When it comes to fat loss, it's not just about finding motivation for the initial weight reduction. It's also about maintaining motivation in the long term.
Motivation can come in many forms. What will work and won't work is up to the preferences and personality of the person who is training; however, finding something that does work will help fitness become a part of life permanently.
Be Specific With Exercise Goals
By constantly reassessing fitness goals, there is always something to aim towards and something to achieve. Without specific goals, there is rarely a sense of achievement, and training from week to week is likely to have very little direction.
Exercise goals can include trying to achieve a set number of exercise repetitions (30 crunches in a row), aiming to improve time or distance (five-kilometer run in less than 20 minutes), a cumulative task (complete a marathon over the course of one month) – anything that conforms to the SMARTER mnemonic.
Hit the Gym With a Fitness Buddy
Training in a large group environment, such as bootcamp-style training sessions and group fitness classes, can be extremely motivating. With many people working towards a similar goal, it can be more challenging and more fun.
Even finding a training partner or personal trainer is a great way of staying on track. Being accountable to someone else may prevent the excuses setting in when time gets tough, and motivation dwindles.
Revamp the Workout Music Playlist
For the last two decades, sports psychologist Dr. Costas Karageorghis (from Britain's Brunel University) has been researching the effect of music when it comes to sports and exercise.
Selecting workout music of a similar tempo to the exercise pace may help increase efficiency during an exercise session. Benefits may include increased endurance due to distraction, more enjoyment from training, and faster performance.
Find Some Inspiration
This is limited only by the imagination. Inspiration may be writing down a list of reasons why exercise is important. It could be several motivational pictures of people who have achieved weight loss, fit athletes, and focused sports professionals. It may be a recent photograph that changed the self-image.
Whatever method is chosen, inspiration comes down to personal reasons for training.
Exercise Should be Fun
Nobody likes to do things that aren't fun, and that's usually the case when it comes to exercise. Whether it's working out at the gym, training outside, taking up an individual sport, or playing a team sport, there are many activities that will achieve fat loss and weight management.
Gym alternatives include dancing, ice skating, martial arts, rollerblading, skiing, swimming, rock climbing, and dog walking. If exercise becomes boring, it's time to change the routine.
Acknowledge Weight Loss Achievements
It takes a lot of sweat and hard work to lose weight, so when goals are achieved, it's important to acknowledge the effort that's been put in.
If there is a lot of difference between the current weight and eventual goal weight, it's a good idea to break that key goal into smaller, more achievable goals of no more than five kilograms. Plan for small rewards at each mini-goal (like a facial or massage) and a big reward for the final goal (such as a holiday or new exercise clothes and shoes).