Eat. Live. Be. #11: Finding Motivation

by Cate on March 15, 2011

ELB logo - largeThis week’s Eat. Live. Be. topic is slightly similar to one we did back in the beginning.  Back then, it was how to motivate yourself to keep up your work-out routine during the cold Winter months.  This time, it’s how to motivate yourself period.  It’s definitely something we could all use a little help in from time to time.  It can’t be just me.

On Saturday, I took a one hour Zumba class.  Followed by a 90-minute Zumba class.  Followed by a three-mile walk.  I was supremely motivated.  And I continue to be.  There are a million and one things that motivate me on a regular basis.  Small things.  Stupid things.  Big things.

Most of my work-outs are done at night.  At the end of a very long day.  When the last thing I feel like doing is heading back out to kill an hour plus of cardio or strength training.  My energy, boundless or not, has long since been depleted.  Ever had “witching hour” with the kids?  Then you know exactly what I’m talking about.  It takes every ounce I have to get myself motivated enough to suit up and head back out.

But I don’t give myself a second to back out.  Not a moment to hesitate.  I am on auto-pilot and I just do.  I have a rotating set of people that I meet regularly for work-outs, and I know they’re counting on me.  It’s at the point where I’ll get a text message or facebook note from an instructor if I miss a class.  I am being held accountable.  In so many different ways.  And that motivates me.  Pushes me through.  And I love that.

One thing I know for certain.  While the little motivations help … a cocktail dress you need to fit into for an upcoming party, a wedding, a high school class reunion … they won’t sustain you to the finish line.  They won’t keep you maintaining what you have achieved.  Short-term goals do not work.  I promise you this. You need to find a goal that has no end, so you are continually striving to achieve.  To maintain.  To meet and exceed.  To keep on keeping on.  You need something to motivate you?  Find something long-term.  Not something you can tick off your list in the next few months.  Something that you can continue to achieve and aspire to.

My no-end-in-sight motivation?  These kids.
My Motivation

I owe it to them, every day, to be the very best mom that I can be.  To be the best me that I can be.  Our eating habits are good lessons for them.  Ones that I know they’re paying attention to.  The fact that mom regularly works out?  A huge impact on them.  I want to be the very best role model I can be for them.  So they know that I did everything with the very best motivation I could.  For them.  I can think of no better reason.

They take their own Zumba classes weekly.  We go on hikes and bike rides together.  We plan adventures.  We have jump rope contests.  They help make healthy choices when stocking the pantry and grocery shopping with me.  Together, we all have one common goal.  To be the best we can be.

My only regret is that it took me a little while to find my way.  I feel like I missed out on some stellar moments I could have had over the past twenty years, carrying the excess weight around.  But the ship was righted, and it’s been full steam ahead ever since.

To find out what is motivating my fellow ELBers, please visit them at the below links:

Project 365
March 14, 2011, Photo #71


Whole Wheat Pita PizzasTwo versions of this recipe coming your way on Thursday.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Joanne March 16, 2011 at 6:15 am

I think that staying motivated is definitely about the longterm goals and not some transient thing. It’s about lifestyle change…not just a short term diet. I think having people to hold you accountable….to continually remind you what you are working for when sometimes you can’t see it – great idea.

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Patsy March 16, 2011 at 8:39 am

I think keeping your eye-on-the-prize (ie: time spent with the kids) is a great way to stay motivated! My boys see that I’m running and have asked to follow behind on their bikes. Just seeing their interest in staying active and healthy is a great motivation!

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Ramona March 16, 2011 at 11:44 am

You are a whole lot active than my mom ever thought about being.

I like her polka dot rain coat.

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scribbler March 16, 2011 at 6:14 pm

I agree about the long term goal setting! It wasn’t until my health became a concern that I really buckled down and stopped with the half-hearted exercising I was doing before (and the on again, off again eating habits). It’s great that you’re also doing so much with your kids and that it’s health focused and not just weight/looks focused.

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