Sometimes life gets busy and we just stop making time for the goals we have set. Our nutrition goes out the window along with our workout plans. Before long you have lost sight of your goal or you realize that you haven’t done anything to work toward your goal. How do you get back on track or is it possible?
TIP: Need help with setting fitness goals? Here’s a great two-part article on Setting Fitness Goals.
When this happens, when we get off track, the negativity creeps in. You tell yourself you’re too far off to start over again. You question why it even matters and if it’s even worth it. You’ve let yourself down. You’ve failed. The truth is you haven’t failed, all you have done is backslid. It happens to all of us. It isn’t too late to get back on track, the goal is not void. You can still reach your goal.
A common quote comes to my mind every time that I am struggling with a goal or just struggling to get through a workout: “When you feel like quitting think about why you started.” Why did you start your fitness journey? I started mine for several reasons. I didn’t like the way I looked or felt, my health was an issue, honestly the list goes on and on. Every time I backslide or just feel like I am not making any progress I go to the quote and start listing my reasons for starting.
When you feel like quitting think about why you started.
Time management is also something that is hard to do, but so very important. Sometimes it is hard to make the time to workout or prepare our meals for the week. So what’s the solution? How do you combat this to keep it from happening as often? The answer is focus. Sitting around beating yourself up won’t help. But focusing on logical consequences and being mentally prepared for the next step, being about your goal, will. For example when you feel like cheating on healthy eating and taking the easy way out, think it out. Think about that unhealthy meal and weigh out the consequences of it. Think about how you feel after you eat an unhealthy meal.
My personal struggle has been with being an emotional eater. The more stress I was under or if I was upset I would turn to my favorite junk food and way too much of it. Then I would regret it, because it meant that I wrecked my diet. It was an unhealthy and damaging cycle that I had to break. I’m sure some of you have been down the same path. I had to find focus. It’s not always easy and it takes work, sometimes as much work mentally as you’ll physically put in on the treadmill or with your fitness instructor. But it’s worth it. I had to teach myself to take the emotions out at the gym, a walk, or some type of workout. I started focusing on pushing myself physically in a healthy way, getting my blood pumping and my endorphins going, instead of taking the emotions out with a bag of Oreo cookies. It gave me time to clear my head and put the problem aside for a while. Then I could come back to it with an open mind and find the solution.
Along with focus, to stay on or get back on track, we’ve get to take solid hold of motivation. This can be difficult. One way that I stay motivated is taking before and after pictures. Many people think that if you take before and after pictures that you have to post them for the world to see. That is not true. If you are not comfortable with letting people see them that is fine. It is okay for this to be a very private and personal thing. Keep them for yourself. You can post them in your house or keep them on your camera so when you are feeling defeated you can look back at them and see how far you have come. Pictures are the best way to see your changes.
Another great way to stay motivated is to have a good support system. As the old saying goes, there’s strength in numbers. Having a few friends who you can take along with you on your fitness journey can be invaluable. A good support system in your fitness life, like so many other areas in life, will become your lifeline in the most trying times. Your support system can be made up of friends, family, coworkers, or church members. People you know that you can count on for support and encouragement. That’s one thing I’ve always loved about the BTU coach led challenge groups, members become a fitness family. Everyone is there to cheer on and share the victories of each other. We’re there with encouragement for others and we all can find the guidance and help needed—even though we are not all at the same point on our individual journeys. The biggest part of a good support group is the loving accountability. With a good support group, you know someone will be there excited to see your progress and to give you the push you need, just like how you’ll be there for them.
That’s one thing I’ve always loved about the BTU coach led challenge groups, members become a fitness family.
Along with a support group, something many people find helpful to keep them out of a slump is a workout partner. Just like your support group, when you have a workout partner, you have someone there to keep you accountable and on track. When we know that other person is counting on us, it becomes that much more important to be there. It’s often fun and sometimes challenging to have someone right there in the mix with you whether you’re lifting weights, training for a marathon, or doing workout a video. And again, your workout partner doesn’t have to be on the same level as you are. It brings an entire new element to working out when you have someone there to help pull you up a level or to have someone there you can help bring up. Plus having someone to workout with is a good way to keep you from getting in a workout rut.
As life gets busy it is easy to throw in the towel and say, “I give up.” But, I encourage you not to do that. Get back on track, because you can—it’s never too late. It will take time, it won’t happen overnight and you will stumble, but that doesn’t mean that you have to give up. Everyone stumbles and even falls, just get back up and start taking steps to get back on track. Remember why you started, manage your time, and stay motivated. Don’t give up when it gets hard. Remember that YOU are WORTH IT!