Last Updated on May 21, 2023 by Michael Brockbank
Trying to lose weight can be exceptionally difficult, especially if you lack motivation. Sure, it’s easy to say you want to lose weight, but are you really putting in the effort to make a few lifestyle changes?
A lack of motivation is probably one of the biggest downfalls for those trying to slim down. Especially when they don’t have focus or a clear plan of action in place.
Many more won’t put in the effort simply because of the lifestyle changes that will need to be done. After all, without change, they’re at risk of putting all that weight back on.
In fact, it can be quite a vicious cycle if you’re not careful.
How to Increase Motivation to Lose Weight
Most of us will come out of the gate strong. However, in many instances, it won’t take long before someone pitters out. I know I’ve had my fair share of moments of giving up.
But giving up guarantees that I would never hit my goals.
So, what are some ways that I keep the motivation to lose weight even when I struggle?
1. Know the Reason Why
Your motivation can be driven by the whole reason you want to lose weight in the first place. Yet, is it a reason that can keep you focused for the long term?
For me, it’s all about keeping myself alive for one more year. Having your heart stop can be an incredible motivator.
When thinking of your reason, try to go beyond the cosmetic. Yes, it would be pretty nice to see what you look like once you hit some fitness goals. But is that all you really want out of life?
For some, that may be reason enough. And there’s nothing wrong with that as long as it can maintain your motivation.
The problem with just sticking with cosmetic reasons is that you are more likely to run the risk of putting the weight back on. You’ll see this all the time when people reach a certain weight and then just give up maintaining health and fitness.
2. Have Ultimate Goals
So, I separated goals from reasons because there can be a lot of things that contribute to reasons. And ultimate goals are more of aspects that you can focus on to keep going.
For example, I would love to dress up as a superhero for Halloween without looking like Spider-Man, The Trailer Park Edition.
I also have a few ideas for some fun fitness content, especially being a man closing in on his 50s. Not to mention that I simply just want to do more physical activities outside without getting winded.
Another one of my ultimate goals is to cross the entire state of Colorado on a bicycle. That’s the whole point of why I built this website in the first place.
The point is that the ultimate goals you’d like to accomplish can work well to boost motivation to get fit and lose weight. That is as long as they’re realistic goals that you can see yourself accomplishing.
3. Set Reminders in Front of You
If you’re like me, it’s easy to forget the things you want to work on. This is where setting reminders in front of you can help steer you on the right path.
This is especially true if you are prone to snacking without realizing what you’re doing.
I can’t count the number of times when I’ll be sitting at my desk polishing off a jar of peanut butter on autopilot. I won’t even realize I’m doing it until it’s too late.
Keeping little reminders around helps me remember that I have certain goals I want to hit.
Something else that helps get me motivated in the morning is my alarm. It’s set to play “Make Way,” which is one of those songs that make me feel unstoppable. I wake up feeling legendary on most days.
4. Convince Yourself to Meet Your Goals
The hardest part about maintaining motivation to lose weight is how easy it is to talk yourself out of things. Excuses are easy to come by, especially at 5 am.
Convince yourself that you need to get moving in order to reach those ultimate goals.
Here’s another example; I force myself to get active during my breaks throughout the day while working. I’ve gotten into the habit of stopping when the alarm goes off and pushing away from my computer.
The bottom line is that you might have to push yourself to take action.
5. Work Toward Personal Fitness Records
One of my favorite ways to gamify fitness is to set and break personal fitness records. It’s one of the primary ways of motivating myself to keep working on being fit.
For example, I geeked out pretty hard when I was able to whip out 22 push-ups. My previous record was eight. Even though a few people scoffed, it was quite an accomplishment for me. And that’s all that really matters.
It doesn’t matter what anyone else can do. You’re only in competition with yourself.
You’ll be amazed by how excited you get when you’re capable of doing things you never thought possible. That feeling of pride you’ll get can work wonders for fueling motivation.
6. Get Excited Over EVERY Victory
Speaking of getting excited, relish in every victory you experience, regardless of how small. As I said a moment ago, I was quite thrilled when I broke my push-up record.
Even if you only lose 0.6 pounds this week, that’s better than going in the opposite direction.
