Use imagery and positive self-talk to help you visualize your goals. If you see yourself getting back to the gym, you are more likely to do it.
You will also feel like less time has elapsed when you do get back out there because your mind will still be engaged in the aspects of planning and anticipating a lasting fitness routine, said Sari Shepphird, a sport and high performance psychologist in Calabasas, California.
Find your favorite classes on YouTube or another subscription service. Instead of buying fancy meal-planning notebooks, try tracking what you eat on an app.
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Grab a Workout Buddy
Your workout buddy doesn’t have to have the same goals you do. Ideally, your buddy will just want to meet you at the gym or have a healthy meal out with you so that your goals don’t feel like they are adding limitations.
If you don’t have a friend who wants to join you on your workout adventure, enlist the help of a personal trainer who can get you started.
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Eradicate “All or Nothing” Thinking
There are moments that are going to challenge your goals — catered work lunches, last-minute projects that keep you from the gym, or familial obligations. Work around them instead of using them as an excuse to blow your diet or workout plan for the whole day.
Choose the healthiest options at your catered lunch and remember that missing one workout doesn’t give you permission to skip the whole week.
If your family plans are flexible, consider an option that will get the whole family moving.
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Add in Different Types of Exercise
In the beginning, you may focus on lifting weights and light cardio. As you progress toward your goal, you may want to add in classes, team sports, or warrior runs to make working out more enjoyable.
“Mixing things up is a great way to find yourself staying true to your overall goals while giving your body and mind a greater sense of flexibility and variety,” said Shepphird.
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As soon as possible spend some time imagining that your goal has already been achieved. By picturing what you’ll feel like then — stronger, leaner, more flexible, or able to complete tasks that you haven’t been able to in the past — you’ll be more motivated to do what’s necessary to achieve your goal.
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Celebrate the Wins
It’s important to realize that you are making improvements each time you work out or choose to eat healthy foods.
Congratulate yourself for getting through the last rep at the gym (or, if it’s been a long week, to the gym at all). Each little fist pump, “Atta boy”, or positive thought gives you an extra hit of dopamine that will reinforce that new-healthier-you neuropathway track, according to Sara Wegwitz a performance coach at Tailor Making Health.