I get asked almost everyday, “How do you stay so motivated?”
It always makes me laugh because I don’t find myself a very motivating person. I lay in bed until almost noon, I half-ass my work, and I complain about having to do most forms of physical activity because laying on the couch and scrolling social media is always a better idea to me. Yet, I get asked that question everyday. It took me awhile to figure out how to respond when someone would ask because I want to make sure I’m telling them something that not only I would want to hear but is also realistic and honest.
After much deliberation I decided what keeps me motivated and I hope this list helps someone else find their own personal motivation too.
- Do something you enjoy and do it a lot. Today I can honestly say that I love working out, somedays it’s the highlight of my day. Sure I complain when I’m getting ready or when I’m walking in the door but as soon as I’m in my zone I’m all there. The gym is my happy place, and maybe it’s yours too but it might not be. Some love Crossfit, yoga, running, workout classes, swimming. Whatever form of exercise you love, do it! Don’t make it something you don’t enjoy because you will dread it and continue to put it off. Make it something you look forward to everyday and want to progress in.
- Learn and do research about exercise and nutrition. Going to school first for exercise science then switching into nutrition gives me a good foundation for this topic. However, not everyone will walk in my same shoes. Research and learn correct form, new workouts, proper nutrition, etc. DO NOT BE AFRAID TO ASK QUESTIONS. Trainers and front desk workers at the gym love to help people, so don’t be afraid to ask for assistance or advice. So many great influencers, bloggers, and websites offer workout ideas and tips that you can find for free online as well.
- Surround yourself with support. If those around you do not support your journey, it will definitely be more difficult to achieve your goals. You may feel discouraged or be faced with difficult obstacles you will have to overcome. If your family or friends do not support your goals or put you down for it, try to talk to them about why you want to change your habits. Ask them to join you or make a healthy meal with them. If they see how hard your trying or also enjoy it they may change their habits as well. I’m thankful those around me are so supportive and also have the same habits as me, but not everyone is so lucky.
- Document your progress. As many know, I have a fitness Instagram account that I started less than a year ago. I originally made it to give my friends workout ideas if they couldn’t workout with me as well as to follow influential accounts without flooding my personal timeline. I can honestly say it has motivated me 10000% more having this account. I want to post a workout or a motivational quote or the changes in my body. I want to share the healthy meals I made or make new connections. I also use MyFitnessPal to keep track of my eating. I used to be dangerously religious with this app, but over the years I’ve learned more about what I can and cannot do and have recently gone back to using it. It helps to keep track of my macronutrient and caloric intake. I don’t use it everyday and usually forget to track anything but even tracking 1 meal helps to keep me in line. I also believe in taking progress pictures along the way. Take them in the beginning, when you’re feeling good, when you’re feeling bad, when you’ve reached a goal. Always take them. Sometimes we believe we’ve barely progressed but in reality we just aren’t comparing it where we’ve been. Try taking them weekly or monthly and I always suggest taking them in the beginning.
There are definitely a million and one ways to be motivated. The truth is, what keeps me motivated may not keep you motivated. Find what sparks that fire and get out there and do the damn thing. Working out does not have to be this negative painful experience people make it out to be, you just have to find what works best for you.