Do you feel like you’re always restarting your fitness journey? For some reason, the way the motivation you started with vanishes then creeps back up on you when it feels like it. That’s not cool. So how do you start a fitness journey with no motivation?
Let me tell you! I made mistakes time and time again because I refused to take any or too much advice at once. I either thought I knew everything, or I was always changing things up before sticking to them long enough to see the results. I can’t tell you how frustrating this was for me.
It’s not just me though, the fitness industry is always changing, and just when you think you have things down, another trend pops up. So how do you start your fitness journey when you have no motivation?
In this post, I want to share with you what you can do to start your fitness journey strong and keep it that way even when you want to give up.
SET REALISTIC GOALS
Setting goals is a big deal! Your goals don’t have to be related to the scale, think beyond that. Being healthier is a lifestyle, so you should include things like getting more sleep in, going to events related to your goals so you can meet people with similar interests, or cutting back on random snack spending habits at the grocery store.
Starting a fitness journey can be hard, and while you already want to be at the finish line creating habits to help you get there will be a huge help. Here are some goals I set for myself when I first lost 27 pounds:
- Make it to the gym 3-5 times a week
- Hit my protein intake
- Take weekly progress pictures
- Track my progress in the gym
- Focus on my weekly average weight instead of what the scale said every day
- Show up for me every day
TAKE before and after PICTURES
I can’t tell you how much I dreaded this! The thought of standing in front of the camera in my sports bra and swim bottoms made me cringe. No cute posing. No sucking it in.
Just me. Relaxed and my 10-second timer on my iPhone. Click* ok done. Thank god!
But wait, it gets better. Taking progress pictures changed everything for me, especially when I didn’t want to focus on the scale. You’re with your body 24/7 (duh!), so it’s hard to notice the small changes that happen.
Take weekly progress pictures (front, side, back, and front), and I promise they can be eye-opening and motivating for when you think you aren’t making progress.
I like to create a separate album on my iPhone, where I can store them all in one place then create comparison photos with this app.
P.S I’m currently on a new fitness journey to lose 20 – 25 pounds while working out from home. If you’re interested, click here to check out how it’s going.
CREATE A ROUTINE
Creating a routine is another reason why setting realistic goals is essential when you plan out your week. If you’re going to the gym six days a week then disappearing for two weeks like I used to well, then I want you to be realistic with how many times a week you can make it to the gym. And make this a part of your routine.
Also, there’s something about planning my week and crossing things off that makes me feel so accomplished. I like to write and design my month and block out any important days I know ill be busy. This way, I know which days I can and can’t make it to the gym.
Your schedule and routine will take a little tweaking here and there, and that’s fine.
START A JOURNAL
If you’re like me and don’t know what to write in your journal, start by only tracking your progress, over time you can write down how you feel. As I was clearing things out of my room earlier, I ran across this journal from when I was doing CrossFit. I also found another journal where I wrote down how I craved sweets and was disappointed that I couldn’t stick to my goals.
It’s been more than five years since then, and reading that made me realize how much has changed. Take my advice, your journal doesn’t have to be perfect, but it will be a good reflection years later to see how you have grown.
EDUCATE YOURSELF ALONG THE WAY
Along my fitness journey, I’ve learned so many things. One of them is to stop chasing quick fixes and fast results. Taking lousy advice can create disappointment and frustration when you don’t see the results you were looking forward to as an outcome. And usually, when this happens, you say screw it.
I was sick and tired of this, and so when I decided to stop following any advice, I started to educate myself.
Take the time to read books from experts in the industry or listen to podcasts.
2019 is the year I told myself I would start my journey to be debt-free. Because of this, I currently have a full-time and a part-time job. Three out of seven days I am gone from home for 13-14 hours, two out of the seven days I am gone for eight hours, and on the weekends I get to stay home
I can’t stress enough how vital meal planning and prepping is. It also makes life so much easier.
Prep your protein in bulk. I’m currently trying to eat more plant-based, so my primary source of protein is tofu, but I used to do the same thing when I mainly ate meat.
Because I love to keep things simple, I recently purchased my very first air fryer, and my life never felt smoother. I’ll cut up and prep tofu, some sort of veggie or potato, and spray a little coconut oil before I toss it in the air fryer. Cook for 20 minutes at 400 degrees and BAM lunch or dinner is served.
HAVE YOUR GYM CLOTHES READY
I’ve been trying to get rid of a bunch of clothes that I don’t need to save space and time when it comes to picking out clothes. I tried on every single workout legging I own (that was a workout in itself right there) and kept all the ones I know I will wear in the same place.
As a result, I am feeling so much more organized, and I save so much time.
Pack your gym clothes the night before so you are ready to go the next day or keep your trunk stocked with your gym essentials. Here’s what I usually layout for myself.
- Sports bra
Already in the trunk of my car.
- Jump rope
- Lifting shoes
- Running shoes
- Foam roller
TAKE IT ONE DAY AT A TIME
There will be days where you feel like quitting, especially when you don’t feel like eating towards your goals or making it to the gym.
There are days when I look at my workout and feel like skipping everything.
Make it a priority to work out and be active in doing something you enjoy. Don’t look at what you need to do a week, month, a year from now, or how long it will take.
If you need to, take a scoop of pre-workout and play your favorite song and pump yourself up. Work through each exercise and tell yourself it’s just 8,10, 12, or how many ever reps you need to do.
Honestly, the hardest part is just getting there. But your body and mind deserves the attention!
DON’T COMPARE YOURSELF TO ANYONE
Comparing yourself sucks, and it won’t get you anywhere. You know this, though, yet everyone still does it all the time.
She lifts heavier than me…
She eats more than me and is slimmer…
What are her macros…
In the end, no one else matters.
If you’re going to compare anything – compare yourself in all the areas you once felt you had zero control over.
Did you make it to the gym? Are you getting better at not snacking? Did you make time to meal prep? Did you make it to the gym early before work? Any accomplishment is a reminder that your growth counts in all areas.
A fitness journey doesn’t thrive off of motivation.
There will be days when you just hate your friend that’s eating whatever and feel you can’t. There will also be days when it’s cold outside, or it’s raining, and all you want to do is stay curled in bed.
But you can do it.
Use that motivation in the beginning to create healthier habits for your new lifestyle. Try setting your alarm with a message to yourself. The alarm on my phone says something like, “Stay in bed if you’re a quitter.” Haha, that one usually gets me up.
So how do you start a fitness journey when you have no motivation? How do you get those jaw-dropping before and after pictures you see all over social media?
With the saturated amount of information out there, it is your job to stay in your lane. Whether your goals are to lose weight, create a healthier lifestyle, or get strong, make it a priority to set realistic goals that will work towards your bigger goal.
Document your journey and create a routine that’s going to allow you to kick ass every week, whether it be in the gym or the kitchen.
But more importantly, remember that this is your journey and no one else’s. Go at your speed, and don’t get caught up comparing yourself to anyone else. That won’t do anyone any good; let me tell you.
Lastly, remain consistent. Consistency is the only way you’re going to make progress.
What is something you like to do to get motivated to workout?