Another example is how much weight I’ve lost. Sure, it’s taking me four years to lose the last 40 pounds. Yet I’ve still lost 80 from when I started and was able to keep it off this whole time.
I’m able to sustain my weight because of how much I learned about myself and my eating habits.
In any case, keep in mind that any victory is still a victory. Even if you did one more push-up today than you did last week, that’s still a record-breaker.
7. Only Compare Yourself
As I pointed out earlier, you’re only in competition with yourself. Don’t try to compare what you can do against people who are in far better shape. Sure, you can use them as inspiration. However, health and fitness will come down to your own wants, needs, and capabilities.
Besides, how many people can you trust nowadays on social media? Most show off a lifestyle and level of fitness that is just unrealistic to the average person.
All that really matters is how you feel about yourself and what your reasons are for losing weight.
For instance, I would love to have a physique somewhere between Deadpool and Captain America. I use this vision as motivation and inspiration. However, I am also realistic about what I can handle and keep an eye on my own progress.
8. Create a Specific, Energizing Playlist
Music has the potential to greatly impact your mental state. It can draw out emotions, spark long-forgotten memories, and promote an empowered mindset.
Not to mention the effects music has on sleep, anxiety, and blood pressure.
Creating a playlist of your favorite music that gets your foot tapping can help inspire and motivate you to do more. This is why I currently have 102 MP3s on my computer all geared toward fast-paced, energizing music.
For me, I simply find more motivation to lose weight and stay active when I have the right songs playing in the background.
9. Join a Sporting League of Some Kind
Although I haven’t been able to join a league yet, it’s on my to-do list this year. For one thing, I just want to get out of the house and be social.
When you’re competing in a sport of some kind, it can help boost motivation for health and fitness. Especially if you are competitive and want to perform your very best.
Working out and lifting weights can ultimately change how you play the game.
For example, I’ve added more than 20 yards to my drive in golf by adding more lat pulldowns and flies. Plus, I’ve noticed a considerable difference in accuracy thanks to strengthening my grip and improving my overall balance.
Any sport you decide to pick up is going to benefit from your workout routines.
10. Would You Survive a Zombie Apocalypse?
Now, I don’t believe that a zombie apocalypse would really happen. But if it did, would you be an asset or burden to your family? Would you be able to outrun or outfight the zombie horde, or become a midnight meal?
Ok, all fun aside, being able to handle yourself in the worst-case scenario is always a good thing. Especially today when we’re faced with various weather anomalies, earthquakes, and volcanos.
If a 9.0 earthquake struck your town today, would you be on the casualty list, or could you help save others? If you were dangling from a bridge with one arm, could your family pull you up to safety, or would your weight guarantee a fall?
As odd as it sounds, these are some of the things I think about when it comes to health and fitness. It’s less about what I look like on Instagram and more about surviving the next major event.
In reality, that’s a much greater concern than how many likes you get while wearing a swimsuit. Those “likes” aren’t going to help your survival if things go south.
Being Negative Will Sap Motivation to Lose Weight
Perhaps the most important thing to realize is just how much being negative can eliminate the motivation to lose weight. For those of us with eating disorders, it can feel like an uphill battle all day long.
For instance, I am a stress eater. And thanks to my life being the epitome of chaos, it’s exceptionally difficult not to bury my face in a jar of peanut butter every night.
Finding ways to address triggers other than eating has helped.
I know it’s difficult for many to remain in a positive attitude all day. But if you don’t find a way to cope in a more positive manner, it’ll take longer to reach your goals.
Besides, being in a positive mindset can help with a variety of things outside of the motivation to lose weight. You’ll find a lot of tasks easier to manage and see more opportunities as they present themselves.
Now, I’m not saying that you should walk around like Mickey Mouse on uppers. But a lot of great things can happen when you’re in a good mood.
Keep Yourself Motivated for Fitness Goals
For many of us, it takes a great deal of effort to maintain the motivation to lose weight and focus on our exercise routines. Nonetheless, finding ways to keep yourself inspired will work wonders for you in the long run.
Remember, though, you’re only in competition with yourself. Even the smallest steps toward where you want to be are still moving you forward.
Be proud of every milestone you achieve for yourself.