Tuesday, January 31, 2012

How to Motivate Yourself {Without Even Trying}

If you're one of those disgusting people who is all like, "Oh, I work out because it feels good!" or "I work out because I love it!" you should just stop reading this post now.  It will not help you in the least {and frankly, you disgust me...just kidding...but seriously}.

I literally hate nothing more than working out.  I'd much rather be cooking or reading or scraping gunk out of a stopped up drain.  In high school and college, I didn't feel the need to work out because I was super skinny and firm. 

Then I got married.

And I haven't really gained a lot of weight.  Stuff just got a little...softer.  Josh and I made a pact {after gorging on our Disney Cruise} that 2012 would be the year of healthy living.  I've already discussed our raw foods/lean protein diet.  After 3 weeks of healthy eating, I knew I had to bite the bullet and work out.  The problem?  I've never followed a workout plan for longer than a day.  Ever.

I knew I needed something to motivate me.  I also knew that I needed this pair of boots on my feet:

Ugh...I die.  I DIE.

But when Josh saw the price tag on those gorgeous, gorgeous wellies, he nearly choked.  My Mister is a bargain shopper and he considers his Vibram 5 Fingers the height of haute couture.  I tried to explain that you pay for quality, but he still said no.  Cue my most diabolical scheme yet:

Motivation:  Work out each week to color a line in.  The longer you wait to work out, the longer you'll wait for your boots!  Will you be flabby and bootless or firm and well shod?
 I call it Wellies 4 Wellness.  You may have seen me tweet about it:

As a teacher, I know the value of earning a reward.  For every day that my students all stay on green {behavior management, y'all!}, they get to add a brownie point to a pan I have hot glued to my wall.  When the pan fills up, they get to pick a reward.  They are devastated when they don't earn a brownie point, so this method almost always works. 

The same goes for me.  I got Josh to agree to set aside $10 for every week that I work out.  I color in a line to "earn" the money.  I've seen similar ideas on Pinterest:

Finding a motivator was simple.  I just chose something I'd never just go out and buy.  Well...I'd probably just go out and buy those boots, but I respect the Mister too much to do that.  So think of something you've wanted for a while...maybe a pair of shoes, a cruise, or even a new television.  It helps if it's something a little more on the expensive side {because if you're working out for something cheap, there won't be a lot to stop you from going out and buying it}.  After I found my motivator, I printed out a boot outline, drew my lines, and placed it on my fridge.  Easy as pie!

It could also work for other situations.  Maybe your child is meant to read a certain amount each week for school.  Perhaps you could find their motivator, make a chart, and have them fill it out each week.  There's something about physically coloring in the lines that really helps me out. 

I have to actually stick to the plan {no cheating} in order to color in the line and earn the cash.  Here's my workout schedule:

If Mammy doesn't motivate, you're probably a lost cause.

On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, I complete 8 Minute Abs and an intermediate Zumba workout:

It's so bad, it's good.  Seriously.

And can we all just thank Jesus and our lucky stars that this thing was invented?  Instead of embarrassing myself in public, I can embarrass myself in the comfort of my own home.
On Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, I complete 8 Minute Abs {because I'd love abs like those pictured above} and an excellent yoga routine by Jenny Corneo. 

You can buy it here OR stream it on Netflix Instant Queue.
And BTW...after only one week of sticking to my workout routine, I can totally do this:

In all seriousness, I finally mastered this move last week.

For a girl who hasn't ever stuck with a workout regime for longer than a day, I'm really proud of myself for sticking with this one for a week.  I've found that the boots {oh, those BOOTS!} are a great motivator and when I come straight home and workout, I actually feel pretty decent.  It was absolute torture to work with my kiddos at school with incredibly sore muscles, but then something strange happened.  The more I worked out, the more satisfying that soreness felt.  

I am {by no means} trying to lose weight.  I'm just trying to lead a healthier lifestyle.  After I showed Josh my plan, he made a very great point:  by the time I earn my boots, working out everyday will be less of a chore and more of a habit.  Who can argue with that?

I have the safety net of having Sundays off.  If I miss a day for whatever reason, I can make it up. 

I don't meant to brag, but I'm really, really proud of myself for sticking with my plan.  Josh loves working out.  It is a non-issue for him.  I mean, the man actually works at the YMCA.  So it felt really nice when I beat him in the number of reps per ab set during 8 Minute Abs.  Talk about a David and Goliath story.  

So what about you?  Is there anything you need motivation for?  Do you think a chart will help?  Sound off below!


  1. Great idea! I should find something to motivate myself with.

  2. My boyfriend and I recently joined the same gym. We now have an activity to do together that does not cost much. :) I personally don't NEED anyone to keep me motivated to work out but it is nice to have him there with me now.


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