We’ve recently been talking about New Year Resolutions. In other articles we’ve already covered how to write them, long-term vs. short-term goals and the role of exercise in a resolution.
The topic in this article is motivation!
Now that we’ve all created a resolution that is specific, measureable, achievable, realistic and time-bound the question is how do we stay motivated to achieve that resolution?
As it turns out, there’s no “magic motivation formula” out there. If such a potion existed, someone would be selling it and two-thirds of the United States wouldn’t be overweight!
Even though there’s no such thing as a “secret motivational magic-wand”, there are some things we can do to help motivate ourselves to exercise more and eat less. The thing to remember is that not every idea will work for every person. We are all individuals with individual personalities and individual needs! So, what motivates you might not motivate me.
That being said, let’s look at some motivation tools that have worked for others. Perhaps we’ll find some that will work for us.
1) Inform your friends, partners and others about your goals and get their support. For some of us, there’s nothing more motivating than a spouse or friend that supports us.
2) Buddy up with a co-worker to exercise on your lunch hour. Hold each other accountable!
3) Write down your New Year Resolution and post it on your ‘fridge.
4) Write down your measurements and/or weight and post it on the ‘fridge.
5) Hang a picture of yourself on the ‘fridge.
6) Listen to motivational tapes – for example, Tony Robbins is excellent.
7) Get a fitness education by reading fitness magazines and books. Knowledge is power!
8) Hang up pictures of beautiful, thin models as an example of what you’re trying to achieve.
9) Get some “skinny clothes” out of the closet and hang them up where you’ll see them every day.
10) Buy a bikini and hang it up where you’ll see it every day.
11) Keep a food journal, writing down every single thing you eat all day.
12) Keep an exercise journal and record in it your exercise sessions.
13) Talk with your doctor about the benefits of exercise.
14) Research and write down as many benefits of exercise as you can – hint: there are more than forty! This can be a very motivating process!
15) Draw a picture of yourself at your goal weight. Post it where you’ll see it daily.
16) Promise yourself that you’ll treat yourself to a massage, hair color, or whatever when you lose the first 10 pounds.
17) Get your blood pressure and cholesterol checked by your doctor. Post the results on the ‘fridge and promise to have them re-checked in six months.
18) Join a weight control club like TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) or Weight Watchers.
19) Find a friend or co-worker that is also trying to exercise more often. Bet him or her $25 that you can exercise more days in a row than they can! Once you’ve won that bet, do it again by betting double-or-nothing!
20) Take the “fat clothes” that you’re now too small for and get rid of them! Give them to charity, burn them, whatever – just get them out of the house! You won’t need them again!
There are just a few ideas that we can use to help motivate ourselves. No single motivational technique will work for everyone, but each technique will work for someone!
Good luck and stay motivated!
Tracie Johanson is the founder of Pick Up The Pace, a 30-minute exercise studio for women focusing on fitness, health and nutrition for maximum weight loss. Please visit http://www.letspickupthepace.com/ for more information.