So now that fall has set in and the weather is getting colder, many people have a tendancy to let their motivation taper off. Holiday season is approaching, and with it, pumpkin pies and turkey dinners. So how do you find motivation to stick to your goals when sometimes all you want to do is cozy up with a gooey bowl of Kraft Dinner and watch a movie? Here are some ideas:
- If you don’t have a goal, make one 🙂 (Right now. Write it down.)
- Set mini goals that lead to your major goals. They can be as simple as “This week I am going to pack a healthy lunch every day for work”.
- Recruit a supportive friend. We are influenced big-time by the people we spend the most time with. Plan social activities together that include being active and healthy, rather than falling into the weekly trap of drinking and eating crappy food just because “everyone is doing it.” (Though there is a time and a place!)
- Find a few quotes that inspire you and read them every day. Sounds cheesy but it works! Try your screensaver, an index card that you put in your wallet, or even the corner of your bedroom mirror.
- Listen to upbeat music. Better yet, make a workout playlist (or cassette for those of you with walkmans).
- Paint it awesome. Bright colours and 80s fashions are all the rage right now so head on down to Value Village and get yourself a few oversize neon t-shirts and a pair of sissors – a few clever snips and ta-da! you have a workout tank top that will make Jane Fonda jealous. For bonus points, pair it with some wild printed tights and knit yourself some leg-warmers. Amazing. How can you not be motivated to work out, even if it’s just get to wear this? (More conservatively, getting a new workout outfit at Lululemon or Sportscheck can be equally as motivating so do it up as your budget allows!)
- Volunteer. First, giving your time to those less fortunate than yourself is a good thing in and of itself. Secondly, seeing the challenges that so many people face every day will likely give you an appreciation for the choices you have in yours. For example, you can decide what you want to eat for dinner rather than having to take what you get (which isn’t usually pretty). Like your parents said at the dinner table “There are starving kids in Africa who would lick your plate.”
- Make a fitness “bucket list”. From renting an aerobics video from the library to trying a Crossfit workout, there’s always new things to try. Make a list of things you think might be fun and then tackle them in a reasonable manner (the definition of “reasonable” is entirely up to you, but I recommend 1 or 2 a month, depending on the item).
- Make a list of all the things you like about working out. Read it when you are having trouble pushing yourself to go.
- Think about the post-workout shake. I won’t lie – this one motivates me all the time because I love sweets! After a good workout, your body needs a good does of carbs and protein to repair and build, making it the perfect time to have some extra carbs.
- Lighten up! Some of us are very “type A” or tend to be more serious than others but ironically putting too much pressure on yourself can be counterproductive sometimes. You can still have serious goals and achieve them while having fun 😉