As registered dietitians and personal trainers, when new clients come to us, they often tell us that they struggle with motivation. When we dig in deeper, we frequently find that they have all-or-none beliefs about losing weight (or getting healthy)– like they can’t eat carbs or sweets, or other foods they enjoy most! We get it, who can get motivated to take away fun? NOT US! We’re sharing why going hard-core doesn’t get you results & easy tips that make motivation a non-issue so you can get the ball rolling AND get results.
Why does going hard-core not get you results when you’re struggling with motivation?
Just because you’ve personally seen (or watched your friends experience) success doing something hard-core, it doesn’t mean that’s the ONLY way to get results. Believing that to be true is typically the VERY REASON you can’t get motivated AND why you (or they) no longer see those results that were once achieved! Achieving success in a way that is overly strict (ie, no carbs) isn’t sustainable & takes the fun out of life. You’re WAY too much fun to live your life that way–that’s why it’s hard for you to get motivated to live like that!
As registered dietitians we’ve witnessed scores of disappointed people coming to us feeling badly about themselves because they either were able to get result in the past following some kind of super strict plan, or they watch other people doing it and just aren’t sure why they can’t “get it together” to get back on that horse again or live the way someone else can. They’re desperate for results and don’t understand why they can’t get motivated when they really want to see their body change.
Can you relate to Jessica, our new client?
Her story is similar to ones we hear ALL of the time.
Jessica came to us feeling really depressed and couldn’t figure out what was wrong with her. She said a few years ago, she started following a keto diet, and she had followed other pretty hard-core diets that were similar in the past. Back then, she’d wake up, prep her keto meals for the day and would follow that diet to a tee. But now, she’s trying to do it again and although she occasionally starts off with a “good” day (as she puts it—which to her means not eating any carbs), by snack time, she feels unmotivated and like she has no will power. She said she “caves to a cookie or to another sweet.”
She was beating herself up about it.
We had asked Jessica why she stopped following the Keto diet when she was seeing success on it. She explained after following the diet for a while, she really wanted to have a slice of pizza with her friends, and so she did. She said she had wanted to go out to dinner with her boyfriend and not worry about “all the rules,” and so she finally just went and ate with him. And little by little she said that she just wasn’t really following it anymore. She said she really liked and missed some of the foods that she hadn’t had for so long.
“Jessica, do you mean you wanted to be able to enjoy some of the foods that you love and also enjoy some of the foods that your friends and boyfriend were eating?”
“Yeah,” she answered.
“And now you’re at a place in your life where you feel bad and like you’re a failure because you can’t get motivated to cut out the foods that you love and also because you want to hang out with people that you love… and eat with them?”
Jessica said, “yes…”
Then we told her THE TRUTH…
We, the identical twin registered dietitian nutritionists and personal trainers she saw before her, couldn’t get motivated to do that either–and we do this healthy lifestyle thing for a living!
HERE’S THE THING, if you have to rely on motivation to get results, those results are never going to last. We can’t all expect ourselves to get motivated every day of our lives.
“The secret to sustainable weight loss is removing motivation from the equation by making small, do-able changes that feel easy & that get REAL results.”
A side note—in addition to Jessica struggling and trying to get motivated to avoid foods she likes, additionally, Jessica was feeling unmotivated and caving in to snacks in the afternoon– ones that weren’t “allowed” on her no-carb diet. She cut out all carbs during her keto diet, and carbs are the fuel for her brain, and it resulted in her needing a quick pick-me-up. The quickest boost you can get, comes from sugar. Therefore, her brain wanting energy and telling her to eat the cookie, was also making her level of motivation feel even more difficult!
How can you lose weight when you’re struggling with motivation?
There are many ways to lose weight & to get healthy. Your level of motivation becomes a non-issue if you approach your goal in a more reasonable way. Simply making small, realistic changes (like any of the ones we share below) and getting the ball rolling is the key. Any method that’s sustainable should be doable & include foods that you like.
Any method that’s sustainable should be doable & include foods that you like.
These effective tips (below) can help you to lose weight & to reap health benefits.
They’re small, do-able steps that won’t require you to muster up motivation to make positive changes.
1) Start your day with 12 ounces of this Pineapple Lemon Ginger “Detox” Drink & sip it throughout the day.
You won’t mistake your thirst for hunger. You’ll eat less & get a boost of antioxidants.
2) Keep our “apple pie” on hand to satisfy sweet cravings. You’ll save calories & fend off inflammation. The SECRET is naturally sweet CINNAMON.
Cinnamon helps to lower blood sugar, is packed with antioxidants & is calorie-free. Swap out sugar for cinnamon in coffee, yogurt, cereal, etc.
3) Eat ¾ less of your meal and enjoy it with a serving of our delicious Easy Sauteed Greens. You’ll fill up on fiber, nutrients & antioxidants while seamlessly slashing calories.
Keep these greens in a large batch (either the cheesy or traditional style)! in the fridge so they’re always on hand.
What are other ways to get the ball rolling that aren’t so daunting that they crush motivation?
These changes below will get you results if they apply to you. Please let us know in the comments how they work for you!
– Eat only from a plated portion rather than straight from bag.
– Before you indulge, drink this pacifying tea.
– Measure peanut butter rather than eating from the jar.
– Try our Most Satisfying Weight Loss Breakfast.
– Swap your Starbucks latte for our Skinny Matcha Latte.
– Start your meal with veggie crudite, see if you eat less other stuff.
– Take a breather ½ way through your meal for 10 minutes, then decide if you want more food.
– Eat only when sitting down.
Our client’s achieve sustainable weight loss by taking a number of small steps (similar to these) that work in their lifestyle.
If you’re struggling with motivation or relying on willpower to get the weight loss (or health) results you want…
you don’t have to! We can help!