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8 Ways to Motivate Yourself to Workout and Eat Healthier

Aug 30th 2010 at 8:55 AM

1. Find Your Reasons Why (and the more reasons the better) 

You need to figure out a compelling purpose. For example, if your goal is to lose 25 lbs you need to identify WHY that's important to you. Is it to feel sexier for your spouse, fit into that old pair jeans, or feel more confident? Once you identify your initial reason, keep asking “why?” to go deeper and finally come up with true reason that will motivate you!

2. Connect to Your Core Values

This is the ultimate secret.  If you can connect the process (ie. working out, eating healthier) to your core values, even in small ways, you can change your game.  For instance, some core values might include freedom, happiness, love, connection, family, or growth. Figure out what matters to you most and work from there.

3. Change Your Mindset

You can instantly find your more enjoyment in working out by shifting your mindset from “having to workout” to “getting to workout”. I have a good friend who always says, “I've got to workout, I've got to workout!” He feels compelled and thus less empowered. I told him to consider adopting the phrase, “I get to workout”, which would put him in a state of gratitude instead of obligation. Be difference.

4. Anchor the Feeling

Remember how good it feels when you finish you workout or eat a healthy meal. Find a way to anchor that feeling into your body so that anytime the going gets tough you can easily revert back to feeling that way. For instance, after an exhilarating workout you may want to do a fist pump to celebrate. Do this enough times in that state and you'll anchor the good feeling. In the future, you can do a fist pump at any time of day to get that great feeling once again.

5. Use Reference Points From Past Successes

Sometimes you might feel overwhelmed or unsure about your ability to get in a good workout or prepare a healthy meal. However, if you can think back to similar situations in the past (ie. reference points) where you were successful, then realize that you can do it again. If you were once able to do 50 push in one go, then go back to that experience and reassure yourself that you can do it again – if that's your goal.

6. Find a Meaningful Metaphor 

Find a metaphor that fuels you – a tag line if you will. Maybe you're the “Little Engine that Could.”  Maybe you're “in your element.”  Maybe you are “David vs. Goliath (the workout). One of the most powerful things you can do is find a metaphor that connects to your values.  Whatever you choose make sure it resonates with you.

7. Pair Up

This is one of my favorite ways to make something fun and sustainable.  One person's painful task, is another's pleasure.  Pair up with somebody who compliments you or who can mentor you and get you over the humps. This is why hiring a trainer can be a great way to get your butt into shape! At the very least, training with a friend can take your workouts to a whole new level.

8. Take Action and Reward Yourself

Here's a secret that once you know it and apply it, can change your life.  Action often comes before motivation.  You simply start doing an activity and then your motivation kicks in, especially if you reward yourself for taking action. For example, you might not always look forward to your workout, but once you start, I'm sure you find your flow. And once your workout is done reward yourself with something that makes you feel good – and preferably not a piece of chocolate cake!

Need more motivation for your workouts? Need inspiration and proven strategies to make eating healthier easy?

=> Discover how the world's top fitness experts do it!

Please to comment
Aug 30th 2010 at 11:31 PM by yhbecpublisher
Hello Barrie, fantastic set of ways to motivate yourself for any goal. I love the way you have applied them to starting and maintaining a healthy routine for eating and exercising.

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