How does the old saying go? If it were easy, everyone would be doing it. That is precisely the case when it comes to finding and maintaining the motivation to workout and hit those bikini body goals.
Life today is increasingly more fast-paced and for most people, making themselves a priority just doesn’t happen. I, like so many others, have struggled to find the time and mental fortitude to get my sneakers on and work my body the way I know it intrinsically wants. Over time I have homed in on five key strategies to ensuring that I will in fact follow through with the workout, and maintain that discipline for life.
1. Have An End Goal In Mind
Is there a certain amount of weight you want to lose or gain? Do you want a better butt or six-pack abs? What does your goal look like? Before you begin you must have a vision of where you want to go. This can always change of course, and should, as you move along your journey. But you must start somewhere with clear and specific intentions.
2. Create a General Schedule for the Week
It always helps to know what’s on the docket for any particular day so that you’re mentally engaged before you even begin. It doesn’t have to be incredibly detailed, but planning out your workout helps focus you on what needs to be done and removes any resistance or complacency.
My schedule consists of three days of weight training (M,W,F) and two days of cardio (Tu., Th.). On the days I weight train, I change up the types of lifts I do, however I always include squats and some form of calistetics using my body weight as resistance (push-ups, lunges with dumbells, abs, donkey kicks etc).
3. Track Your Diet
And this does not mean go on a diet–forget about calories. In fact if you are working out, you probably need to take in more calories than you are used to, however you must focus on the nutrient level and quality of the food you consume. Use an app like “My Fitness Pal” to input your weight, height, gender, age, and goals, and it will create a customized caloric and macronutrient guide for you. And don’t be put off by the word macros, its just a breakdown of the protein, carbs and fat in your diet.
Diet is 80% of weight loss and affects your emotional and mental state, so this particular strategy should not be overlooked. We really are what we eat.
4. Visualize the Endorphin Rush
On days where I am particularly reticent to workout, I close my eyes and imagine how amazing I feel at the end of my workout. Just by doing that I get a little boost, and it’s enough to get me up and moving. Our bodies want to move, they were designed to travel long distances and do incredibly hard labor in order to survive. Obviously today’s technological advancements eliminate that original paradigm, but that doesn’t mean we have to accept it.
Just because you work an office job, doesn’t mean you have to have an office job body. So if you are feeling tired or sluggish, and going to the gym is the last thing you want to do that day, just center yourself and imagine how much better you’ll feel if you choose to sweat and push yourself. I guarantee you won’t regret it.
5. Find Your Tribe
This last strategy is the final piece to finding and ensuring lasting success. As humans we are hard-wired to connect with others, it’s in our DNA. This applies in all ways, but especially in achieving workout goals and maintaining consistency. Anyone can workout for a few weeks, gyms are flooded January 1, but the tide soon fades because people feel that they are doing it all alone. If you don’t have a neighbor, family member or friend nearby, there are so many support avenues online. You found me after all!
Reach out, connect over similar stories and motivations, and watch how soon you hold yourself and others accountable–it’s the best addiction there is.
Life is messy and unpredictable, but if you make yourself a priority and develop these strategies, you are more likely to succeed in reaching your goals.