What do you think the most common "goal" I hear from clients as a personal trainer? If you guessed, "lose weight," then, ding ding ding! You win! Often, there are other goals we discuss too, of course, but weight is usually the first one mentioned. While wanting to be leaner isn't a bad thing, people's weight is rarely something that will keep them motivated long enough to achieve success on their health and fitness journey.
When it comes to "weight," a person is usually referring to that number on the scale but what actually matters is the body's ratio of fat to muscle. Having too much or not enough fat on your body can certainly negatively affect your health, energy, and overall wellness. Keeping that ratio in a healthy range is definitely important, and tracking it is a helpful indicator of progress. However, if changing your fat/muscle ratio (most often just to change the way you look) is your ONLY motivator, your commitment is likely to waver once you get past that initial emotion that inspired you to want to make a change. For continued success and dedication to reaching your goals, it's crucial to be in touch with how GOOD exercise, eating healthy, and just making a positive change in your life makes you FEEL!
Internal motivators, such as enjoying the way you FEEL when you are healthier, are significantly more long-lasting than external ones like changing the way you look in a bathing suit. Eating healthy and exercising can change the way you feel simply because you are fueling your body right and making it stronger. For example, instead of the post-junk-food-drag and guilt you feel after eating sugary or processed foods, making healthy food choices will leave you feeling energized and proud. Good nutrition can literally effect your mood in a positive way. Who wouldn't want that?
And don't forget that exercise causes your brain to release those feel-good-hormones, endorphins! Sure, you may not love the workout while you're doing it, but afterwards, your brain is going to be pumped up and happy!
So, get in touch with that feeling of accomplishment after you complete a workout, especially when you really didn't want to do it!
Get in touch with that feeling of pride when you are able to do more push-ups than you could when you started!
Get in touch with that feeling of empowerment when you conquer a really challenging goal you set for yourself!
It's THOSE feelings that will keep you excited to continue on your journey! And who knows, you may even become obsessed with this new fitness life you're building!