What happens to all of that motivation? And how can you keep it going so that you see results?
Lack of motivation and dedication to a workout plan significantly impacts results. It is impossible to lose weight, tone or build muscle without sticking to a structured workout regime. The question is, how do you maintain motivation in order to see results?
Here are some tips.
1. Have a gym buddy
This one is painfully obvious. Having a gym buddy holds you responsible because it forces you to answer to someone when you want to skip working out because it’s raining or because you had a really bad day. Having a partner can help keep you on track. Spice up the relationship by adding a little work out competition: race each other on the treadmill or make a bet as to who can lose 5 pounds first. Competition is great fuel for motivation!
A small caveat: make sure your gym buddy has similar fitness goals and is equally committed to obtaining those goals for maximum effectiveness. A gym buddy who has more excuses than you for not working out is not going to be too helpful.
2. Set small goals
Set smaller, obtainable goals as you work towards your overall goal. Setting small, training goals helps create a sense of accomplishment that will encourage you to keep going.
3. Get “fitspo”
(Fitspo means fit inspiration)
Keep yourself inspired. Years ago, for fitness inspiration, people cut out pictures of models from magazines and taped them to the refrigerator. Now, Instagram and pinterest are great resources for motivational sayings, before and after photos of other people's weight loss journeys, meal plans, recipes and creative workout routines. Follow several so that they regularly come up on your newsfeed. Use blogluvin to follow health and wellness blogs (follow us too!) The more you engross yourself in the healthy lifestyle, the more inspired you will be.
4. Meal plan
The saying "abs are made in the kitchen," is 100% correct. Many fitness experts argue that what you eat is more important than how far you can run or how many reps you can do. The problem is, it is not easy to eat healthy on the run. There are very few genuinely healthy fast food or vending machine options. So what's the answer? Meal plan and meal prep. Plan your meals out for the week – including breakfast, lunch, dinner and even your between-meal snacks. By planning out your meals for the week, you are in complete control of portion size and caloric intake. It is also helpful to prep your food for the week so that you never are too tired to cook, procrastinate or run out of time. Set some time on Sundays to prepare food for the week, divide it up into containers, and then grab and go.
5. Be narcissistic
Take pictures of yourself to measure your progress. Don’t be afraid to take your clothes off for these photos, you want to be able to see how you are progressing. Worried about someone getting their hands on the photos? There are a number of free apps that will keep your private photos private and require a password to access. My Media is one we like.
6. Reward yourself
The psychological concept of positive reinforcement states that we are more likely to repeat behaviors that lead to positive outcomes. Use this to your benefit at the gym: do your workout, and then reward yourself – not with cake - but with a manicure on the way home or with an extra good protein shake at the gym.
7. Maintain overall health
Work on committing to and maintaining overall health so that the benefits of a healthy lifestyle are that much more apparent. Eat better, sleep better and watch your alcohol intake. Most people start to lose motivation for the gym because they do not see results. A good fitness plan combined with a good overall lifestyle should have you start looking and feeling better pretty quickly - and once you start seeing and feeling differently, intrinsic motivation to maintain it will increase.