Top Five Ways to Stay Motivated

health and wellness “Surround yourself with those who challenge you, push you, and motivate you”
Motivation — it is something we all want to have, but something that can easily evade us! Motivation is like a muscle, and you need to practice strengthening it through a regular routine. Whatever your daily ritual is, make sure it encourages you to stay committed to your goals. Sounds easier said than done right? However, if you have a clear visualization of the specific things you are working toward you will be able to successfully ignite that motivation within to stay on track! Try using these five ways to stay motivated.
1.     Set specific and measureable goals for yourself
It is imperative to set specific goals stating exactly what you are going to do, how you will accomplish it, and when you will have it completed by. For example: “I will run/walk one mile 2-3 days per week.” “I will run/walk one mile 5 days per week.” “I will complete a 5k in 3 months.” Setting smaller goals that can be achieved over a short time period fill up your motivational think-tank and fuel your mind to drive forward!  
2.     Reward yourself (without food)
When adapting a healthy lifestyle that focuses on your nutrition development, you will want to focus on a reward system that treats you through something else other than food. Create a reward that focuses on your accomplishments that you have completed in order to meet your overall goal. For example: If you have determined you wanted to lose a specific amount of inches. Choose a pair of jeans or dress that you know will fit if you lose that particular amount. Of course this needs to be realistic and always done in a healthy way. You can also reward yourself with a day off from work for a spa day or massage.  
3.     Schedule workouts as your job
Put your workouts on your calendar and make them a priority! When you decide to engage in a fitness program, treat it as your job. You know you would never tell your boss that you are not going to attend a mandatory meeting, the same goes for your workouts! Schedule the time, press play, and get it done!

healthy food

4.     Focus on healthy eating habits & adding activity into daily routine
Focusing your mind on the positive choices you are making over the number on the scale is imperative to your success in achieving health and wellness. Building and maintaining a healthy lifestyle is not only attributed to your physical fitness, it is in your mental fitness as well. This means you are exercising your mind by making a conscious effort in celebrating the accomplishments you are making toward better health. For example, choosing fruit over fries or parking at the far end of your employee parking lot to get those extra steps into your day. These are all successes that you should acknowledge and honor in your journey toward better health.  
5.     Fitness is FUN
It can be difficult to train your mind into a new routine. In order to make this easier, choose something that is fun so you will enjoy and want to do it, rather than feeling obligated and miserable every time you think about it! You do not have to restrict yourself to a treadmill at the gym! Play basketball, try kick-boxing, or dancing. Change out your formal exercise from month to month in order to keep things fresh and interesting. We have all struggled to stay motivated when working toward a goal. It is human nature to lean toward what is easiest, thus making goal achieving hard but not impossible. The only way to keep and improve your motivation is to exercise that muscle and continue to practice the habits that contribute to your positive actions. Using these five tips and keeping a simple and routine plan will get you on the path to success.   Photos courtesy of: Take Back Your Health    

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