Al Bargen at Spartan Race Sun Peaks Sept 2013

It can be difficult to start a weight loss plan, but getting started is generally the hardest part. You know you need to get in better shape and lose those extra pounds, but having the desire and motivation to do so can keep you from it. The thing to do is find a good reason, one that motivates you, one that will help you stick to the plan. In my book Cheeseburger Abs, I call it your big “why”, and even have worksheets to help you articulate it. Here are a few to help you get started.

 Look good for an upcoming event. This can be any event that drives you to workout and eat less. Whether it’s your anniversary, an office party, or a high school reunion. Using these events as a motivator can often keep you from slacking off or quitting. Choose an event that’s still a few months away so you have time to work towards it. I use obstacle races for this. Last year was the Spartan Race. This year…. stay tuned.

 Run or walk a charity marathon. If you can’t find the motivation for yourself, you can always choose to prepare for a marathon. Getting involved in one that’s for a good cause is a great motivator. You can set aside your personal feelings, doubts and dislike of exercising when you know that you’re working towards something that is meaningful to you and will benefit a great organization like cancer or abused children.

 Get ready for a beach vacation. If you’re planning a vacation, especially to the beach, this can motivate you to get the pounds off. It doesn’t have to be a beach, but planning a vacation anywhere is a good reason to want to get in shape. Your ideal vacation may include plenty of walking tours and you want to be able to keep up and not feel so worn out. Starting an exercise program a few months before your vacation is a great way to ensure you can keep up, have a good time and look good in that new vacation wardrobe.

 A new wardrobe. You don’t have to go on vacation to want a new wardrobe, just wanting some new clothes for the sake of looking nice and thinner is a great motivator. If you’re tired of shopping in larger sizes and can’t find anything cute in your size, this is a good reason to start and stick with an exercise program and better eating plan.

 Maybe you need something a little more exciting to motivate you, maybe you like a good competition or you want to be a little vengeful with your reasons. If this drives you to succeed, then go for it. Some things you may want to consider as motivators include:

 *Making your ex jealous – If you know you’ll see your ex in the future or if you have children and see your ex on a regular basis. Losing weight and looking good to make them a bit jealous may be a great way to motivate yourself. It doesn’t have to be your ex spouse either. It can be an ex friend or a co-worker that you don’t like.

 *Winning a bet with someone – Having a bet with someone is another great motivator. This works especially well if you can compete with someone you aren’t all that fond of. It can be a co-worker, your mother-in-law or father-in-law or even a sister or brother in law. Whoever you choose to bet with needs to be someone that you’re around from time to time.

 *To show off in front of your spouse – If your spouse has picked on you about your weight or if you spouse needs to lose some extra pounds too, this is a great way to keep your momentum going and it might even spark their desire to lose weight too.

 Whatever reason you choose to lose weight and get in better shape, make sure it’s something that will motivate you on a daily basis. Use your reason to catapult your success and to get you off your butt and do the work necessary to achieve your goal.

 

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