Find the Motivation Behind Your Motivation
Sometimes in the beginning of the weight-loss process, we aren’t sure exactly why it is we’re doing it. Losing weight to look and feel better about yourself or to become healthier is great, but you have to break it down a little further and find the true reasons.
I lost weight as a teenager because I wasn’t happy about my body, or myself in general. I was teased by my brothers and by people at school, and I was struggling with depression. Losing weight gave me time to focus on me and on making myself better, and exercising gave me time to clear my head.
I ended up quitting high school because they made me take an additional year of PE class, only to go on to become a competitive athlete as a young adult. I wanted to bring my body up to the same level as all of my peers— little did I know that I would excel well past that.
Write Down Your Goals and Create a Plan to Achieve them
Writing and breaking down your goals can help them become more attainable. Say you want to lose 60lbs over the next 6 months. That means that you would have to lose 10lbs a month, or 2.5lbs a week. If you break each goal into smaller goals, it helps you stay on track and allows you to more closely track your progress.
If your goal is instead to “get healthier”, write down your last measured blood pressure, cholesterol, and any other measurable area that your doctor asked you to work on.
Most fitness centers will do a free assessment with measurements and body fat percentage test. You should focus on losing fat as opposed to just body weight, because it is having body fat at an excess of 30% that puts you at risk. You want to maintain lean muscle, and even build more muscle and strength along your journey.
Get Help— Doctors, Dietitians, Health Management Resources, Personal Trainers
There are a variety of types of health and fitness professionals who can help you reach your goals. Your family doctor of course can give you an idea of how much weight you should be looking to lose, as well as tips and pointers on nutrition and fitness.
If you are struggling with the nutritional aspect of it, a dietitian will help you calculate the amount of different types of nutrients that you need, and will help you create nutritional guidelines to follow.
Medically supervised weight loss clinics, or Health Management Resource programs can also help you get on track initially. HMR programs will provide you will pre-made meals and nutritional shakes at first, but they also include counseling sessions, education, and recipes to help you learn how to make nutritious, lower-calorie meals on your own.
Personal trainers can help you get your fitness on track. They generally are not certified in nutrition or dietetics, but they can also advise you as to how many calories your body needs, and what kinds of foods you should be eating.
*If you’re interested in snagging a spot for a guest post, please e-mail me at email@example.com. I’d be more than happy to discuss details! Topics can be success stories, tips, recipes, etc. as long as it’s related to healthy living.6 notes
A couple of weeks ago, I was reached out to and given the wonderful opportunity of becoming a Bulu Box Brand Ambassador. Naturally, I accepted and couldn’t be more excited and grateful for having the chance to work with this company.
I kinda sorta love that the box is covered in motivational words. “Go the extra mile. It’s never crowded.”
About Bulu Box:
Bulu Box is the first vitamin, supplement and general health subscription sample box designed to help you feel your best. Every month, you’ll get a box filled with 4 to 5 premium, curated samples from top brands. Look forward to a new mix of products for both women and men, including vitamins, weight loss, sports nutrition, protein, diet, energy, detox, digestion, sexual health, herbs, natural remedies, endurance and more. We’ll make sure you get enough to decide if the product is right for you. No shipping or shady fees. Depending on your plan, you can cancel anytime. Get ready for a healthy discovery!
There are 2 options:
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Me personally? I chose the Weight Loss Bulu Box. And no, it’s not because I’m trying to lose weight, nor do I want or need to lose any more. It’s because of my blog’s audience. A lot of my readers come to me seeking weight loss advice, so I think it’ll be beneficial to physically see the newest available resources. After a couple of months, I’ll be switching to the regular Bulu Box.
My first Bulu Box came with several healthy recipe cards and a few vitamin/supplement samples. I was very surprised to see the recipe cards! They all sound absolutely delicious, and I can’t wait to test out the recipes!
Here’s how it works:
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Click my personal ambassador link below to sign up!
Spread the word, and refer your friends! :)4 notes
Job title: Manager of Your Health
Job status: Open
Positions available: Unlimited
The cycle of the working class…most of you know what I’m referring to. We get up. We get ready. We show up. We do our best to get through the day. Then we go home only to prepare ourselves for the same routine. We may not want to do it. We may find it monotonous. And we may bellyache from time to time. But we still show up for a reason. Money to pay bills? Self-satisfaction? Whatever the case, we essentially work towards something. Otherwise, why else would we be motivated enough to punch our time cards?
