If you have ever tried to lose weight, you know how difficult it can be to keep your motivation in full swing after a couple of weeks of hardcore dieting. There will always be setbacks.
The best way to approach a weight loss regime is to understand that your motivation will sometimes wane, but that simply working through these difficult periods can result in great results. In other words, you should expect to fail sometimes. It is part of the process, but you should not let this from keeping you at a permanent impasse.
When tough times do strike, keep yourself well armed with helpful information and sage advice from those who have been there before. Here are five ways to keep your mojo going, even when you do not want to.
1. When you fall, dust yourself off, and get back in the saddle. You might want to consider making this your mantra. Write it on a piece of paper in big bold letters and put it on your fridge: Get Back In the Saddle. Sure, this might make your guests scratch their heads, but you will know what it means.
In other words, expect that you will not always eat the right thing. That something will happen someday and you will have to miss your planned workout. Many people use these temporary setbacks as an excuse to abandon their weight loss regime altogether. This is a big mistake! Even if you did indulge in that hot fudge sundae, that is no excuse to throw in the towel. Simply go back to the gym the next day, and work even harder.
2. Reward yourself. If you are a food lover, maybe you are used to rewarding yourself with food. If you are committed to losing weight, however, you will have to find a new reward method. Set up your own personal reward system. Make a list of all your guilty pleasures. Bubble baths, chick flicks, and a new haircut: whatever works for you. After a long day of work, eating well, and exercise, treat your self to a (non-food!) reward.
3. Picture yourself thin. Everyone has old photographs that they find embarrassing. Use these cringe-inducing picks for a good cause. When you are feeling like all hope is lost, take out these old (or new) pictures and remember why you started your new healthier lifestyle in the first place. This idea could benefit from some pre-planning. If you suspect that somewhere along the line you will lack motivation, consider putting together a motivating picture album.
Find the most unflattering pictures of yourself that you can find (yes, this process might be a tad painful), and compile them in a special album. Only take this album out on those most difficult occasions when you need a reminder of why you are committed to losing weight.
4. Buddy up. Losing weight is always easier when you do it with someone else. Find someone you can exercise with, or share recipes with. Just remember that even if the other person slackens off, this does not give you an excuse to do the same. Your buddy should be someone supportive of your weight loss goals. Make sure you can trust this person to give you the motivation you need when you need it.
5. Reframe you success. So many people rely on their bathroom scales to find out whether they are winning the battle of the bulge. Avoid the bathroom scale! Pick one day out of the week when you will weigh yourself, and no more. More importantly, begin to reframe your success.
Remember, many times you will be getting healthy and more trim, even if you are not seeing this reflected in your bodily weight. Sometimes it may seem like you are getting nowhere just because you have not lost a great deal of weight. The truth is that many people who are sticking to a healthy diet and exercising regularly are not dropping pounds left and right, but instead building muscle.
You should gauge your success by how you look and feel. Do your jeans feel a bit looser around the waist? Can you climb up a flight of stairs without losing your breath? These are tangible signs of success that may not be reflected on your bathroom scale.