A lady never reveals her weight, or is that age? Either way…when I graduated college in December 2011, I realized that I was the heaviest I had ever been. I’ve been a gym member since I was in high school, but senior year I kicked it up, lost weight, and kept it steady during college. But after turning 21, I gained it back, plus more (I blame it on the booze plus being lazy). This past October of 2011, I went through a bad break up and decided that I needed some good catharsis, because talking my friends’ ears off just wasn’t cutting it anymore.
I started going to the gym more with a couple of friends to start the process, but I just wasn’t as motivated as I should have been. They do always say that working out is better with a buddy. My motivation started more when I began to realize that my double-digit jeans were getting too tight. Considering the breakup, I got depressed and wondered who else would be attracted to me if I was so big. After I looked at recently tagged Facebook pictures of myself, I realized that something needed to change.
I started trying out different classes and figured out a routine for me. I’m lucky enough to have a job with flexible hours that allows me to work from home. I won’t bore you with the details, but I’ve become an avid fan of cycling, Zumba, the elliptical, bodyworks, and Pilates. I make sure that I go to the gym every day and take at least one class (on Tuesdays I take Zumba, then cycling, ending with Pilates). It sounds crazy, but to me, it’s FUN. Working out doesn’t have to be boring and painful; you just need to find what kind of routine motivates you. My motivation lies in classes that are fun and make me sweat so much that I leave looking like I jumped in the pool.
There are two other big motivators. Let’s start with encouragement. Lately, fellow gym-goers have approached me to tell me that I look great and that I work so hard. It feels SO GOOD to hear that! That’s motivation, coupled with family/friends also being supportive and noticing my hard work. The second is simple: seeing/feeling results. I have a pair of jeans that I haven’t been able to fit into since I was at my lightest about 3 years ago. My goal when I started was to fit into them by the time a friend came to visit in March. Mission accomplished! They’re now even a little bit big on me.
Here comes the diet section: I don’t believe in diets. My philosophy is that you shouldn’t deprive your body of something that it wants, because you’re going to indulge ten-fold later. Instead, give yourself a small or low-fat portion of what you want. You satisfy your craving while also lessening the chances of expanding your waistline.
What should you take from my experience? Take a minute and consider the kinds of workout regimens that will motivate YOU. When you’re exercising, it’s 100% all about YOU. I’m a firm believer that if you want something, you’ll do anything to get it. I wanted to lose weight, and I’ve lost 22 pounds after about 4 months, and I’m still going strong. What do YOU want?
Have you lost your motivation? If so, What did you do to get it back?
Gabrielle Matthews is a recent college graduate from the University of Central Florida, where she studied Marketing and English writing. She loves animals, exercising, vegetarian cooking, and has 3 pet birds.
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