Plot twist: You’re not going to be motivated. It is what it is. Personally, I am motivated about 10% of the time to workout & eat healthy. Of course I would rather be sleeping or eating cookie snacks or veg out watching HGTV. Who wouldn’t? “Well, Macy, how do you wake up at 5am every morning to workout? How do you choose to eat broccoli over cookie snacks?” Funny you ask, I’m going to tell you why I think one may view me as ‘motivated.’
Habit > Motivation
I really dove into what it looked like to live the fit life in college. I tried all kinds of workouts and eating plans. I figured out what I liked and what worked for my body. I had margin to do it in college… I mean, c’mon. College is awesome – so much extra time. This is where I established healthy habits. As I graduated college, life got busy, though my habits stayed the same.
It’s kind of like brushing your teeth.
My body has a habit of feeling the effects of exercise, similar to the feeling of brushing your teeth. You might be able to go one or two times without brushing them, but by day 3, you’re like “WOW I NEED TO BRUSH MY TEETH I’M DISGUSTING.”
Certain things trigger actions. For example, after I put on my jewelry, I go to the sink to brush my teeth. Putting on the jewelry triggers the thought ‘I need to brush my teeth.’
My trigger for exercise is my alarm. My habit is wake up, throw on Lululemon and either head to the gym or downstairs to get my workout in. It’s a part of my routine. I don’t even think about it anymore.
*Tip*: Put your workout clothes right beside your bed. Put them on before you even go to the bathroom. This starts the habit-making process.
How To Create New Habits:
They say it only takes 30 days of something to create a new habit. I disagree.
My advice is to set standards for yourself and be as UNFLINCHINGLY rigid as possible for 3 months. No matter what, you are going to do the hard things. Some examples could be:
- Wake up at 5am each day
- Workout 4 times a week in the morning
- Stay on your meal plan every meal except one meal a week. (NOT ONE ENTIRE CHEAT DAY)
- Drink 1 gallon of water each day
- Be asleep, not just in bed, by 10pm
“Macy…. you built all these habits in college when you had all the time in the world. I don’t have any time anymore. How am I supposed to start now?”
Here’s my answer to that:
If you want something, you have to work for it. I am so happy to walk people through this process of becoming the best version of themselves, but the hard work can only be done by one person: you
Misery is best with company. When beginning your health journey, there will be a learning curve – that’s a nice way of saying it. It will be tough! But God doesn’t want us to do hard things alone. He created us to do life with people.
I’ve pushed myself alone and I’ve had a group of people that I pushed myself with. People always win. I love being that person for those who don’t know where to begin.
Don’t rely on the New Year to get motivated. Having established habits and the mindset to do the right thing will keep you on track, not motivation.