Over the last few years I’ve found myself in many situations where people have asked for my advice. It’s usually running or fitness related, but sometimes it’s a question as simple as, “how do you stay motivated?”
I’ve compiled a list of how I’ve stayed motivated, how one becomes motivated to begin with, and how YOU (and me!) turn motivation into success. This list isn’t all-inclusive, and it’s not running specific either. Feel free to use some (or all) of these points in your day-to-day life.
9 Tips to Stay Motivated and Be Successful
1. Define your goals.
Defining your goals can be as simple as, “I want to run a 5K” to “I want to lose 5 lbs.” And you can change those sentences around, too. Maybe you want to gain 5 lbs. Or maybe you want to get to work earlier because you’re generally late. Whatever the case may be, you can only be as successful as your goals allow. If you have no goals, you won’t be successful. Define your goals and move on to step 2.
2. Make an executable action plan.
Now that you’ve defined your goals, it’s important to flush out how you’re going to achieve them. Simply stating you want to run a 5K will not allow you to do so if you’ve never run before. You’ll want to start slowly, and make small improvements over time. If your goals are too lofty or your action plan is too enthusiastic, you won’t succeed. Make your plan realistic so you can achieve your goals!
3. Seek out advice.
Wanting to learn how to lift weights but don’t know how to do it? Sign up at your local gym and learn from the pros. Want to start running? Hire a coach or seek out a friend who runs. There are professionals for a reason — use them.
4. Find a routine that works for you and stick to it.
If you’re not a morning person, chances are you won’t be a morning person when it comes to fitness and training. Don’t try to change who you are just to fit in a schedule. My running schedule doesn’t always work out with my friend’s, and I’m okay with that. If you’re an evening person, schedule your runs for the evening hours. But if you like to wake up and hit the ground running, you’re probably better off going in the morning. (The caveat to this is that there’s research that suggests one is more likely to stick to a workout/training plan if it’s done first thing in the morning. Because you know, then life can’t get in the way… Food for thought.)
5. Get enough sleep and eat properly.
Sleep and nutrition are pivotal for success in any workout regimen. If you’re not sleeping and you eat garbage all day, you shouldn’t expect to be successful. Not only will you not feel your best, your hard work can actually be reversed if you consume less-than-desirable food and when you don’t sleep enough.
6. Recognize and accept failure, but learn from it to make progress.
Everyone has setbacks in their life. We get tired, overworked or overexerted, sometimes injured. And that’s okay. Or sometimes if we have a weight goal in mind, we don’t hit the weight we expected. It’s all good. Accept it, learn from it, and move forward.
7. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t.
Do I need to elaborate on this one?
“The only one who can tell you you can’t is you. And you don’t have to listen.”
8. Avoid injury by making smart decisions.
If you’re pushing a hard workout and you feel tired or lethargic, dial it back. Make the workout less strenuous or — god forbid — take an extra rest day! Your mind, body, and soul will appreciate the extra TLC. In doing so, you’ll hopefully avoid injury.
9. Enjoy the ride.
Some days it will be tough to “enjoy the ride.” But through all the hard work, sweat, and possibly tears, you’ll see results. You’ll get faster, you’ll get stronger, you’ll get leaner. Whatever your original goal was, you’ll see the results with the hard work you put in. Don’t give up, and remember, if it’s not fun it’s not worth doing.
Hope this helps some of you take a step in the right direction. I’m here to help! If you have any questions or comments, holla!
Stay fit, friends.
TALK TO ME!
How do YOU stay motivated?