Fuel the Fire: How to Keep Going (When Your Motivation Sucks)
"Ugh. I have no motivation to move today."
"I don't get it. Last week I was so pumped up. Now I have no motivation."
"I was doing so well and I just lost all my motivation."
Sound familiar? We've all been through it. We've all had days where we feel unstoppable and days were tying our shoes feels like a chore. We've had weeks where we're killin' the nutrition game and weeks where we're eating strictly according to the See Food Diet (you see food, you eat it).
So, how do we keep going? How do we ensure we don't give up on our goals due to lack of motivation?
First, we understand that motivation is fleeting.
I don't care if you've been working out for a week or ten years, there are going to be days where you flat out don't feel like it.
Recognizing this is important. A lack of motivation doesn't mean this is never going to work for you. It doesn't mean you have no willpower. And it certainly doesn't mean it's time to throw in the towel.
Recognizing that motivation is fleeting reminds us that we can not rely on motivation alone.
The ultimate goal is to rely on habit.
When we get to a place where tracking our nutrition is just another part of our day, a place where we know we're going to work out 4 days a week so choosing to take a rest day is no big deal, we have the confidence to get right back on.
A habit takes time to build. We're literally rewiring our neural pathways until this new way of life is cemented in place.
So, how do we keep going when motivation is low and we're working to build habits?
If you choose to skip a workout, the world won't end. No one will love you less. An angel won't lose its wings.
Choosing to workout, choosing to eat for your goals is exactly that...a choice.
There's a reason you started this journey. That's your inspiration. That's your why. Use that to make a choice of what comes next.
On the days you flat out don't feel like, try this three-step process:
Breathe. Remind yourself there is no "should" or "have to." It's allllll choice.
Remind yourself of your inspiration, your why, the reason you started this journey
Weigh the pros and cons: If I skip this workout, how will I feel? If I choose to start-maybe even just begin with one exercise and decide from there if I'll continue to not-how will I feel? (Be sure to remind yourself that your brain is currently building a habit!)
If you decide to rest that day, move on. Remember, there's no "should" to this. You make the best choice for you that day and you keep on going.
If you decide to put in the work, celebrate yourself! You just took another step toward your why and a step toward building a habit.
Motivation will always come and go. We'll never achieve our goals if we sitting around waiting for it to show up.
Remembering why you started and giving yourself a choice are key to building lifelong, sustainable habits.