It is no secret that losing weight can be tough! And if you don’t see results quickly, it can be easy to lose motivation.

But that doesn’t mean you should give up.

Regardless of what you read about the latest and greatest fad diet, there is no quick solution for healthy, long-term weight loss. 

Even if your journey may take a little longer than you’d prefer, when starting a healthy weight loss program, it’s important to remember the behaviors and habits you’re establishing now will result in life-changing, long-term results.

That’s why sustaining the motivation to continue your weight loss journey is so important. It’s really more than half the battle. But it’s definitely worth it.

Try these five tips to help you stay motivated.

1.   Remember your “why”. Think about why you want to lose weight. 

Oftentimes, my clients tell me they want to lose weight so that they can lower their blood pressure or cholesterol, and get off medications. Some say it’s to prevent diabetes or heart disease. Others say they want more energy and just need to feel better.

Everyone has a “why”. So try writing your “why” down and refer to it often—especially on those days you feeling like giving up. Also, try to think about how you will feel when you reach your goal. Just remind yourself the journey will not always be easy, but it will be worth it.

2.   Start the day off with activity.

Exercise, such as a group exercise class, can keep you motivated to stick to your plan.
Starting your day off with exercise will help keep you motivated all day.

Try to wake up earlier and do some sort of physical activity before you start your day. Try going for a walk, do a group exercise class, or even a home exercise routine. 

 If you aren’t already exercising, it’s okay to ease into it. Just do what you able to, even if it’s just some stretches.

It also helps to change up your exercise routine, so that you don’t get bored. Find something you enjoy, and it will make exercise more pleasurable. For example, I love to go for a walk, do Pilates or yoga.

Exercise will help give you energy throughout the day and will help motivate you to make healthier choices. It’s also a great, healthy way to manage stress. 

3.   Set weekly small goals and write them down.

Each week set three to five action goals that get you working towards your overall goal. 

Action goals are specific, measurable, actionable, relative and time specific. For example, an action goal could be, “I am going to go for a walk for 30 minutes around my neighborhood after work on Monday, Wednesday and Friday this week”. Action goals keep you moving forward and give you focus for the week.

I recommend setting goals on Sunday for the following week. 

Before setting new goals for the week, evaluate your goals from the previous week. Did you meet your goals? If not, what were the barriers? Reward yourself along the way for meeting your goals. Examples of good rewards would be buying a new workout outfit or getting a massage.

Keep in mind, it’s important to set realistic goals. Otherwise you will set yourself up for failure.

Don’t forget to write your goals down and refer to them throughout the week. Checking off those weekly goals will keep you motivated and on track.

4.   Focus on the positives and not just the scale.

Don't focus on the scale. It takes time to lose weight. Focus on how you feel.
Don’t focus on the scale! Focus on how you feel.

When you’re on a weight loss journey, it’s important to keep in mind that you did not put on all the weight overnight, so it will not come off overnight. It will take time to see the scale move a significant amount. 

However, when you start implementing healthy behaviors, you should start noticing that you have more energy, you sleep better, your stress will be better managed, and you will feel better overall.

Focus more on how you feel instead of the numbers on the scale.

5.   Get a support system.

Having someone to exercise with you can help keep you motivated to continue to stick to your plan.

Losing weight is not easy and will take a lot of support along the way. It helps to have a support system or accountability partner to check in with you often. This could be a friend, family member or a professional, such as a health coach.

If possible, tell someone what you’re doing. It helps to have a friend to exercise with or a family member to help with grocery shopping or meal prepping.

Want to join an online community that can give you support on your weight loss journey? Join my Facebook group “Weight Loss Support with DF”. I share recipes and meal ideas, and also host “5 Day Challenges” to help keep you motivated and on track.

Need more tips to help you lose weight? Check out my blog “10 Tips to Weight Loss Success.”