Six Ways I Stay Motivated

A lot of folks ask me how stay on track with my workouts and my food – when I am on track, that is. I don’t know about the rest of you, but focus has always been an issue with me. I need something a/visual, b/right in front of me, and c/offers just enough challenge to keep me interested.

For me, it’s about using a mix of offline and online solutions.

So, I’m the spirit of that, here’s what I use:

  1. A calendar. On my fridge. Every day I work out = a big x on the day. That row of x’s is massively motivating. You can’t miss it, and it’s a boost when you get to take that pen and cross off another day. You really do get to the point where you don’t want to skip because you don’t want to disrupt that lovely row of x’s
  2. BeachBody on Demand – all the workouts at my fingertips. I want to lift? I can do that? Dance? Yup. Stretch and centre? I can do that too. And I can work out anywhere I have an internet connection (or download workouts so I can’t use a crappy internet connection as an excuse). The best new addition to the app? An Instagram feed featuring other folks that have been doing BeachBody workouts. Seeing other people that are taking the fitness journey with you no matter where they are in the world is a boost. It makes you feel like you’re part of a community even when you’re in your living room doing yoga in your pyjamas (been there!)
  3. Nike Run Club – I have a marathon training plan designed for me on this app, and I’ve been using it for years. Three things I love: the training plans adapts to me. As I complete each run the app updates things like my goal pace for each of the scheduled runs. I also love the ability to look back over my history as a runner, and look at all the milestone badges I’ve earned. It makes me know I can do it, because I’ve done it before. Finally, the challenges tab allows me to compete against people around the world in challenges such as the one I’m currently doing: run at least 100 kilometres in August
  4. BeachBody Nutrition + and My Fitness Pal – I tend to alternate between these apps for a lot of reasons. The BeachBody app keeps my containers on track… BUT, the My Fitness Pal app has the slight advantage of tracking things like protein, carbs, macro- and micro-nutrients, as well as adjusting your recommended calorie intake for the day as you exercise. As a vegetarian and marathon runner, the My Fitness Pal app does have a slight advantage for me: I can easily adjust my food intake on heavier or lighter training weeks. That said, for those who aren’t supplementing their training with additional workouts, or those that like sticking strictly to their containers, the BeachBody Nutrition + app is perfect
  5. Facebook – I run my challenge groups through Facebook, and belong to the Facebook group my own coach runs. Not only is it hugely motivating to see others getting it done, challenge groups are massively supportive places to share struggles, cheer on the successes, and share everything from healthy recipes to where the best deals on workout gear can be found. Without my groups, and without the groups I run, it would be difficult to keep going sometimes
  6. I pay myself. I love new workout gear; I don’t love that I’m on a budget. So I pay myself for each workout I do. A dollar a workout. May not seem like much when you’re coveting a new pair of expensive running tights, but it certainly is motivating to feel fitter, AND watch your savings account balance grow

So there you have it. Six ways that I stay on track – a mix of online and offline approaches. It may seem like these things may take a lot of time, but it really doesn’t. I do take a bit of time each day to log my food intake, update my status in my challenge groups, and offer encouragement to others, but it’s not onerous at all. If anything, it’s exciting to be able to see that progress with the tap of a finger.

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