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If you have questions about this change, you're in the right place. Our editors, experts, and community of change optimists have answers!


Question:How do you motivate yourself to go to the gym and what comes first gym or diet?

I have this mind set that I can't diet until I get into the gym.

Asked by kashif on 3/29/08 3 Answers»


That's a great question but probably the wrong question... let me explain. You've probably heard that you need to diet and exercise to stay and/or get back into better shape. Both the gym and the diet are equally important (gym - this can also be a park, neighborhood, etc.). What's missing here is a priority in yourself to make it happen! You get up for work each day and go through a routine, get home after work and probably go through another routine. Add exercise and diet into that routine and stop trying to think of ways to postpone actually getting started.

I hope this helps!

Carlin Olson

Answered by: TrueTraining1 on 4/1/08


I use a few tools to motivate myself to go the gym . I have signed myself up for my first ever race in a few months, so I know I need to train for it. It's not about being competitive with anyone other than myself - everyday proving to myself that I can go further. If you don't want to sign up for a race, then, I suggest setting your own race date; call it The Personal Challenge. E.g. on April 30th you'll do x number of push-ups and x number of sit-ups and run x number of miles or whatever it may be. Turn it into a competition with yoursel. On the days when I don't feel like it, I use a "trainer" as motivation, e.g., what would "my trainer" say if I didn't show up today? My "guilt" at keeping "him" waiting gets me into the gym. As for diet, I think starting with "clean" foods whenever you can, will make you feel great. Maybe today at lunch even. Use mustard instead of mayonnaise. Remember, the small changes add up.

Answered by: srdny76 on 4/1/08


Read the 'getting started' article for some thoughts about this.


It's certainly true that it's the combination of both diet and exercise that leads to weight loss. Doing both at the same time is ideal.

Allow me to share some wisdom about motivation from our Chief Change Optimist, Ariane ~

Motivation is a funny thing as it really starts in the mind and is less about actions.

So, lets look at that. You need a strong enough reason WHY to do the things you want to do.

Ask yourself Why is it a MUST for you to change? Is it for your health? Is it for your desire to be fully alive and well? We often do more for others than we do for ourselves. Who else wants to see you get well other than yourself? Make a verbal commitment to them about what you will do.

Another way to help get motivated is to ask for help from people you know and find a buddy to exercise with. The support and comraderie of others can help make the task of exercising more pleasant.

Also, you need to associate pleasure with exercising, not pain. Find ways to work exercise into your daily routine in a way that doesn't feel like a burden.

Good luck with your goals. Let us know how it goes!

Answered by: VictoriaB on 3/29/08
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