…that 80% of people who start a fitness program (i.e. join a gym) drop it in 2 to 3 months?
If you’re one of the 20% who have made it past the 2-3 month mark, congratulations! I’d love to hear what made you keep going. Friends? Goals? Results? Bribery? Perhaps, dare I say it, you started to actually enjoy working out?
If you’ve been one of the 80% who didn’t quite go the distance, what do you think would keep you motivated? For me it started with my health insurance. In order to get money back I had to go to the gym 3 times week for 11 of 14 weeks. I didn’t make it the first time I tried. But by the time I managed to do it I had a fitness habit. I endured until I enjoyed.
If you’re willing to give it another try here are a few tips to keep you motivated:
- Write down your goal(s) and make them SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic (or Rewardable), and Time specific).
- Have a goal that is event or activity oriented. You could go so far as to sign up for a race or to simply take 15 classes between now and Thanksgiving.
- Break your goals up into bite size pieces. If you want to lose 50 pounds, start with losing 5.
- Find a support system – a friend to go to the gym with or join a class. Introduce yourself to someone you’ve seen at the gym. It’s pretty motivating when you know someone will ask where you’ve been.
- Get back on track after you’ve been derailed. Instead of getting down on yourself, get back up. No one, and I mean no one, has done everything right the first time. What would be the point?
- Develop strategies for success. Look back over your past behaviors to see what you might do differently this time. Did you stop working out because you had no time? Were you better able to go to the gym when you’d put it in your calendar? Did you stick to your healthy eating when you wrote it down?