The “plague,” as I lovingly refer to it, came to visit our home three times this winter. Then there were a few big life changes. And the holidays. And fundraising for buildOn as part of my huge commitment to help a bunch of deserving high school kids travel to Africa to build schools.
In short, a lot has happened recently to distract me and harm my motivation when it comes to diligently getting out the door and running. So, what do you do when distraction comes to visit and parks itself on your couch with a bag of potato chips…and you want to join it? Here’s what’s helping me:
1. Fake it ’til you make it. Don’t want to run or exercise? That’s fine, but do it anyway. It’s time to tell distraction to take a hike and kick laziness to the curb. Even if you get out there and have the lamest run or gym workout of your life, guess what–YOU DID IT! Sometimes, you have to take steps to do what you WANT to be doing before the actual motivation, inspiration and excitement arrive at your doorstep.
2. Talk about it. Lack of accountability is often what helps you “get away with it.” Don’t let it happen. Confide in a supportive friend (read: not one who will SUPPORT your laziness) and ask them to encourage you…and be willing to listen when they tell you you’re not committing the way you need to. Talking about it brings about an active awareness of your choice and that alone will help you refocus on what you should be doing that you aren’t.
3. Read about or watch others doing it. Surround yourself with inspiring pictures, videos and friends who are doing what you should be doing or want to be doing. Pick up a running magazine. Watch “Chariots of Fire” or “Without Limits” to get inspired. And, consider your sphere of influence. They say you are the sum of the five people you spend the most time with…so, are your “five” eating burgers and watching the boob tube or hitting the gym and talking about Paleo recipes? What (and who) you surround yourself with WILL show up in your daily activities.
4. Schedule your time. Do you find yourself saying “I don’t have time…” a lot? Then make it! I guarantee if you took a sharp inventory of every minute of your day, you could find the 30 minutes to exercise…heck, a lot more than that! Make it a priority by marking the time down. This is time for YOU to take care of yourself. Do not negotiate–it’s like a flight on an airplane with a child. You can’t secure their air mask without starting with your own first.
5. Let it go. Okay, so you’ve slacked off for two weeks…or more. Okay, so your diet hasn’t been the best and you just stock piled several boxes of Girl Scout cookies (guilty). Shake it off, forgive yourself and move on! Make healthier choices today, tomorrow, the next day, the next day and the next day until you have a healthy habit in place. If you slip, pick yourself back up and keep going. Stay positive and remember that you are going after “progress and not perfection.”
Carry on and good luck, friends!