Motivation vs dedication

I keep getting asked how I stay motivated.
Well, honestly, I don’t really consider myself to be motivated. Motivation is only what gets you started. Everyone is motivated on Jan 1, then that motivation is gone and people are back to their old habits by the 2nd or 3rd week of January. Motivation is fleeting and somewhat cyclical. You cannot rely on it to get you to goal.

Dedication is what gets you to your goal, whether weight loss related or not. It’s the realization that there is no other option if you want to succeed. Like exercise – not doing it is not an option. I have taken that choice out. Exercise will get me to my goal, therefore I make it part of my day. Now, I do enjoy most exercise now, and that is a really important part to staying dedicated. Nobody wants to do something they hate day in and day out (like a job??). But, if there is something I don’t like – I won’t do it, and don’t want to waste my time on it. *But*, I am willing to give something a chance. I try a lot of different types of exercise, like Taebo (didn’t like), kickboxing (want to like, but it’s not working out), strength training (love!!), biking (LOVE!!), walking (would rather bike), jogging (liking). During the winter I do different cardio DVDs through Netflix. I end up sending most back after 1 or 2 tries because I know right away that they aren’t a fit for me.

Food is the same way. I am dedicated not to weight loss so much as to giving my body the nutrition it needs in forms that I enjoy, with weight loss being a result. I dedicate my time to creating meals that fulfill both of those. Does it take some time? Yes, but it’s now a part of my life and easy to do.

Motivation comes and goes. I fall off the path at times, or wallow around in the “Pass the pastries, please”. There are those times when I get all gung-ho and ready to really push it super hard, and then it fades and just becomes the day-to-day weight loss journey. The really pushing part is probably not sustainable for me for a long period, and finding a balance between what is realistic, what I can do and what I am willing to do is the key.

Not sure if that’s helpful to anyone or not LOL!

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8 thoughts on “Motivation vs dedication

  1. thewwchick (aka: Heather)

    Motivation flew out the window a long time ago for me. lol I am a VERY determined person. That’s the only thing that keeps me ticking at this point.

  2. Jessica @ Pudget: Losing Weight On A Budget

    Thanks for the great post! I love the idea of using Netflix for exercise videos.

  3. Jen, a priorfatgirl

    What a great post!!! I never thought about the difference between the two; between motivation & dedication. I too feel as though I'm struggling and keep asking where people get their motivation from. Maybe I need to readjust what I'm looking for, what I want to be dedicated to instead of what is going to "motivate" me.

  4. LTer4ever

    Great insight! I used to think I was self-motivated (I even used to put that on my resume), now I see that I am self-dedicated.

  5. Lynn Haraldson-Bering

    Helpful? More than you know. This post spoke to me not because of weight, but other personal issues. Thanks, Lori. And I really mean, thank you.

  6. debbyweighsin

    Yes, Lori, this is most excellent. That is the difference that I couldn’t put my finger on–the difference between how I was when I started and how I am now. I kinda sorta have realized this now and again, but this is so well put and so succinct. I will remember this.

  7. SeaShore

    This is a helpful post. I read it yesterday, thought about it, came back today to read it again.

    Thank you for posting it.

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