A few people have asked me lately how I find my motivation or have said they wish they could find theirs. I have also had 2 sessions now with a personal trainer and during the 2nd session some time was spent discussing goals and motivation. This has made me think hard over the last week or so about how I motivate myself and why.
During my 2nd PT session we talked about my goals and barriers. My goals were to lose a bit of weight, get a lot fitter and get to a point where exercise is a natural part of my life. My barriers were childcare, work and I was really honest and said pure laziness. As horrible as it is to admit, I know I am a lazy person. Most of the time I would much rather be led on the sofa with a bag of crisps watching back to back episodes of my favourite TV show. I love lie-ins and could quite happily stay in bed all day. If there is a choice between housework and anything else I will chose anything else. It takes effort to get me to the gym and workout.
Kris gave me a really good tool to help with this laziness and to help with motivation so I thought I’d share with you (just in case anyone as lazy as me is reading this – you don’t even have to go to the gym to use this tool, you can just do it on the sofa!). He asked me to picture myself on a path, with 2 different routes in front of me and think about where I would be in a years’ time depending on which route I picked.
Route No1 is to continue what I have started over the past few months. To keep going to the gym at least 3 times a week, to keep eating healthily and cooking using ingredients rather than processed foods. How do you think you will feel in a year’s time if you continue to do this?
Route No2 is to do nothing. To choose the sofa instead of the gym, choose a takeaway over cooking a healthy meal, to stay the way I was before I started exercising and not make any changes. How do you think you’d feel in a year’s time?
Kris then asked which route I think would be the easiest route. I said route No2. In some ways it would be, it’s easier to do nothing, to not make any changes, to pretend you feel fine as you are because on a day to day basis you do feel fine. Until next time you’re in the changing rooms trying on dresses for your friend’s wedding, feeling like crap in all of them because you hate your body. Until next time you hate yourself for binge eating all the junk food in the cupboard, or even worse, your child’s Christmas chocolate when they are in bed (yes I did that!). Until next time you have to wear a bikini on holiday and don’t want to move from the sun lounger to the pool without getting fully dressed because you are ashamed of how your body looks.
Is it easy to feel like that? No, it’s really, really hard, and horrible to feel so low. Route No2 is not the easy route, it is the lazy route. Route No1 will not feel like the easy route at first, it probably will never be easy but it will become natural, it will become part of your life and the positive effect it will have on your mind and body will make life become that much easier.
This really made me think. In a year’s time I will be 30, if I don’t make these changes now I will be overweight, I will be unfit, I will be unhealthy, I will not be a good role model for my daughter, I will not be on the path to living a long healthy life, I will not be happy with myself and I will not be happy in life.
If I continue what I have started over the past few months I will change shape, I will build strength, I will be more confident, I will have more energy, I will meet my goals, I will be a positive role model for Mollie, I will be happy.
This really stayed with me during and after the session and up til now a week later. It will stay with me forever. We all have bad days. We all have times when life has been busy, we are tired, the kids have been playing up, your house is a mess, and you have tons of crap to do. But, if you don’t make these changes now, if you don’t dedicate some time during your week to doing a bit of exercise, to planning and cooking healthy meals, to making some changes, then in a year’s time you will still be unhappy with your body/weight/shape but it will be a year later and even harder to get off that sofa.
Of course this might not work for everyone. Everyone has different reasons for wanting to change and everyone has different ways of motivating themselves. I just wanted to share it with you as it really helped me make sense of why I am doing what I’m doing, why I have set the goals I have and how I will feel when I achieve them. This is my new motivation and I know that next time I feel like skipping that gym session to stay in bed I will think about the Tasha a year from now and how she will be so disappointed that I didn’t stick with what I started.
What motivates you in life? Do you need a push and a shove to get your bum to the gym or are you already motivated? Would love to hear from you in the comments!