Some of us carry around a photo of ourselves in our purse when we thought we looked terrific size-wise. Others stick a current ‘gross size’ photo on the cooler door. It doesn’t matter what methods you use to keep yourself on track to reaching that precious ideal weight and fitness goal at Overland Park Boot Camp – just so long as it works.
But what about those poor folks who just can’t seem to find the motivation, no matter what? What can they do to keep going when the desire to give up seems to overwhelm them?
Motivation is a big subject when it comes to sports coaching these days. Some people just can’t seem to hold on to it or even get it in the first place, regardless of the fact they know exercising brings them a whole host of benefits such as making them:
- feel better both physically and mentally
- have more energy
- get a better night’s sleep
- have clearer skin and shinier hair
- less likely to develop problems with Diabetes II and blood pressure
So what does it take to make a couch potato into a gym bunny? Psychologists don’t have the answers but they do have the er, motivation to find out.
Psychologist Steven Bray at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada studied 127 first year students and found that only one third of them who’d been active at school stayed that way in their first year. He put the decline down to a change in social patterns.
“They get to be friends with people who are less active than they used to be. … And so there may be a culture of inactivity that starts to take place at first-year university,” he said.
He believes that this change into a sedentary lifestyle can happen at any crucial transition moment such as getting married, having kids, switching to a tougher job etc.
The moral here? Make exercise a priority and hang around with those who like to be active
Jochen Ziegelmann, a psychologist at Berlin’s Freie Universitat, looked at goal-setting and exercise. He found that when people came up with structured goals such as walking to a friend’s house every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, they accomplished their goal for longer than others who just vowed to exercise in their free time.
The moral here? Make concrete plans for your fitness schedule
We’ll bring you more interesting studies on motivation in our next post at Overland Park Boot Camp. In the meantime, think about the above – if you can make yourself…