Well, guess what? It’s time to begin your 2nd job. It’s time to begin establishing new priorities. It’s time to treat exercise like it’s your job. Your health is something that should never be thrown on the back burner. And you always have the opportunity to find a “job” that you enjoy doing - running, yoga, swimming, lifting, anything! The options are virtually endless. This time, you don’t have to place yourself in a dead-end job. It’s possible to find something that suits your personal needs / current lifestyle.
You are the owner of your life. So, congratulations! You’re officially hired to be the boss of your body and the manager of your health! The pay off may not come in the form of cold hard cash, but the physical benefits out-reap any momentary (normal) pain or discomfort that you may feel during exercise. And your body will pay out what you pay in - weight loss, less anxiety, more confidence, maybe a sense of self-pride? Heck - you’ll even reduce the risk of life-threatening diseases and illnesses! Bonus check!
Be just as dedicated to your health as you are to your job. If you slack off on the job, then your quality of life will soon reflect. What happens when you turn into the excuse maker at your job? You’ll probably get a verbal, then a written, and ultimately worse…fired. Regardless, it will almost always result in a negative outcome. Don’t get fired from life. You only have 1 body, so give it the respect that it deserves because guess what? Your body is your body FOREVER - it’s not going anywhere. Pay close attention to each department: body, mind, soul, and spirit.
Finding the right balance within all areas of your life is the key to success. You work at least 40 hours per week, so that’s about 24% of your week. It’s perfectly reasonable to be able to gather up enough time for a quick and effective workout. Any amount of time is better than nothing at all. But aim to intensify the activity if you find yourself needing to race the clock. Make it count.
Treating exercise like a 2nd job will help you cut back on “calling off”. Yes, you’ll have temporary rewards from calling off, i.e. more sleep, relaxation, or time to get things done that have been set aside. But these rewards won’t last forever. The rewards from being healthy will continue to last as long as you keep showing up to your job! You’ll see improvement in all aspects of your life as you become healthier. Here are some tips to help get you started!
Make a schedule: Plan workout sessions in advance, and work around these appointments, meetings, or whatever you want to call them just as you would with your regular work schedule. And be descriptive! Write a brief note explaining where you’ll workout, what you’ll be doing, and how long you’ll be doing it (i.e. home, yoga, 1 hour). I know it sounds less-than-appealing to schedule exercise, but then you won’t have any other choice but to commit to be fit. Just think about how good you’ll feel afterward and how crummy you’d feel if you were to cancel or no-show your planned session. I know that with the longer I put something off, the less motivated I become. Adhering to a schedule will also allow you to look back and see what you’ve accomplished and where any problems have arose in the past.
Don’t be late: Nothing looks worse than showing up late for work, so it’s seemingly easy for us to race the clock when we’re running late. We find ourselves suddenly turning into the Tasmanian Devil, and in a whirlwind, we quickly get dressed, grab a cup of coffee, and rush out the door with no problem. Then why can’t we treat exercise appointments in the same manner? Fuel your body, get dressed, and do the work. We are perfectly capable of showing up on time. Have an early morning session scheduled? Get your gear ready the night before, or place your alarm clock in such a place that you actually have to stand up in order to turn it off. Have a session scheduled after work? Pack your gym clothes beforehand, so you don’t make an excuse to go home where you’ll be more inclined (no pun intended) to sit on the couch.
Hold yourself accountable: Find a “co-worker” to help you get the job done or to motivate you at the very least. Stick with the mindset of not letting your fellow employees down. You’ll be less likely to blow off a workout if you know that somebody is waiting for your arrival. If you constantly stand people up for no good reason, you’re going to come off as being unreliable. Find people with similar goals, and come up with a plan for success that you can work on together. You can even keep one another updated on your progress. Make things exciting! There’s nothing wrong with a little friendly competition. Or you can find a class and try something outside of your comfort zone. You never know - you just might surprise yourself and find a new activity that you enjoy!
Learn to prioritize and multitask: Occasionally, inevitable things will happen, but you need to ask yourself if it’s a legitimate reason or just an altruistic excuse to throw in the towel early. If you’re tired, just give it 5-10 minutes and see how you feel from that point on. More than likely, you’ll want to continue. Nobody likes the feeling of unfinished business. Happy hour can wait. The dishes can wait. Family obligations or emergencies? That’s an entirely different story, and obviously, you’ll have to cancel or reschedule your workout when certain situations arise. It’s all about priorities! If you feel guilty for setting a task aside, try to multitask as you’re able to by bringing books or study materials with you. You can multitask in other ways too - calf raises while brushing your teeth or planking during commercial breaks, perhaps?
