As a Certified Personal Trainer the number one struggle I hear among clients and members of the fitness community is lack of motivation. How do we address this issue? We all struggle from time to time. Even as a personal trainer, I still struggle. Some of us have children who require all our attention, while others work long hours at the office. No matter what the reason is having a plan will help you stay motivated. Here are some tips to help you stay motivated on your fitness journey.
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Set a Goal
This is the first thing I tell those who are struggling to stay motivated. Set a goal and write it down. This advice actually came from an amazing personal trainer that I worked with after the birth of my first son. The best advice! Write your goal in your planner if you have one, on the lock screen of your cell phone or make a goal/motivation poster for your home office or bedroom. You can even get a magnetic goal board/planner for you refrigerator like this one found on amazon. Just make sure when you start thinking about goals, set one that is attainable. Set a goal that isn’t so far out of reach that you give up. Make sure your goal is well defined, realistic but challenging, and give yourself a deadline. Some examples of fitness goals:
- Loose 5 lbs by Wedding date in August.
- Go to the gym 5 days a week this month.
- Include healthier meals in my diet this week.
Do make sure your goal is written in a positive way. Avoid goals such as “I won’t eat any cookies this week”. Instead try to say ” I will enjoy healthier snack options this week”. The way you say your goal and talk to yourself matters! Always try to keep it positive.
Make a Plan
Make a plan to help you stay motivated and reach your goals. How will you reach your goals? What are some of the steps you must take you reach your goals? What are some limiting factors that will hold you back? How can you address those set backs? All things to think about when you are setting goals and making a plan. Your plan does not have to be complicated. Keep it as simple or complex as you would like. Make sure your plan lines up with your goals. Sometimes buying a planner is a fun way to help us reach our goals. A fun planner may just be what you need to make it happen! This health and fitness planner with daily gratitude is great for making a plan and following it.
Nutrition is a key ingredient in any fitness journey. Make meal planning a priority if you are busy. Take two days a week and try to prep meals for your breakfast, lunch, or dinner. If you work long hours or are just busy, these prepped meals will help you stay on track. Meal prepping keeps you out of the snack drawer, out of the fridge, and out of the drive through line. You may also realize that you enjoy a home cooked meal much more. When doing a meal prep session always be sure to start with a clean kitchen to cut down on prep time. Also make sure you have all the meal prep containers you need, its no fun doing a meal prep session only to find you have no containers! I personally love these hydra prep fitness containers, they have a tight lock and seal so even soup wont leak. I often throw my meal prep right into my purse or diaper bag. Also they have some inspirational quotes on them, win!
Leave yourself Inspirational Notes
This one is fun! Sometimes we all just need constant reminders as to why we are doing something. Leave yourself inspirational notes that hep you stay on track and reach your goal. You can leave these notes in your car, on your bathroom mirror, on the coffee maker, in your planner, and on your phone. If you want to take any extra step you can even ask friends to text you words of encouragement. We all love to help a friend in need.
Find a Buddy
Yes find a friend! Ideally a friend who has similar goals as you but any friend who wants to get together, work out and get fit will do! You might meet someone at the gym who is looking for a buddy or maybe your neighbor! Get together and make a plan of attack. Schedule weekly workouts together or even meal prep sessions. This is a sure fire way to make it fun. You can even try new workout locations, go shopping for new gym attire together, go shopping for weekly meal prep and more importantly be there to support each other. Sometimes just having that extra support is the push we need to stay motivated.
Prepare Meals Together
Maybe you are like me and have a growing family. Make meal time fun, include the kids, have them help you prepare healthy meals. Encourage the kids to really get involved in meal preparation, just remember it is going to get messy! So have some patience with the little ones as they learn how to help in the kitchen. Maybe the kids can help meal plan as well. Give them a few healthy options to pick from so they feel involved. The kids may be more inclined to eat the healthy meals if they help prepare them. So in my book this one is a win, win. You should not have to prepare a separate meal for yourself, prepare a healthy meal the entire family will love! Try new recipes like my healthy Cashew Chicken. Make sure to keep it fun, healthy, and delicious!
Do what you LOVE
Yes, do what you really love. Find a workout that you love, a location that is inspiring to your soul and make it all work. Maybe you found out you do not enjoy lifting weights but love spin class. Then go to spin and skip the weights. Doing activities that you actually enjoy will keep it fun and you motivated. If you make yourself do activities or exercises that you do not really enjoy, most the time it ends up feeling like another chore. It is hard to reach a goal when it feels like a chore. So put time into finding what you really enjoy doing, and do it!