It doesn’t always need to be a full-on work out, if walking is your thing, just walk to the nearest park listening to your favorite music or just walk down to a store that is at least 30min away. Buy something you like and walk back. If you plan this ahead in your diary, you are more likely to stick with it.

Another good tip is to write a blog. It doesn’t have to be long articles, just a few words such as ‘I am on track’ and a few lines of what you did right that day can be motivating enough. Blogging about your exercise provides you with a record of what you have done and an update on what you are going to do. And once it is published, there is no escaping it – your readers will have seen that you were planning that five kilometre run, so there is no excuse not to get out and do it!

 

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