Discover what's new & improved in the MyFitnessPal app!
We’re dedicated to helping you achieve your health and nutrition goals. And our newest features and updates? They do just that. Learn how we're making tracking your progress easier, faster, and more motivating than ever.

Staying motivated

petiteerica Posts: 4 Member
How do you stay motivated? I have tried calorie counting, working out regularly, portion watching, changing my diet and I just cannot figure out that is going to work for me after many months.

What keeps you motivated?


  • sijomial
    sijomial Posts: 19,809 Member
    Motivated to do what?
    To achieve what?
    What does "work" mean?

    What exactly is/are your goals? Without that clarity of knowing what you are trying to achieve not sure how anyone can help.

    But would suggest having a serious and clear think about what you need to do, what you want to do and then maybe the how to get there will become clearer.
    You can use this thread to bounce ideas about of course or a partner/friend but get that partner/friend to keep asking why. (When you get to the end of the whys your real goal might emerge or at least evolve.)
  • IAmTheGlue
    IAmTheGlue Posts: 701 Member
    I’m here 100% for my health. I’m not trying to look cute in a swimsuit, I’m purely trying to survive. So, my decisions can clearly be sorted into “Is this helping me reach my goal or not?”

    Motivation is fleeting. But that’s okay.. find out what works for you and rely on habit. You don’t need motivation to brush your teeth for example. You just do it as a habit you have been building since you were a little baby. I think a lot of people come here and change too much, too soon and fall off the wagon. Look for sustainable, forever, changes.

    I don’t know what that looks like for you, but for me, I have made small changes, that I can manage forever.Change one small thing and go from there. 💐
  • Xellercin
    Xellercin Posts: 924 Member
    That's the nice thing about making incremental, permanent changes. I don't need motivation to keep going. It's just my normal now.

    My initial motivation when I was obese was to take really, really good care of myself. I didn't care what weight I ended up, but I knew my best state or health wouldn't be obese.
  • Hollis300
    Hollis300 Posts: 59 Member
    I've struggled with this as well. There's nothing 'wrong' with you or uncommon about starting with a ton of motivation that is gone within 3 months. This can happen even if you are seeing progress along the way. It's important to look at times where you became discouraged and try to understand what happened so you can better identify and respond when you see yourself repeating a past trend.

    As an example, you may have a small setback from eating too much either because of a weekend celebration, vacation, or falling off on a binge. You get on the scale and see weight has gone up and will take two weeks just to get back to where you were. Then consciously or subconsciously say *kitten* it and keep going and doing more damage.

    Instead, if you can identify why the scale went up, what were the circumstances, what was your mindset, why didn't you stop, what could you have done differently, you'll be able to take control of your choices in the future. Most importantly, have self-compassion and accept that it has happened and that you may have some work to do getting back to where you were. Instead of focusing on the time it will take to get back to your lowest weight or NSV, realize how long it's taken you to get where you are and that you don't want two weeks to become three or more.

    In short:
    1) Accept the things you cannot change (past)
    2) Focus on the things you can (future)
    3) Develop the ability to determine which things are #1 or #2

    Motivation in this case is foregoing short-term or instant gratification for long-term results and happiness. Eating or binge watching shows is a short-term pleasure that leads to long-term costs. You can make working out and eating healthy a short-term reward, but generally speaking it is the harder short-term road to walk. So you must remind yourself daily why you are on it, why you chose to skip the drive through or head to they gym. No matter where you are today, you will be somewhere else in 1 year and that will be determined by the sum of choices made in each of the 365 days between now and then. They won't all directly contribute to your long-term goals so your motivation is to make the average as high as possible.

    The last thing I'd say is to spend time, however it works for you, processing that you are never going back to the "easy" or less disciplined path. Never means not now, not when you achieve your final goal, it means never. That doesn't mean you won't break your healthy habits from time to time, but means you fundamentally don't want to live your life that way. When you over eat or don't exercise, accept it as a choice you made but take time to tune in and be mindful about how it makes you feel. You may realize you feel sluggish, less sharp, maybe you have a stomach ache after eating too much sugar or feel less energized from skipping a workout. Tune into those feelings and you'll see the short-term "reward" actually came with more short-term cost then you had realized in the past.

