That’s what I was thinking about today. It’s no secret that I’ve struggled with losing weight. I’ve had my share of ups and downs. My motivation tends to fizzle out for a couple of different reasons:
- Unrealistic expectations. I have my heart set on seeing the number on the scale drop, and when it doesn’t, feeling sorry for myself, I give up hope that I’ll ever succeed.
- Perfectionism. I mess up one time – ‘cheat’ on a diet, skip a workout – and again, give up, telling myself that I’ll never be able to reach my goals. The same chain reaction time after time.
I want to be a positive role model for my daughters. I want my husband to look at me again with *those* eyes. I want my grandma to be proud of me. I want to fit right in with my skinny mom friends. I want to impress my friends at my high school reunion.
See a pattern there? At the beginning of this year, I realized that I’ve been doing it all wrong. I’ve always made it about others, when it should be about ME. Those people may inspire me, but as far as motivation goes, I’m on my own. Self-motivation is what I’ve been lacking.
I proclaim 2011 the year of ME.
- I have goals. But – for once – they’re attainable. Not “look hot by BlogHer” or “fit into my skinny jeans by my high school reunion…” more like, walk 10,000 steps a day. Drink 8 glasses of water. Do 10 minutes of cardio. Sleep 8 hours a night.
- I’m focusing on what I can control. I can control what goes into my mouth. I can control how much I exercise. I can control how much I sleep. I can’t control how my body responds. Some weeks I’ll lose, some I’ll gain or stay the same, and I’ve come to terms with that. I can’t control what others think, and won’t let that affect me anymore.
- I’m rewarding myself. Yesterday, I took two hours to get a mani/pedi, and it felt good. So good. I’ve made a list of a few other rewards that I’ll work towards… a song download for Dance Central (Xbox Kinect game), a hot bubble bath, a new running skirt, etc. Not big rewards by any means. They’re small, meaningful things that I’ll do just for me.
Sleeping 8-9 hours a night for the past month, I feel amazing. I’m slowly building up to 10,000 steps a day… averaging about 8K this week (I got a cool new gadget called a Fitbit to track my progress!) I’m drinking tons of water, reaching for healthy food for energy, not comfort, and doing 10 minutes of cardio several times a day. Those brief bursts of activity are fun! Exciting even. I don’t need any special equipment to race Maya, my 6-year-old, up the hill after school, dance to 3 songs on Just Dance, or run up and down the basement stairs a few times. It’s all about moving more and eating less. Eating to live, not living to eat. Sounds so simple, right? It’s all finally making sense to me.
And I’ve lost 4 pounds. While that may not seem like much at a time when we’re expecting results a la Biggest Loser, it is a big number for me. It’s a big number because I wasn’t expecting it. I wasn’t stalking the scale for once. It just happened. My actions made it happen.
So what is the difference between inspiration and motivation? Inspiration moves you to do something, it seems, while motivation leads you to take action. I’ve never lacked inspiration, but for once, I have the motivation to go along with it!
What motivates you?
I wrote this post in the hopes of qualifying for Team 4all. 4all (www.4allbyjofit.com) is an innovative golf, tennis and fitness apparel company that specializes in creating high quality performance apparel for women. Stylish clothing that’s flattering and fits women of any size! The ten blogger brand ambassadors chosen will receive the latest 4all news and products and access to exclusive brand opportunities throughout the year. Wish me luck, and be sure to follow 4all on Facebook and Twitter to see who makes the cut!