Fitness News

Keep your weight loss motivation high

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Struggling to keep up your motivation to lose weight? It’s natural to fall in a bit of a slump after the initial enthusiasm wears off, but the key to losing weight quickly and healthily is maintaining the drive to stick to your plans. It won’t always be easy- but you can get your motivation back, and keep it. Here are some tips to help you stay strong, positive, and inspired to reach your goals…

Weight loss motivation tip 1: Get information

Learning new healthy eating tips and exercise strategies regularly will keep reminding you of your goals. Sign up to email newsletters or find a website that gives you regular updates- having a new idea each day will keep your diet plan interesting and get you motivated to try new things and find out what works for you.

Weight loss motivation tip 2: Have clear goals

If you set yourself clear, achievable goals with deadlines, you’ll have something specific to work towards and a timeline to keep you on track, giving you a sense of urgency that will prompt you to always keep your aims in mind. Choose long-term, medium-term and short-term goals that will get you to where you want to be in a healthy amount of time. Write them down, and make sure you refer to them regularly and track your progress.

Weight loss motivation tip 3: Make a plan

Plan out your week with small goals for each day. Regularly refer to your plan and think about the steps you need to take to reach your goals. Having a well-thought out strategy is a good way to keep your motivation high, as it will remind you that it is possible to lose the weight you want. 

Weight loss motivation tip 4: Visualise it

It might sound corny, but the power of visualisation shouldn’t be underestimated. Imagine yourself at your goal weight- in as much detail as you can. What are your wearing? What are you doing? How does it feel? Keep picturing yourself looking your best and remind yourself that you have the power to get there. Chances are, the image in your head will be strong enough to overpower that chocolate craving. If you used to be slimmer and have gained weight, find some old photos of yourself and put them where you’ll see them regularly.

Weight loss motivation tip 5: Build a support network

Surrounding yourself with people who respect your goals and will encourage you to stick to your plans (rather than persuading you to have that last piece of cake!) is one of the best ways to stay motivated and in control. Tell your close friends and family about what you want to achieve and try to recruit a support buddy who can share your struggles and triumphs and even work out with you. If you don’t know anyone in that position, join a chat room or online forum discussing weight loss issues- you’ll find like-minded people from all over Australia or even the world who can help you to stay on track.

Weight loss motivation tip 6: Keep a food and exercise diary

Keeping a record of what you are eating and what exercise you are doing each day is a good way to keep your motivation levels high. The reason is that it provides a lot of self-awareness, so it keeps you focused and committed to your goals, and forces you to pay attention to what you are eating, and when and why. Some studies have suggested that keeping a food diary can help you lose twice as much weight- so grab a pen and start tracking now!

Weight loss motivation tip 7: Reward yourself

Think of some small rewards (preferably not food-related!) that you can give yourself when you reach some of your short-term goals. Choose something that makes you feel good, like indulging in a massage, or even having a weekend away.

Weight loss motivation tip 8: Buy new clothes

Treating yourself to a new pair of jeans or another item of clothing can be a powerful motivator to lose weight. Buy something just slightly too small, so that you know you’ll have to lose a few kilos before you can wear it. Hanging it up where you can easily see it in your wardrobe will remind you each morning when you get dressed to stay strong and on track throughout the day.   

Weight loss motivation tip 9: Place reminders around the house

Find things that inspire you. It might be pictures of people at your ideal weight, or even old pictures of yourself where you looked your best. Some people like having motivational quotes or affirmations- find something that works for you. If you’re embarrassed to have them stuck on the fridge or on the mirror, you can try something more discrete like saving them into your phone. Then you can look at them whenever you need an extra motivational boost.

Weight loss motivation tip 10: Find a gym buddy

Recruit a friend who’s either already into fitness and can help to give you advice and motivation for your workout routine, or who also wants to lose weight and can join you at the gym. Being in it together makes the whole process much easier, and you’ll be much more likely to keep the commitment.

Weight loss motivation tip 11: Hire a trainer

If you can afford it, it might be worth hiring a personal trainer to keep you motivated. They can show you the most effective ways to work out and develop an exercise plan for you tailored to your goals, as well as standing by you to push you to work harder. Even just a one-off session is a good investment- it will renew your enthusiasm and give you some new ideas, along with a specific program you can then follow on your own.

Weight loss motivation tip 12: List your reasons for wanting to lose weight

People want to lose weight for all different reasons- and it can help to really crystalise what yours are. Write down all the general and specific reasons you want to lose weight, and keep it somewhere you can refer to it often. Then when you start to feel like ‘what’s the point?’ you’ll have a clear set of answers to remind yourself.

Weight loss motivation tip 13: Don’t keep unhealthy food in the house

Of course, this is easier if you live alone. But if you can control the groceries that get bought, don’t buy any junk food. If there’s none in the house, there’s nothing to tempt you when you start craving sugary things. Try to avoid going to the supermarket when you’re hungry- you’ll be far more easily persuaded by things you see browsing the aisles. Make a list of what you’re going to buy before you go, and stick to it. Avoid the confectionary aisle completely if you can! 

Weight loss motivation tip 14: Mix things up

Motivation lags when you get bored of your weight loss routine. Keep things interesting by trying new recipes and different workouts- even just changing the route of your run, or switching one of your yoga classes for pilates. You might even discover different things that you enjoy more, so keep trying out new ideas.




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