Top 20 Tips for Staying Motivated
1. Make a list of the reasons why you are choosing your health happiness journey.
i.e.: To have more energy, to sleep better, to lose weight, to decrease your health risks, to cure your diabetes diagnosis, to enjoy life, to buy new clothes in a smaller size, to fit on amusement park rides or to be able to play with your children again. Whatever your reasons are; they are IMPORTANT! Post them on your refrigerator, on yo ur bathroom mirror or somewhere where you can see them every day to motivate, inspire and to keep you on track to your health happiness journey!
2. Write or print out from your computer motivational quotes to yourself.
Post the notes where you can see them every day. A sticky note on your desk at work, a note in your lunch tote, or make a collage and post them daily and hang it on your wall. (I have made a collage and have it hanging in my kitchen with an assortment of inspirational quotes, pictures and anecdotes). I look at it every day for inspiration, motivation, hope and reminders of why I am on this journey to begin with!
3. Buy one smaller sized outfit you saw in a store and loved.
Hang it some place where you can see it occasionally an ! d be inspired to reach your goal size to wear it! Remember approximately 10 pounds in weight loss = one dress size smaller! You are on your way!
4. Start exercising not just for weight loss, but to get your body moving!
Don’t be a couch potato! Your hands and arms can do so much more than just holding a remote, and your legs will thank you for any movement you can give them. Start out with 5-minute increments and work yourself up to a time you feel comfortable with. Remember slow and steady gets you started and fast and ready keeps you going!
5. Make your own healthy snack station “just for you”.
Designate an area in the refrigerator or cabinet that is just for you and your own healthy snacks. Put labels on them with your name, and a warning to others who may take them on you! Hands-off - make a list of what is yours and “yours only”. I make up my own snacks and keep them in my designated areas at the beginning of each week for an easy grab n go healthy snack choice to bring with me every day. It also keeps me from grabbing unhealthy choices! When you are counting your calories each day, this is a must have chore to do for yourself to keep you on track!
6. Reward Yourself!
Treat yourself to something new when you reach a weight loss of 5lbs off or more. (Or even for 1 pound – remember what a pound of butter looks like!). Maybe getting a manicure or pedicure is right up your alley, or spending an afternoon with a friend, or just a quiet day to yourself! Think of something you have never done before but would like to see or do and treat yourself for your successes! You deserve it!
7. Stand up and walk around your desk or office at work throughout the day.
Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Go to the bathroom the furthest one away from your office. Go outside for lunch and walk around your building, or parking lot. Breathe in the fresh air – it does a body good! Or just stand up every few minutes or so and stretch those muscles and brain! You will feel so rejuvenated and ready to take on your work day, or to get through the long afternoon.
8. Record your favorite music playlist on your music devices.
Listen to your favorite songs while you work out to motivate you to get your body moving. Listen to your favorite songs in your car to put you in good spirits to start your day on your way into work, or to relax you on your way home from work. Put those headphones on and listen to your favorite music during the day to block out any stress you may be enduring. Even listening to soothing sounds or a motivational speaker will put you in your happy place and keep you there!
9. Chew Gum, take a breath mint or strip, or take a slug of mouthwash.
After a meal to curb your sweet tooth or appetite is the best time to take a hit! Keep a toothbrush and toothpaste or mouthwash in your drawer at work to refresh yourself and curb off those cravings! At home, keep chewing gum or breath mints on your kitchen counter to grab after a meal. Or brush your teeth. Works for me!
10. Spruce up your ordinary drinking water!
If you have city tap water, like I do, sprucing up the taste of the water is a necessity to keep me hydrated and wanting to drink throughout the day! I make myself (two) 32 oz. jugs of lemon water every day. I add one fresh lemon with agave sweetener and water to my 32oz. container twice a day for a nice refreshing water treat to keep me hydrated daily. You can add any fruit you like to mix it up a bit and keep you in the habit of drinking water every day. Your body will Thank You and love you for it!
11. If you like to exercise at home, like I do, keep your exercise equipment in plain sight.
I keep my weights I use for my arms on my living room floor by the coffee table. And because I don’t have a separate exercise room, I keep my stationary bike right in my living room to use every day while listening to my favorite tunes or watching a favorite TV program. My family is encouraged to use this equipment also. And my company doesn’t mind either! My bike is sometimes used as extra seating, and before long, my friends are peddling away while visiting! Talk about getting everyone in on the fitness kick!
12. It’s always “buffet” style for our meals at home, except for the occasional holiday.
Keeping the meal in the kitchen away from the dining room table, keeps me focused and not tempted to go back for a second helping. Being mindful in my portion control and serving myself just want I need, helps me avoid unnecessary temptations to go grab more. Eating slowly, and mindfully keeps me satisfied and gives my brain enough time to catch up with my stomach signals that I am full. Keep in mind the portion control plate sizing. (picture below for reference) When you are first starting your health happiness journey, it is useful to keep a picture of this portion plate graphic on your refrigerator to be a handy and useful guide to keeping you on track with what your portion sizes should look like. After a while it will become second nature to you, and you won’t need any reminders! (Remember – out of sight out of mind!)