Focus on the task at hand: You can’t spend all of your time agonizing over your entire to-do list or focusing on other people. The only thing you’ll accomplish is the loss of precious time and much added stress. Be present in the moment, and do your best! The results you see are directly proportional to the effort that is given. If your mind isn’t in the game, your progress is going to be on a standstill. Try to eliminate as many (if not all) distractions as you can - shutting off your phone is a biggie! Your zone can be lost with a simple email or text message. And don’t waste time socializing…just get the job done. You’ll save time, and you’ll get more out of your workout. So set the stage, stick with your plan, and visualize the outcome.
Follow a dress code: Don’t show up to the gym wearing a prom dress, a pair of worn-out jeans, or dressed as if you’re about to go on a special date. You wouldn’t show up to a corporate office in sweatpants, would you? I sure hope not! Wear clothes that will allow you to bring your A game for whatever activity you plan to partake in. Running? Wear proper running shoes, not baseball cleats. I’m sure you understand my point. It doesn’t have to be top-of-the-line, wallet-emptying equipment, but you should be comfortable and dressed for the job in the most appropriate manner.
Schedule days off: Nobody should ever have to work 7 days straight without a break, so it’s crucial to give your body necessary and adequate time for rest and recovery - at least 1 full day per week. Otherwise, you’ll find yourself feeling lethargic, overworked, and unmotivated as a result. Rest is important because it allows your body to adapt to the physical stress that you have placed upon yourself in the days prior. Your body will also be able to replenish energy stores and repair damaged tissue. It’s quite remarkable how the human body is able to adapt to stress. I know that rest days can leave some people feeling antsy, but trust me, your body will thank you in more ways than 1! If rest is driving you up the wall, you can also try active recovery like yoga or stretching.
Strive for upgrades and promotions: Don’t expect to see results if you don’t put in the work. You can’t sit around waiting for good things to happen. You always hold the power to make good things happen. The biggest obstacle in life is attitude, and the only limits you have are the ones that you place on yourself. But a key thing to remember is making sure that you don’t take on too much at once. You can’t expect to become “employee of the month” after 1 week on the job. However, every new day gives you the opportunity to be better than before…or be “promoted” to the next level (i.e. a heavier dumbbell, longer mileage, or advanced variations). Adapt, reflect, and progress. Doing too much will result in injury, while doing too little will not result in anything at all. You can certainly dream big, but take your climb on the totem pole one day at a time.
You are not alone. There are plenty of reasons why it’s difficult to lose weight. I know. I’ve endured it myself. I’ve shot out every excuse in the book. Here are some reasons why people
find make it difficult to lose weight.
1.) You’re surrounded by temptation. This is often the case with a lot of people in the working class. You’re faced with business meetings, holidays, birthdays, etc. Perhaps you’re constantly on the go, and you find that vending machines and fast food joints are around every corner. There are going to be things you can control and things you can’t control. Create healthy surroundings where able, and train your mind to surpass the impassable. Bringing your healthy lifestyle with you is a surefire way in keeping you motivated. Prepare snacks, pack gym gear for before or after work, and keep track of how you’re running your body. You’re the boss. Don’t fall asleep on the job!
2.) You have an insufficient support system. While it’s true that this is your commitment, your journey, and your life, it’s always helpful to have a solid support system for those not-so-good days…when the possible seems impossible. Needing someone doesn’t make you weak, and it certainly doesn’t make you a failure. A lot of us don’t want to ask for help for the fear of hurting one’s self pride. Independence is important, but it’s human nature to crave support. Be sure to surround yourself with uplifting individuals who have no chance in sabotaging your success, and be sure to make a plan for the sticky situations - family gatherings, a partner who eats unhealthy, etc. If you open your eyes, you’ll be delighted to find plenty of useful resources such as online communities. You may even be lucky enough find a workout buddy!
3.) Your mental health is suffering. This is perhaps the biggest thing that I can highlight in this post. It’s something I wish I knew before beginning my journey. The past is the past for a reason. We all hold the power to alter our future by changing today. I used food to fill the empty void within my heart and soul, then upon losing weight, I became terrified of something that used to comfort me. It’s important to assess the reasoning behind your decision making and make the necessary changes to cope with the impending emotional stress. If you don’t understand nor come to terms with the root of the issue, the issue will never be fixed. The issue may hide temporarily, but chances are, it will rise to the surface when least expected nor ready to handle the situation. Confronting your negativity and in turn changing your thought process is the first step towards building a healthy attitude and mind.
