How to overcome lost motivation

Imagine if you walked into school on the first day of kindergarten and your teacher handed you an exam for calculus. Or maybe even algebra. What would happen? You’d fail, obviously.

The same thing happens with diet and exercise. You walk into a trap. One that is designed for most people to start and stop with limited success, regardless of the plan. Instead of receiving a foundation built to help you accept your lifestyle changes, you focus on “best exercises” and “superfoods.” Sounds great, but that’s not enough for most.

In working with clients on every goal from fat loss to muscle gain, one of the most common weaknesses has become too loud to ignore. The situation plays out like this:

Step 1: You start a plan, feel excited, and dive in with extreme compliance.

Step 2: Eventually (usually around the 4-week mark), you’ve suddenly lost motivation, almost as if it was sucked from your body. Going to the gym is harder. Eating healthy is stressful. And eventually, you quit. Or you don’t exercise as hard. You make more exceptions in your diet.

Unlike most diet books, I’m not going to clear you of blame, suggest that you need to buy a supplement, or recommend “one change that will fix everything.”

Sometimes the problem is the plan itself, whether a faulty 4-week fix or a diet plan not designed for your body.

The bigger issue is you’re missing a basic concept that allows you to apply new information and strategies to your life. You usually look at why things changed and how you someone seemed to lose your edge. It’s not that motivation isn’t real. TED talks or videos (Rocky montage, anyone?) can obviously trigger a spark that helps you regain your lost motivation and help you push forward. You’re treating the symptom, not the problem.

Don’t wait to regain your mojo before you push ahead. It’s a bankrupt approach. Motivation, willpower, and any other mental capacity is limited. So relying on motivation is not an effective success strategy, especially with your fitness and diet goals.

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