Motivation (or lack thereof) is the biggest killer for any diet and healthy body. Many people who start a diet are seriously motivated at the beginning but then as time goes by and results aren’t as fast as you thought they would be, motivation plummets.
The key thing to remember is that nothing is instant, and if it is, it’s not natural and probably not good for you in the long run. One of the best quotes we’ve seen at a gym was “You didn’t suddenly gain those extra 20 pounds over night, what makes you think you’ll lose them that fast?” This just means it takes time to tone your body, so don’t expect to have that perfect shape with a week of diet and exercise.
Here are three ways of keeping motivated while dieting. There are many more, but these three really work for us.
- Use the mirror, not the scale. At the start of your diet, stand in front of a mirror after a shower. Notice where you want to lose some fat, and want to sculpt some muscle. Take a mental picture of your ‘before’ body and watch it change as you begin your diet and exercising. Better yet, take a picture to keep your ‘before’ body in view and reference it as you go. Don’t rely on a scale to gauge your results. We don’t even own a scale in our home because as you lose fat and and gain muscle tone with exercising, your weight may not drop fast because the fat is being replaced by toned muscle.
- Start with a friend. This can be a husband, wife, family member or close friend. Go through the diet with them. Use each other as coach when one doesn’t want to use a fast day or go for a run. Having someone to plan meals with, get groceries with, learn about healthy eating with and train with is a great way to stay motivated because then its not just yourself that you’re letting down.
- Use a variety of foods. No one likes to eat the same thing every day. Research the best foods possible for fasting days, and keep eating healthy on the free days. Mix up the foods, trade recipes with your dieting partner, and search the internet for healthy (low calorie) foods. And once you’re in a pattern of eating well, modify recipes yourself to get your favorite tastes together.
You really do have the power to get the best body possible. It takes motivation and planning, but at the end, the results will speak for themselves, and you’ll be happier for the hard work you did.
What have you used to motivate yourself when the going gets tough? Please share your experiences in the comments box below…