So, you just started a new fitness routine and you’re hyped. Something happened in your life that has finally made you say, “This is it. I’m sick of this. Something needs to change.” Congratulations for reaching this point. At this point, you are confident, committed, and ready to become more fit and healthier than ever. You’re gonna show the world!!! You decide to start hitting the gym and eating healthier…”on Monday.” Monday comes and so you begin.
It’s now three weeks later. You’re losing or have lost momentum and now start to question why you even want to be fit or healthier. You start to convince yourself that people need to love you for who you are and that you really don’t need to work out any more. Could you really keep it up anyway? This is how we get in our heads and talk ourselves out of the things we know are best for us and what we need to do.
When these challenges come, we have to find ways to keep ourselves motivated for success. Here are 5 ways to stay motivated when you’re just starting out your fitness lifestyle change. These 5 things can help you stick to the plan when your body and your mind try to talk you out of it. Let’s begin…
1. Set Goals
You need to set a goal for yourself. Goals are important in life. That is, they are important if you want to succeed. You can’t hit a target that doesn’t even exist, so you’ve got to set a goal. Perhaps you want to lose 20 pounds? Perhaps you want to fit in those blue jeans from college? Perhaps you just want to be able to walk up a flight of steps without getting winded. Whatever your goal is, write it down and put a plan in place to reach it. Keep the goals simple and achievable. Record your progress and be proud of what you’re doing. Once you hit the goal, create a new one and keep going.
2. Have Fun
Make sure to include some fun in your new fitness plan. Perhaps you join a sports team and get exercise in that way. Maybe you’re more of a martial arts kind of person and would enjoy that workout. Maybe even join a workout class with a group of people where they play music and you’re constantly moving. Find what you enjoy and try to do that. It will make the workouts more fun and increase the likelihood that you will keep at it.
3. Team Up With A Friend
No need to work out alone. Find a friend or group with similar goals and engage them. Work out together. If you can’t work out together, hold each other accountable by requiring each other to show proof that you worked out that day. Many fitness apps allows you to share your progress with others, so look into those and share your successes. When you feel like you’re in it together, with a friend, you’ll be more committed and more likely to keep at it.
4. Make It A Part Of Your Day
You have to schedule time for your workouts. You have to plan them in your day. Personally, I have set aside 90 minutes at 12:30 on Mon/Wed/Fri to workout with weights, and 7pm on Tuesday and Thursdays to run a 5K. This is my plan. The workout times are on my calendar. I make them a part of my day and I stick to it just like I’m working my job. It’s something I have to do so it’s a part of my day.
5. Make A Commitment To Yourself, But Be Flexible
Put a plan together and stick to your plan. Commit to yourself that you will see this through. This is what I did and how the 5and2Guy came about. I committed that I would eat healthy and exercise Monday – Friday (5 days) and then take Saturday and Sunday (2 days) off. I stick to this as much as possible. There are exceptions, so I have to be flexible. For example, if I’m sick, I can’t work out. This past Thursday was my wife’s birthday, and I committed to spending the day with her. So, I didn’t work out. Commit to a workout schedule but be flexible when necessary. Your workout days aren’t written in stone.
When we finally make the decision to make a change in our fitness and health, that adrenaline and drive can be very powerful. One thing we tend not to realize is that the adrenaline and drive will fade. And they often fade before we can set positive health habits. In order to stay motivated, use these 5 things that can help you stick to your routine when your body and your mind is telling you to quit. Positive habits and changes are formed when we do what we need to do when we don’t feel like doing it. Every time you work out, when you don’t feel like it, makes you stronger. Use these 5 things to help you stay committed and on track.