Whether we want to lose that Thanksgiving and Christmas weight or gain more for that perfect body shape, sticking to the plan is the hardest to do. One minute, you are full of passion and excitement to start exercising and dieting. The next day, all the energy has dropped, and you’re back to your status quo. We have all been there, folks. Every psychologist, however, does not leave us without any advice and tips for this. “Sitting down and thinking about what you’re going to eat and why you intend to eat it means you’re not acting on immediacy and impulse, but controlled thought and positive intentions,” states psychologist Emma Kenny.
Get ready to bring back that energy and enthusiasm you had at the start of planning. Take note of these most effective ways to stay on track:
Make A Checklist
It is the most simple of the things that you should have first done at the thought of going back in shape. Take a notebook and a pen and start jotting down what you need to do.
Start listing down your main goal. Below that, break that main goal into small and doable ones that you can guarantee either weekly or monthly. On another page, list every little thing that you should do to achieve those smaller and manageable goals.
Make a daily or weekly checklist out of that scratch or outline. Most people feel good about having something to mark, cross out or check at the end of the day as an indication of having accomplished something. In the long run, this will help you stick with your plans. “Research shows that actually setting a specific goal makes us more likely to achieve the things we want, and is important especially when we want to make a change. The best news is that setting and striving for a goal, even if you don’t make it, will make you happier.” according to Will Meek Ph.D.
Take It Step-By-Step
Don’t feel envy to those fitness enthusiasts who do more than you can right now. Remember that you are just starting. Start with something light or small. Don’t push yourself to do something you are not accustomed to yet. This practice might even harm your body and eventually mess up with your primary goals.
Don’t force yourself to eat very little or completely nothing at all. “Why would anyone want to throw up, starve themselves, binge until they hurt, or feel tortured by food?” says Savvy Psychologist Ellen Hendriksen. This can be the onset of an eating disorder, which is a mental health issue. Don’t punish yourself just because you binge ate last night or missed a day of exercising. These are only small mistakes if you are going to stick with your plan religiously anyway.
Educate Yourself Of The Immediate Benefits
True enough, the progress may not even be evident at the first onset to execute our plans. Note that neither of these goals is achievable overnight. We know that it is sometimes hard to convince ourselves to push through if our eyes cannot see any significant difference at a considerable amount of time.
As a remedy to this problem, it is best to know the immediate benefits brought about by diet and exercise. Let’s focus on those benefits for a while so we will continue to find the daily motivation to what we do. It’s all about the mindset if you are going to look at it.
Schedule Them All
Part of the planning is the scheduling of these diet and exercise plans (see some recommendations here: momjuction.com). You may also schedule when cheat day will be and list all your possible healthy recoveries from that.
Take note of every exercise that you WILL do. List down all the food that you will and will not eat at some specific dates. It will also help you in tracking your progress.
Those Exercise Clothes May Do Wonders
Make it a habit to change from your work clothes to workout outfit after these official or school duties. It may create a mindset that you are indeed ready to do some exercise at the very moment. Plus, it is a motivating practice in itself. Imagine throwing those fitting exercise clothes on and sweating on it like a genuine fitness enthusiast.
Look Or Ask For Support
Find a buddy or a family member who shares the same workout and diet goals as you. He or she can act like a coach on times that you are feeling lazy to push further. This workout buddy will make your journey more exciting, making you stick more with your plan. Both of you may also plan rewards as soon as you finish your little or weekly goals.
Another tip, you may post these plan and workout pictures on social media, so you will find out how people are cheering for you. That itself is motivation and creates an obligation for you to reach your goal because people know it and expect of you already.
The key, aside from making each step doable, manageable, and accessible, is the proper mindset that you should have. As soon as you feel that the enthusiasm and commitment levels seem to drop, go back to the reasons why you started at all and follow the above tips this time.