It can be hard to stay motivated when on a health and fitness journey. So, I thought it would be helpful to give my 8 best tips to reach your fitness goals.
These are the ones I’ve found work for me, so I hope they’re helpful for you too.
1. Don’t wait for motivation to kick in!
I used to think you had to feel motivated before you could take action on your health and fitness goals.
However, I read a blog post a few years’ ago which said you have to take action first and the motivation will follow.
At the time I read this I thought it was a load of rubbish. Now, years later, I realise it was right!
I don’t spring out of bed every morning excited to train. Some mornings I drag myself out of bed, bleary-eyed, wishing I could just sleep.
But, once I’ve started my training I quickly get into it. By the time I finish I’m fired up and glad I got it done, which motivates me for the next day!
2. Get clear on your fitness goal
Do you want to lose fat, put on muscle, or maintain weight?
Do you want to increase your cardiovascular health? Do you want to get stronger?
If you get clear on your fitness goal this will help you plan the steps you need to take to work towards the goal.
3. Find an exercise you like doing
Some people might start an exercise regime because it’s the latest fad, or because other people tell them they should do it.
However, you’re more likely to stick to a routine if it’s something you like and enjoy.
Before I found weight lifting I used to do a lot of running. It’s not something I enjoy anymore, so there’s no point in forcing myself to do it.
I won’t sustain it and I’d come to resent it.
4. Exercise at a time that suits you
Lots of people have their opinions about the best time to exercise. Some say early morning before breakfast is best. Others say later in the day.
In fact, the best time to exercise is the one that works for you!
Again, it comes down to sustainability. You’re more likely to sustain your exercise regime if you’re doing at times which work for you.
I’ve trained early in the morning for the past five years because it works for me. I know that I don’t have the motivation to train when I get home from work.
I just want to watch stuff on YouTube and do my blog!
5. Track your calories and macros
If you have a goal weight, then tracking your calories and macros can help increase the likelihood of you reaching it.
Some people can eyeball portion sizes and have a rough idea of what they’re eating at each meal.
However, because of my disordered eating I just can’t eyeball portion sizes. It causes me anxiety to try to guess the food on my plate.
Tracking my calories and macros helps me ensure I’m getting what I need in my diet. It helped me reach my goals during my fat loss journey.
I use MyFitnessPal as I find it easy to use, but there are other fitness apps out there.
For some people, tracking their calories is triggering. If this is you, then don’t feel you have to track your calories and macros.
There are tools which help you estimate the recommended portion sizes of the foods you eat. The fitness YouTuber Athlean-X has this great video on the subject.
6. Meal prep and batch cook meals
I prep my lunches for the week ahead each Sunday. My husband and I also batch-cook meals that we have for dinner during the week.
Prepping these meals means we’re more likely to have nutrient-dense meals and less likely to resort to getting takeaways if we get home and can’t be bothered cooking!
I’m all about making life easy for myself.
If you make time to meal prep it’s far easier to stick to your nutrition plan and help you reach your health and fitness goals.
7. Don’t restrict the foods you eat
There are some diets, like Keto and Intermittent Fasting (IF), that people find work for them.
Due to my disordered eating history I feel these diets would be triggering for me in terms of the food restrictions I’d be under. So, I personally wouldn’t use them. I stick to a diet where I don’t restrict what I eat, but am mindful of what I eat.
The bottom line is you have to do what works for you. If Keto and IF aren’t for you, then don’t feel you have to do them.
I find that following the 80/20 rule works well.
Have 80% of your diet be made up of nutrient-dense foods. The remaining 20% then comes from less nutrient-dense foods. These are foods like chocolate, cookies, and crisps. The naughty stuff 😉
8. Don’t compare yourself to others
Social media is a double-edged sword when it comes to how to reach your fitness goals.
Some people find it motivates them to keep going, whilst others might feel they’re not doing enough.
Remember, a lot of what you see online has been digitally altered. Not everyone looks as good as their photos!
Some influencers aren’t necessarily honest about how they keep fit either. Some promote BS products which promise you quick results, but are useless.
There are no quick fixes in fitness.
It comes down to hard work and consistency. That might not be what you want to hear, but it’s true.
If you’re clear on your goals and you’re consistent, you will reach your fitness goals.
Try not to get distracted by all the white noise along the way 🙂
I hope this post has given you some useful tips to reach your fitness goals. Do you have any tips not listed here?
Let me know in the comments!
Welcome! I’m a Psychologist and fitness enthusiast. My passion is supporting people with their health and wellbeing, and inspiring them to pursue the things they love doing. Please contact me at email@example.com if you have any questions or want to collaborate!