Getting in shape can be a long, slow process, and without a strong motivation, it’s just too easy to postpone going to the gym and lounge on the couch eating mint chocolate chip ice cream instead. Fortunately, there are all sorts of ways you can work to motivate yourself. Not all of them work for everyone, but you’re sure to find a way that works for you. Here are a few of our favorite methods.
Some might think weighing yourself daily is too discouraging if the weight isn’t coming off fast enough, but studies show that people who weigh themselves every day are more successful in achieving the weight they want. A daily weigh-in keeps your goals at the forefront of your mind, and when the pounds start coming off, seeing that number go down each day can give you the energy you need to stick to your daily routine.
2. Aim For Improvement, Not Perfection
If you aim for an hour-long workout every single day and vow you’ll never splurge on a cheeseburger, your hopes will be dashed the first time you slip. This can lead to giving up, because why start if you can’t stick to it? Set your expectations at a reasonable level, knowing that you will sometimes skip a day or need that extra chocolate. Then pick yourself back up and get right back on the horse.
3. Exercise Throughout the Day
For those of us with extremely busy schedules, it’s hard to be motivated to go to the gym during leisure time, so incorporate physical activity into your day. Take the stairs to your apartment instead of the elevator. Park further away from work so you’ll have to walk a few extra minutes. Get yourself a pedometer to chart your overall activity, and try to increase how many steps you take every day. Learn more here about how a pedometer can help you stay on track with your weight goal.
4. Make It Social
Joining an exercise class or asking a friend to be your jogging buddy is a great way to push yourself to work out when you don’t feel like it. It not only gives you a chance to hang out with friends and meet new people, but you’re also less likely to bail on class or on your afternoon run if you feel you’ll be letting someone down.