You set your goals, you set your targets and you started on your new routine. It was going brilliantly for the first two weeks but now your motivation is waning. The excuses start creeping in, you are feeling tired, you want to eat chocolate every night and you think you have failed already.
The most common thing I see is people going out all guns blazing on January 1st and then it slowly fading off. But, all is not lost. Now is the time to reassess why you are finding your new routine hard to stick to. Were you just asking too much of yourself? Are you actually exhausted from trying to do too much?
So… Lets get that motivation back.
1.Make it work for you?
You can’t stand waking up at 5am to go to the gym, but you found going straight from work fit better into your routine. Instead of forcing going to the gym at a time you dislike, go at a time you do. Just because you could go 5 times before work and only 3 after work doesn’t mean you should. Going to the gym or working out consistently 3 times a week is far better than forcing yourself 5 times a week and ending up not going at all.
2. Block out your diary
I struggle to go to the gym (and its my job to) when I don’t block time out in my diary. I now know that at 6am every Wednesday I have training, I also go at 7.15am on a Friday and nothing stops me going because these are times that are now part of my routine.
3. Book a class or a PT session
Find a class you like doing. I have started going to Yoga every Tuesday at 12 because once I have paid, I have to go and it makes me stick to it. Find something you enjoy and book it in every week. Even better if you can go with a friend. If your budget allows, why not have a session with a PT once a week? You could share the cost with a friend or even get a programme made for you to follow.
4. Plan your sessions
Following on from the last point, plan your sessions. There is nothing better for motivation than seeing your time improve, your weights go up or you reach a move in yoga you never thought you would be able to. Either write your own plan of exercises you enjoy as a starting point or reach out to a PT for help.
5. Find a friend
Plan a session or two with someone else. I used to gym every morning with my friend Beth and I had the best routine i have ever had. We had the extra guilt of not letting the other one down which meant we went every single time we planned to go. Its easier when you know someone else is in it with you.
6. Don’t beat yourself up
If you miss a session because you were exhausted, do not beat yourself up. By being annoyed at yourself, your motivation will only go down because you view it as a fail. If I miss a session because I am tired, I actually use the time to rest as my body obviously needs it. Rest, recuperate and go to your next session refreshed and ready to work really hard.
7. Don’t wait for Monday
Why do we have to start on a Monday? Monday is no better than Tuesday or Friday. Start today. Whether that is making your plan or blocking out your diary, get started now. The longer you put it off, the less likely you are to start and we want your motivation to be the best it can be.
8. Have fun
Don’t want to run, don’t want to deadlift, don’t want to do yoga? Then don’t. Find something you do enjoy and start there. There is no point in torturing yourself with something you hate doing because you will end up losing motivation and giving up at the first hurdle. Try a few different things to start with if you are unsure about what you do and don’t like.
9. Remember there is no right or wrong
Just because your friend is training for a marathon or goes to Crossfit every night, doesn’t mean you have to. I personally can’t think of anything worse than training for a marathon and I tried Crossfit and didn’t enjoy it. So forget what you see in the media, forget what people around you are doing and find your right. You can only train for 20 mins 3 times a week? Then do it. You want to join a dance class because you love dancing? Do it.
10. Set achievable targets
If you want to lose 2 stone. Don’t just focus on your weight. Set a small weight target, for example losing half a stone within the first 2 months, but also set some non physical goals. Focus on squatting heavier or nailing a deadlift. It will make training far more fun and your motivation will be sky high.
So there are my top 10 tips to boost your motivation once the mid January blues hit. Don’t forget that everyone loses motivation from time to time and there is nothing wrong with that. Sometimes its your bodies way of telling you to reassess what you are doing and make it fun again.