At the start of a new year, it seems like everyone has the motivation to lose weight. But what happens a few weeks in, when the motivation is gone but the excess weight is still there? Perhaps you are left feeling defeated and questioning your goals in the first place. If you’re struggling to keep going, we have some tips to build your motivation back up.
Reevaluate your Goals
If you’re feeling less than inspired, take a look at why you started your weight-loss journey in the first place. Was it to be more comfortable in your clothes? Look and feel better? Was it so you could go off blood pressure medication? Was it so you could comfortably run around the backyard with your children again? Write your reasons down to act as reminders to keep going.
Write a Letter to Your Future Self
If writing down your goals is a good motivator for you, writing a letter to your future self might also have a positive impact. Address a letter to yourself one year from now. Write about how you feel now, and how you hope to feel in a year’s time. Perhaps you want to feel healthier, perhaps you want to fit into a certain top, or perhaps you want to learn to love healthy, nutritious foods. This give you something concrete to work toward and you’ll have the letter to look forward to opening in a year.
Establish a Strong Routine
Making weight-loss work for you is all about sticking to a process that accommodates you and your lifestyle. Don’t force yourself to go vegetarian if you’re a meat-lover. That might work for someone else, but not you. If you hate running, choose swimming instead. If you’re a night owl, choose to exercise after work, rather than getting up an hour or two early to do it in the morning. It will go against your routine and will be that much more difficult to stick with. If you hate kale, find an alternative that you do love. Don’t make things harder on yourself by forcing healthy habits that work for some people but not you.
You might want to make journaling a part of your weight-loss routine. Keeping a food journal is a great way to stay on track. In addition to monitoring what you’re eating, tracking your day-to-day feelings as you move along in your weight-loss journey will allow you to see how you are progressing.
It’s hard to live in the moment when you’re constantly focused on your long-term weight-loss goal, but it’s important to be present and enjoy the process. On your weight-loss journey, you may find that you love getting up early on the weekends to swim laps at the local pool. Focus on that. Allow yourself to feel happy when you can swim one more lap than normal. Praise yourself when you increase the weight you can lift or you can do more push-ups than when you started. Focusing on process goals rather than strictly weight-loss goals will help you appreciate the process. It will motivate you to keep up your healthy routines not just because you want to lose weight, but because you truly enjoy exercising and eating healthy.
A support system is always a great way to stay motivated, as well! Check out our resources to keep you on track.