Last Updated on September 8, 2017 by Michael Brockbank
A lot of us will start of strong in health and fitness goals. However, a large portion of us will slowly decline in effort. This is one of the reasons why the term “fitness” peaks in January and bottoms out by the end of February in a Google search. Everyone starts off with a healthy New Year’s Day Resolution only to lose interest. What can you do to keep the momentum?
Staying Motivated is Key
Keeping yourself motivated to stay healthy or lose weight is often difficult. For many of us, it takes a great deal of effort to keep an eye on the prize. Myself, I constantly battle with depression which makes it even harder to keep the momentum.
So, what can I do to keep the motivation strong? To be honest, I am not 100% sure. After all, every person is different. However, here are a few ways that help me retain focus and continue working to better myself.
Think of a stampeding cow and how its momentum gives it enough force to break through various obstacles.
Set Personal Short-Term Achievements
I am a big fan of setting and beating personal goals. And this isn’t merely for health and fitness, either. Nearly every part of your life can benefit if you strive to surpass a personal best. For me, it’s making sure I stay in the green for calorie count within the day in MyFitnessPal and beating my records in Exercise.com.
Achieving short-term goals is a way to build confidence in yourself, which leads to continued activity. If you feel good about meeting a goal, you’re more likely to set a new one to surpass. For instance, I was only able to crack out eight push-ups when I started. Now, I set a record of doing 22 a few months ago.
I know I haven’t been doing as good as I could be lately, but it’s never too late to reclaim your health. The most difficult part is changing your mindset. If you’re not mentally focused into getting healthier and fit, it’s not going to happen.
Every Day, Remind Yourself ‘Why’
As corny as it may sound, a morning reminder in the mirror may be quite helpful. I tend to “talk” to myself during a morning walk and break down why I need to keep focused for the day. I do this for both getting healthy and improving my career.
You don’t have to strive to be on the cover of Time’s Man of the Year issue. Fitness and health do so much more than just alter your appearance. I’ve noticed improvements in things like my golf game, stamina for house chores and grocery shopping. A lot of these daily reminders help focus my mind on why I am trying to be healthier.
I wanted to be at a certain goal weight or physical appearance by Halloween. I only have a little over seven weeks left…and 50 pounds to go. Yeah, I’m not seeing it happen either. However, I will still look better by the end of this October than I did last year.
Register with Interesting Newsletters
I find following a good newsletter to be quite effective for helping me keep the momentum. Some are inspirational while others provide me with information to improve my activities. That’s how I learned about the ARX platform and what it can do to gamify fitness.
I’m not saying you should sign up with every newsletter you come across. Find subscriptions in those websites you find worthy. Just make sure you take the time to read the emails that come in. You may find some of them to inspire you to do better throughout the day.
If you’re worried about spamming your email, you can always create an address specifically for collecting newsletters you like. You have access to all kinds of free services such as gmail.
Identify and Deal with Short-Comings
Discovering faults is a difficult process for many people. After all, not everyone wants to admit they are having problems. However, identifying these issues only helps you to resolve them.
Take me, for example. For the past few weeks, I’ve spent way too much time on YouTube. Once I realized how much of my day I was wasting, I decided to do something about it. Now, I try to postpone my video watching until after 3:30 pm…about the time I am done working for the day.
It’s one thing to identify a problem, but it’s another to deal with it. You need to be committed and realize your issues are hindering your momentum and success. Honestly plot out your day and see where your faults reside. Then, take steps necessary to correct them.
Be More Social
Like the saying goes, “Strength in numbers.” This is true in virtually any situation. When it comes to building a crescendo for health and fitness, having a strong support structure is ideal. It’s not just your family that can help you keep the momentum, either.
A lot of people will join gyms not just because of the exercise equipment, but because of the social aspect. It’s about being around those who have like-minded goals. Make new friends who are also working on improving their lifestyles. Not only does it help keep you motivated, but you might also learn new things about yourself.
You can also be social through the Internet. Sites like Facebook are often filled with groups consisting of people who are just like you. And if you can’t find one that fits your lifestyle perfectly, create one. Engage others as often as you can as it may inspire you to stay motivated.
Join Local Sporting Leagues
One thing I miss terribly is being on a bowling team. That was back when I was in far better shape – and much younger. It’s something I am trying to get back into as of late. And here is why.
Being on a team can help you stay focused for physical fitness. Since I’ve put more work into my arms and shoulders, I’ve added more than 30 yards to my drive from the tee. It’s golf, if you’re wondering. Physical strength benefits control and power. Think of it as training for your preferred sport.
Being in a league also adds in the social element. I’ve met a lot of amazing people when I was bowling, and some are still friends to this day. Realize the team is depending on you to be at top performance.
I’m not saying you need to train as hard as a professional athlete. But health and fitness activities will surely boost your game.
Find a Hero Who You Find Inspirational
A lot of people look up to someone to find inspiration. In my case, it’s Ryan Reynolds. This started because of my midlife crisis and realizing the star of “Deadpool” is only a couple of months younger than I. Not to mention I like him as an actor and as an individual.
Role models are beneficial no matter how old you are. It’s about finding someone you can look up to who inspires you for greatness no matter what you want to do with your life. In reality, I have a few people who I look up to both alive and dead.
And don’t worry if your role model is fictitious or sounds “silly” to you. Even a fictional character can be a role model. It all comes down to why you chose that particular person and if he or she inspires you for greatness.
Keep the Momentum to Live Longer
It is well documented that health and fitness increases a person’s lifespan. Personally, I would like to be around when it comes time to walk my daughter down the aisle or attend her graduation from college. As a result, I am going to work on maintaining my momentum for being healthy. It’s not easy, but it’s better than the alternative.