4.) You set unrealistic goals. A lot of people set themselves up for failure before they even begin their journey by setting the bar too high. The bar should be set just high enough to where you’d only need a step stool to reach, and then you can build your ladder based on your personal progression. It’s important to celebrate the small victories to keep one’s self motivated. Your weight gain didn’t happen overnight, so don’t expect to lose it overnight. Weight loss journeys should be taken as a present day activity, not a future endeavor. So you had a bad day? Shrug it off and move on. There’s no point in dwelling within the should’ves, could’ves, and would’ves. Take charge of your life when given the next opportunity. To begin, think of your ultimate goal, and break down your goal into daily, weekly, or monthly increments. Keep track of your progress, and change anything that you find isn’t working. Weight loss plans should never be seen as a “cookie cutter.” We are all different and therefore have different needs.
5.) Your schedule is inflexible. “I can’t because I have to…” Does this sound familiar? Truth is, you can’t wait for time to arise, you have to make time. Life will always be busy. Any number will always be better than 0. While it’s true that you need at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day, it’s perfectly acceptable to break the time into smaller, more feasible increments. 30 minutes is 2% of the day. Do what you need to do, and put off what you can put off. Your health, however, should never be something that’s placed on a shelf. Health has no room for procrastination. Schedule workouts just as you would a meeting, appointment, etc. and make them mandatory! Stay prepared for those bumps in the road by keeping your workout gear handy and healthy snacks within reach. Life can only be as flexible as you make it.
6.) You aim for perfection. Do you want to be perfect? Well you can forget about that. You’ll have good days, bad days, and everything in between. That’s the beauty in the journey. It puts the tiger in the cat. Strive for progress, not perfection. If you’re perfect, you’ll have nothing to work for. No sense of pride. No sense of satisfaction. No sense of glory. You’ll be stuck in time. Allowing room for error will allow you to learn, which will then allow you to move forward much stronger than before. Don’t let the bad days derail you. You wouldn’t trash an entire bushel of grapes because of a single bad one, would you? No. You’d pick it off and save the good grapes. Use that as a metaphor for life too.
7.) You have a bad attitude. “The only disability in life is a bad attitude.” Thanks Scott Hamilton. You took the words right out of my mouth. Don’t expect to see permanent results if you don’t instill permanent actions. You have to be ready to make the changes, and you have to be in this for life. It’s very easy to be discouraged when hitting a plateau, but I view plateaus as the body’s way of asking, “Are you in this for life?” Weight loss isn’t easy, so it’s crucial that you keep the flame within your heart burning bright even as a gust of wind crosses by. Seek motivation and reasoning to keep moving forward. There are no quick fixes. Quick fixes lead to quick results, but those results are quick to fade. Trust me. Been there, done that. It wasn’t until I changed my way of thinking that I was able to build a new lifestyle suitable for me. Do this for you. Do this for life.
8.) You’re making things too complicated. It’s really not that complicated. It’s a struggle, but it’s not complicated in the strictest of definitions. It’s easy to brain wash yourself into thinking that simple things are complicated. I see it as an excuse maker. Enough with the, “it’s impossible” excuses. Turn the “impossible” into “I’m possible.” Yes, weight loss and exercise are things that need to be understood and initially approached with care, but focusing on too many things at once will create a “What am I getting myself into?!” frame of mind. The true answer? You’re getting into life. Don’t think of the technology behind the camera, the developing process, and the pixelated elements of an image. Look at the big picture. The dream. The end result. How will you become a better version of yourself?
9.) Your overall lifestyle is poor. Successful weight loss requires action against many components within your life. You can’t change just one thing and expect it to work. It’s like having a bulb that burns out because of faulty wiring. If you only change the bulb and ignore the wiring, the bulb will never glow. An overall healthy life is comprised of mental toughness, eating right, and staying active. Each one ties into the other, and you constantly need to be open to new ideas. You’ll can either undo the damage or let the damage undo do. The choice is yours. Throw the word “diet” out of your vocabulary. It’s a lifestyle change. You have to be willing to set rules, make sacrifices, alter your schedule, and change your routine.
