Maybe you don’t want to make a change, and the only reason you come to the gym is due to a friend or family member dragged you a long. If that’s the case then that’s cool… You need to WANT to make a change.
Motivation is a funny thing. It can drive us to complete tasks that we thought we could never, like hike up a mountain or win a competition. When motivation is low, it can lead to us feeling beat and just sitting on the couch or laying in bed all day.
In training and health though, I don’t believe you just ‘lose’ motivation – in my opinion you’ve just lost sight of your goal. You’re lacking clarity.
Now you can be heavily motivated and have no clarity on your goal. An example of this is the enthusiasm to lose weight at the start of the year when people join a gym. They’re motivated to lose weight and exercise so they start exercising. But chances are they lack clarity on their goal.
- A well thought out and structured training plan tailored to their goal
- realistic dietary changes and calorie targets
- the daily and weekly tasks they need to complete in order to garner success
What eventually happens is due to the sporadic and rather intense start, the individual suffers burn out and drops off from their enthusiastic attempt at a health change.
See, as human’s we’re motivated by two things which I’ve named: the Recognition and Results Framework. If you’re recognised for an achievement, your motivation improves. You’re belief in yourself to complete a task increases – we call this self-efficacy. If you’re seeing results, well that’s rather obvious – up goes the motivation adherence.
For example with my clients, I use a training software called Trainerize – at the end of each workout if they’ve achieved a new PB (personal best) a nice little notification at the end of the workout appears saying ‘Congratulations! (insert number) new PB(s) Today!’. That small piece of recognition of their hard work that session helps keep them motivated and adhering to their exercise program.
Results are acknowledged via the weights lifted, graphs, scales, photos, the list goes on.
But all of the above wouldn’t be possible if my clients didn’t have clarity on their goals. Clarity on what they needed to do on a daily and weekly level.
You need to know what to do on a daily and weekly level. Failure to do so will lead to you ‘flying blind’ or training with no focus. If you have daily and weekly tasks/goals to tick off, they add up and you can then apply the recognition/reward framework. For example you can set up a 30 day challenge. Every day complete 2-3 tasks that will help you move closer towards a long term goal.
Example: Drop 5kg in 8 weeks.
- Drink 2.5 litres of water daily
- Consume vegetables with every meal
- Stretch for 15 minutes every morning
- Train with weights 2 times a week for 45 minutes
- Perform cardiovascular training (cardio) 3 times a week for 45 minutes
- Every Sunday bulk prepare 2 healthy snacks for the new week
Complete the daily and weekly tasks for 30 days. Acknowledge that you’ve stuck with something for 30 days, pat yourself on the back, tell yourself that you can fucking do it if you put the work in and have some clarity.
Do it again for 8 weeks. You’ll start to see results; take photos, record your weight, track your strength – acknowledge your progress. Pat yourself on the back again.
Before I wrap it up,
Another aspect of motivation, beyond clarity that is important for you to address is complete honesty with yourself.
What are you trying to achieve? Why do you want to lose weight? Why do you need to lose 10kg?
Every guy between 18-50 likely wants to gain some muscle. But I assure you there are going to hundreds of different reasons why guys wants to pack on the mass. Some do it for aesthetic reasons, some do it to defend themselves from a bully at school whilst others may want to do it to reduce pain and strengthen joints and bones.
Be honest with yourself – makes no fucking sense lying about what you’re trying to achieve and why you want/need to.
Maybe you don’t want to make a change, and the only reason you come to the gym is due to a friend or family member dragged you a long. If that’s the case then that’s cool. Take your time and go through the above. You need to WANT to make a change.
Take home points.
- Create the desire to change
- Be completely honest with why and what you’re trying to change
- Plan and develop clarity with what you need to do
- Apply the recognition/result framework.
And fucking just kill it. Do not give up. Do not lose sight on why you started. Keep at it!