13. Stretch while watching TV.
Get up during those pesky commercials and move that body! Walk up and down your stairs, or walk around your room, do a handful of jumping jacks, or use your weights! During a normal program, you can have at least 10 to 15 minutes of commercials! Just think, during that time you already did some of your daily exercising and you didn’t even think about it!
14. Keep your bathing suit or special summer dress that you want to be able to fit into on display.
We tend to eat more and exercise less during the winter months, so having a favorite bathing suit or dress on display gives us that incentive to be inspired to stay on track during the winter. Just looking at that bathing suit keeps me dreaming and excited about the warmer months coming and gives me motivation to keep going on my health happiness journey and getting that weight off!
15. Make and keep a “reward jar or reward box” for yourself or family.
Take a small jar or a box and decorate it with motivational quotes and pictures to keep as your own “reward” vessel. For each pound you lose, add $1.00 or whatever you feel comfortable with to the jar. When you reach whatever milestone goal you set for yourself, treat yourself to something nice just for you! (A new lipstick or scarf perhaps?) Or you can make it a “family” jar or box. Have your family put in little notes of things you can all do together or places you can go as a family for each goal you reach! You will get the encouragement you need, and they will get the incentive to help you reach your goals! It’s a “WIN-WIN” for everyone!
16. Download a weight-loss/fitness tracker App or program.
I use “my fitness pal” created by Under-Armour for tracking my daily caloric and nutrients intake and for keeping track of my daily exercise I am doing. There are other apps and programs you can find to use of course, but I like my fitness pal, it works well for me and my lifestyle. I log in everyday what I eat during the day and my daily exercise. It keeps track of the calories and nutrients I am eating every day and gives me the number of calories I am burning with my exercises each day. It keeps me on track with my weight loss, my goals, and exercising. It will even tell me what I would weigh in a week if I ate the same calories each week. You can also put in a recipe link, and it calculates the calories and nutrients per serving for you. Whatever tracker you find for yourself, remember to be consistent and log-in every day. Of course, you can do “old-fashioned” journaling as well. Whatever tool you use, consistency and effort are the key to success!
17. Change your Environment when you are stressed or bored out of your mind.
It is so important when you are stressed out or bored during the day, to recognize this and choose a distraction. Listen to music, go for a walk, or chat with a friend to distract yourself from over-eating or grabbing that unhealthy snack. Remember, you can’t eat just one potato chip when you are distressed or bored, you will most likely want to eat the whole bag! Find what distraction works the best to help you relax and “de-stress”. Remove yourself from the situation you are in that is causing you stress or boredom. Go to another room in your house (not the kitchen!) bring a book and read or phone your friend and get yourself distracted! Take a walk around your office. Turn on your “Amazon Dot”, or music device and blare out that music! I turn on my 70’s,80’s and 90’s music no matter what room I am in and get down to the music! Dancing is a plus, it distracts your mind and gives you some more movement of your body during the day! If you want to sing along – go for it! Remember - “Music is the Soul Food Fest for your mind”!
18. Plan your meals for the week.
At the beginning of every week, before you go grocery shopping, plan your meals for the week. You can relax during the week, and not have to worry about what to fix if they are planned out ahead of time. Your grocery list will be so much easier to create when you know what you want to put on it! You will have made healthy choices for your meals for you and your family, and you will stay on track with your weight loss. **hint** Create your shopping list based on the store that you do most of your shopping in. Divide and conquer your list into the sections of the store where the items are located. You will be in and out of the store in no time flat! Your shopping experience won’t feel so much like a chore, but an adventure! Divey up your list to your shopping companions and make your time in the store that much less!
19. Keep the “Good Stuff” in plain sight. (First in Sight, First in Mouth)!
If you keep your good healthy snacks out in plain sight, you will more likely grab for the good stuff versus the unhealthy snacks! Keep your fruit in a bowl on your counter (be mind ful of their freshness) so that you see them right away. If you like them chilled, then keep them in the front on your shelf in the refrigerator. Keep your healthy snacks (nuts, protein bars, veggie snacks) in a basket or bowl on your counter or in front o f the cabinet you are into the most. If you can see them right away, you will grab them first! Remember First in Sight, First in Mouth! And my last tip, but certainly not the least:
20. Make your Mental Health your top priority!
Getting and keeping your “Mind” fit and healthy is the key to keeping your whole body and spirit in line while you are on your health happiness journey. Your journey starts from the top and works its way down through your body. You need to have your mind in the right place to start with. The rest of your body will follow suit towards achieving and keeping your health and fitness goals as soon as your mind is healed and ready to go! Meditation and relaxation are great tools to achieve your inspiration. Yoga is one of great tools to help you relax and keep your mind focused. those Once you have reached your mind health happiness, the rest of your body will fall right in line, and you will have lifetime results you can keep and easily maintain for the rest of your future.