Never lose hope. With dedication, discipline, and determination, you too can surpass these struggles.33 notes
Weight loss tip! My best friend since I was 13 years old has recently begun her weight loss journey. She’s lost 6 lbs so far, and I couldn’t be more proud of her. She sent me this picture and explained that she will rip a number off of the wall for every lb she loses. She shrieked with excitement when telling me that she was able to rip off 6 from the wall. It’s like visualizing weight loss in an entirely different light, and in turn allows you to interact with your journey. I had to share this idea with all of you. This is a sure fire way to keep yourself motivated as you can also add numbers if you gain a few lbs, which indicates that changes ought to be made, etc. I also think it’s a neat-o idea to add a random oddball colored number that indicates a treat. A new pair of jeans? A worry-free night out with friends? A spa treatment? The options are endless, and I’m sure you’ll be more than eager to reach whatever designated number you choose!
Good luck to all of those who have started or are continuing their journey. Stay strong, move forward, and be your hero!39 notes
“I can’t go out…I’m on a diet." Does this sound familiar? It’s a statement that a lot of us have said or heard time and time again. First off, I hate the word "diet" because it’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle change. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, maintain weight, and so on, you don’t have to avoid eating out. You just have to make the right choices. I’m going to offer several handy tips for enjoying what should be considered a social gathering rather than just "another meal.”
1.) I’m going to begin with what a lot of us turn to throughout the day for a little pick me up. Coffee. Yes, coffee is good for you, but not when it’s jam packed with whole milk, sugary syrups, extra toppings, and heavy cream. If you need a boost during the day, coffee is a fine choice. Just keep it on the light side. You don’t need all of those extra calories. In fact, a lot of people completely disregard the calories we drink as opposed to the calories we bite, chew, etc. Avoid the calorie bombs and opt for skim milk, sugar free syrup, and no whipped topping.
2.) The idea of an appetizer is kind of bizarre. It’s basically a meal we eat before we eat our meal sort of deal. Sounds kind of silly, right? Regardless, avoid appetizers that are fried, breaded, and chalk full of high fat cheeses/meats. Dangerous choices include chicken strips, cheese fries, nachos, cream based soups, and so on. Better yet, it’s a good idea to skip the appetizer all together. Most appetizers seem to be very high in calories, primarily composed of fat calories. However, you can choose to order a broth based soup, a side salad, or you can order a healthy appetizer instead of a large entree. 8 Worst Appetizers in America.
3.) Entrees in restaurants always seem to be served on what can be considered a family-sized serving dish. Often times, we utter the words, “wow, that’s a lot of food.” And, you’re absolutely right. It doesn’t mean that you have to become a member of the clean plate club. If you’re aware of the extremely large portions, try sharing with someone who enjoys the same foods as you do. Or, only eat half of what is in front of you and take the rest home in a to-go box. You can save it for a later meal or pack it for lunch the next day. Two meals for the price of one!
4.) Let’s be completely honest here. You have very little to no control over what’s served to you at a restaurant because unfortunately, we can’t be present inside of the kitchen. It’s okay to enjoy yourself occasionally. Don’t become obsessive over the menu because you’ll drive yourself crazy in the process. One small spurge per week won’t make much of a difference as long as the rest of your week is healthy.
HEALTHY FOOD PICKS:
Salads: Ask for light or fat-free dressing served on the side. Ordering dressing in the side allows you to control how much you’re eating. Ixnay on the croutons, and go easy on the cheese.
Soups: Opt for broth based soups such as chicken noodle, vegetable, or minestrone.
Meats: Choose extra lean cuts of beat, chicken/turkey, or fish. Avoid breaded or fried entrees and choose grilled or broiled options.
Pasta dishes: Order a meatless dish served with vegetables and whole grains. Avoid dishes with cream based sauces and a lot of extra cheese.
Sides: Order steamed vegetables or fruit instead of fries. If you choose a baked potato, fine, but be careful with your toppings. Calories and fat content add up quickly with too much butter or sour cream.
Drinks: Order water, coffee, or tea. Need a little flavor? Ask for a lemon wedge in your water.
Dessert: A little taste of chocolate or ice cream won’t do much damage, but desserts that are served in restaurants are big enough to feed an entire family. If you decide to splurge, share with friends, and ask the waiter/waitress to bring out extra plates and silverware.
Other: Ask if it is possible to prepare the meal without butter or margarine. Avoid sour cream and heavy cream based sauces on pasta dishes.36 notes