Motivation ~ the general desire or willingness of someone to do something.
Motivation. As I interact with people and talk with them about where they are or want to be on their health and fitness journey motivation often seems to be a missing ingredient, so they believe.
Oh, they want to do it. But there is a lack or desire to really get the ball going.
Think of it like the enthusiasm you might have for cleaning the toilets 😉 ok maybe not that bad but you get it. Things we know we need to do are often hard to just jump in and get started on.
We might think things like:
“I need to lose weight”
” I should lose weight for my health”
“I really need to start exercising”
“My clothes are tighter I really need to cut out those extra servings”
” I know I need to eat better. Guess I should belly up to more brussel sprouts”
“My doctor told me I needed to make changes to not have future problems”
Then we go off and do crazy things like this:
“Come Monday, it’s going down. I’m doing it. But before then, I better get rid of all this junk food” ( and you eat it)
“I’m going to the gym and start classes and do some lifting and then I’m gonna run 3 miles!” ( and then you hurt so bad the next day from making your body do activities it hasn’t seen in years you vow exercise will kill you before fatness and you stop)
“I’m not going to eat ( all your fav things) and I’m going on a 1200 calorie diet and I will lose that 20 lbs in a month!” ( you only last two days ’cause all you think of is the foods you told yourself you couldn’t have ’cause they were now “bad” and the to few calories have made you eyeball every moving thing as possible snack fare… eventually sending you into a binge mode… where you determine “next Monday” you’ll start again.)
“I’m going to lose 15 lbs. in 21 days! All those ads I see say it can be done” ( but you get discouraged ’cause the 5 lbs a week isn’t dropping off and you think weight loss really must not be meant for you)
So let’s stop right here.
You DO have the motivation. It’s in your mind and you have a desire… you just need to move to a place of implementing it and putting it to work for you.
The biggest reason ( I think) people have good intentions and don’t get to far is that they set far to lofty goals with a quick turn around time and get disappointed when it doesn’t happen.
Gaining all your weight doesn’t happen in 2-4 weeks.
Getting physically out of shape doesn’t occur overnight.
Transforming your body is a process that can take quite awhile, depending on your goals.
I’ve been on my health/fitness journey for 8 years this month ( go me! haha) and it has taken time to get to where I’m at. My goals (physically and aesthetically ) might look different from yours but my transformation didn’t happen in weeks, months or even a year. I’ve moved forward every single day working at better choices all through my day, getting up if I had a bad day, and moving forward. Most importantly, never giving up.
You do that long enough and stuff happens!
As I lost some weight it became easier to continue being motivated (obviously) but at the start I had to determine I was going to purposefully make better food choices, know what balanced servings were, and get my butt up and moving whether I felt like it or not. Basically, I was restructuring myself by building some new habits.
So you, my dear 1.5 readers, you have motivation but what if you just approached getting started with small, realistic goals and just…eased into it ?
Maybe it could look like this:
I’m just going to start tomorrow… it’s Thursday…but hey why not? I don’t need to wait for Monday. I’m going to just get out and start with a walk..
And you do it. And you feel successful. You begin to look at how you’re eating and adjust your servings… eating a bit less and realizing you’re just as satisfied with less and actually feel better ’cause you aren’t…stuffed….
You head out for another walk… going a bit farther next time… going easy and allowing your body to adjust to new activities..
You start looking at “treats” you allow yourself and determine … do I really need that ? Consider the definition of treat… “an event or item that is out of the ordinary and gives great pleasure” that would mean “treats” weren’t an every day or all the time occurrence.
A few days go by and you are taking those daily steps and weirdly, it’s motivating you to keep on, you’re feeling successful. Ok, that one day didn’t go so hot, but you got up the next morning and kept at it like a boss. You understand that losing weight and getting fit is a process and you’ve determined to settle in for the ride.
You will be successful. Every positive step you take will motivate you to press forward.
Let me give you an illustration from my life. When I decided I was ready to tackle my first marathon and after all my initial excitement of committing to it had settled in this thought literally descended on me….
“Holy crap! 26.2 miles! 26.2 miles! You ARE crazy…how are you going to do that? What are you thinking?”
It was THE last time those thoughts trampled through my head. If I was motivated to train for half marathons and run them, I could do a full. I took my training apart like a puzzle and mentally on my runs I thought of it as my “marathon puzzle” every mile I covered became one more piece into the puzzle. I focused on short goals without becoming overwhelmed with the entire big picture.
It CAN be daunting when you stop and ponder running 26.2 miles… or more so, the training… I personally think the training requires much more motivation and discipline to arrive at the starting line on race day ready to take on those final 26.2 miles.
So much like weight loss, don’t allow yourself to get overwhelmed at the big picture. You possess the motivation to do it. You want to take small pieces at a time, much like my training, piece by piece, building up to something bigger. When you approach it in small, realistic pieces you will see….
You are capable of accomplishing great and awesome things… really… you are.