    Great post.
  • Kiwi2mfp
    Kiwi2mfp Posts: 166 Member
    I'm not always motivated. This last week I have been working my butt off trying to help someone move. I have been watching my calories too. But it seems that the day I started helping my friend clean up to move, my weight loss stopped. While it might be water weight or muscle's still frustrating that the scale wouldn't budge! I lost motivation then. But that's when I acknowledged why I lost motivation and tell myself to suck it up, it will work in the long run, just keep at it and the pounds will start falling off again. This morning I got on the scale and my weight finally dropped by 1.2 pounds. It's been well over a week of no change at all (if any, the scale went up!). Motivation won't always get you to your have to push through even if you don't want to.
  • azuki84
    azuki84 Posts: 212 Member
    Motivation is the endorphins kicking in after an awesome strength workout, or even some nice and slow LISS. of course, not everyone will feel this.
  • happimess01
    happimess01 Posts: 9,072 Member
    I don't stay motivated. I build habits that carry me through when the motivation wanes. I've been really struggling lately and not wanting to go to the gym. But I've been going at least four times a week for over five years now and that habit prevails even when I don't have any motivation.

    I also have minimum goals, medium goals, and lofty goals for daily success. My minimum goals are getting to the gym 4 times a week and doing my compound lifts, at least 7,000 steps per day, and logging my food. Medium goals - adding in my accessory lifts, adding in focused cardio, and keeping calories under maintenance. Lofty goals are anything bigger than medium goals. Success is hitting minimum goals.

    You are so inspiring. Hope I can be like you one day. How long have you been logging your food now?
  • lornamarie57
    lornamarie57 Posts: 31 Member
    At first I started with lots of motivation. Now I'm 6 months in and have had a few challenges. The motivation is long gone but I try to recapture it by going on MFP or thinking about the reasons I started in the first place. Yes, lots has become habit but once you eat out of routine for a few days (I had to travel) then the cravings return and honestly it is a bit like restarting. I'm sitting at that restart right now. I didn't quit though. I'm holding onto that. Yes, I went up for few days and yes I logged over my goals for a few days but I did log and continue to work on my goals. Blips happen. Blips will happen again so recovery has to be part of the process too - that's self talk here lol. Just rambling now.

    Anyhow, motivation sometimes has to be recaptured. That's ok too :)
  • bobsburgersfan
    bobsburgersfan Posts: 6,383 Member
    Tallawah_ wrote: »
    All the above is true but ultimately at the risk of sounding pompous I don't believe motivation will get you there. It's self-discipline. You need to have the mindset that you will do whatever you have planned whether you feel like it or not! One tip I've found helpful (stolen from Graeme Obree) is I never decide whether to do a session from home. I go to the gym (or get on my bike) and START. If I still don't feel like it after 5 minutes then I go home.
    This is genius. I never regret a workout AFTER I do it, so once I'm doing it I wouldn't quit. Not to mention I do group classes, so there's no way I would walk out once I'm already there. :D

    Not sure I can add any new insight for the original poster, but feeling motivated comes and goes, so I agree with others that it comes down to determination and creating habits. I'm finally getting myself back on the wagon after a 1.5-year rough stretch where I had absolutely no motivation and felt like giving up. My habits took a hit, but none of them went away completely. (My tracking went down to less than 50%, but I didn't ever totally stop. My gym schedule went from 5-6 days a week down to 1-3, but I never quit. I allowed more junk food in my house, but still resisted a whole lot of it.) I've regained weight and I'm not happy with myself, but I know it would have been catastrophically worse if I hadn't developed those habits beforehand.
Do you Love MyFitnessPal? Have you crushed a goal or improved your life through better nutrition using MyFitnessPal?
Share your success and inspire others. Leave us a review on Apple Or Google Play stores!