“How do they stay motivated?” is a popular question among new people entering the healthy chapters of their lives. I remember asking this question to several of the BBG girls (Kayla Itsines Bikini Body Guide) when I first started. I thought it was crazy enough that some people completed the twelve week program, but some of these girls had been following the guide for 48 weeks and counting! So, how did they do it? How do they stay so motivated?
As I reflected on my 2016 fitness journey, I can tell you that there is definitely one way to stay motivated for an entire year and more. I’ve stuck it out for over one year now, and I can finally share with you all the one step that got me here:
Motivation is what gets you to start your journey. Discipline and habit are what keeps you going for months and years.
When I first started out in January of 2016, I was amazed at how many beautiful ladies were seeing results with BBG. Their before-and-after photos are inspiring and encouraging (check out @mysweatlife). That was my motivation. That was what got me off the couch and on the treadmill. Those photos led me to think, “I can do that too.”
But what kept me, and so many other people, going to the gym after the first twelve weeks was not the motivation. It was the discipline that we developed. Personally, my results after twelve weeks of BBG were not as incredible as the ladies I was admiring. This could have been an easy stopping point to my fitness journey. It’s the old, “hey I tried it and it didn’t work for me,” bullshit excuse that so many people fall victim of. And I would have been asking the same question again, “how the heck are they still motivated?!”
So, how to stay motivated is the wrong question. Being motivated is easy; just look at fitness transformations on Instagram, listen to a moving podcast, or watch an uplifting video on youtube. How does one develop the discipline to change bad habits and establish healthy habits is a better question, but the answer is harder to do. You have to force yourself to work at your goals. You have to put on your sneakers when you aren’t feeling motivated, and just go for that run you planned on doing. You have to ignore the part of you that is making up excuses, and push yourself to do things you don’t feel like doing. It’s better to cultivate habits than rely on motivation. Motivation is fleeting and whimsical. Habits are reliable, long lasting, and earned.