Naively I thought that willpower is all you need to be consistent with exercise. Of course, this couldn’t be farther from the truth! There are external things, superficial maybe but no less motivating, that can help us keep our eyes on the ball. Lemme tell you a short story.
Not too long ago I hit an exercise wall and almost threw in the towel. I remember thinking, “why bother, I’ll just diet”. But of course that’s even sillier because I believe that weight loss is just a ‘side effect’ of exercise. The real benefits are much more than that. See this post for ideas.
So anyway, I was in a funk and I honestly thought that that was it. But isn’t it funny where motivation can suddenly come from? In my case, it started with a closet purge that I wrote about here. As I was being scrupulous about the whole process, I also did the same for my workout clothes. This left me with only a few items, but these few pieces fit me well and looked good mixed & matched together. I liked seeing myself in the mirror! This by itself gave me a kick in the right direction ⭐
But wait, fortunately, there’s more! Read on ~
⭐ Okay so #1 is, making sure to look good while at it. I’m no longer just throwing on what’s available. Now, I also have to look as though I’m starring on some mass produced exercise video. I swear my color combos have never looked so perfect! 😉
⭐ #2 is creating my own weekly workout program. I veered away from my purchased, structured program and took things into my own hands. I follow a split routine with 2 HIIT sessions per week and I mix things up with other videos instead of just sticking to my usual Fitness Blender and Jillian Michaels. Being the creator of my own weekly program has me invested on a whole new – and FUN – level.
⭐ #3 is pretending to be a workout coach/instructor. Yep! And I feel no shame whatsoever in admitting this. Now that I look spankin’, I imagine myself leading a class! It gives me more energy and makes me perform the moves better. Whatever works, right? 🙂
⭐ #4 is not eating all those carbs. This one for me is huge. I used to be into brown rice, bulgur, steel cut oats, quinoa, whole grain breads – as long as it was healthy carbs, I was having it. It took me a while to admit that the carbs, healthy though they were, were acting as appetite stimulants for me. My body was toning up, no doubt about it, but I couldn’t see any cut or definition in the mirror. This disappointed me and made working out feel like wasted time and effort.
I cut back on the carbs and immediately experienced some encouraging results.
Oh and, I also cut back on all that fruit. Mind you, I was no more surprised than you to learn that there is such a thing as “over-fruiting” yourself, and at the rate I was going, I qualified!
And that’s basically it! – dressing sassier, being the creator of my program, using my colorful imagination and modifying my intake. In the larger scheme of exercise motivation, these might just be icing on the cake. But it makes ALL the difference!