The Magic in the Action-Motivation Loop:
In the world of fitness, the pursuit of our goals often begins with an unspoken promise to ourselves: "I'll start when I feel motivated." It's a familiar refrain that many of us have echoed at some point in our fitness journeys. We believe that motivation is the magical force that will propel us towards our fitness goals. However, what if I told you that the key to success isn't in waiting for motivation to strike, but in taking action right now? Taking action can create motivation through a psychological phenomenon known as the "action-motivation feedback loop." This concept suggests that when you take action, even if you don't initially feel motivated, the act of doing something can stimulate and increase your motivation.
Here's how it works:
Initiation of Action: You decide to start a task or take a small step toward your goal, even if you don't feel particularly motivated at the moment. This initial action can be as simple as getting your fall starter pass, booking a fitness class, or signing up for the 16-week weight loss challenge.
Small Wins: As you take little tiny action steps, you may experience small achievements or "wins." These could be going for a fitness walk, attending a class, or journaling your fitness goals for the season. These small wins provide a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, which can boost your motivation - and it is important each day to acknowledge your small wins.
Positive Feedback Loop: When you see the results of your actions and experience positive outcomes, your brain releases dopamine, a neurotransmitter associated with pleasure and reward. This surge of dopamine reinforces the behavior, making you more likely to repeat it in the future. This positive feedback mechanism can create a positive association between taking action and feeling motivated. Think about when you come to a fitness class. Attending one class won’t get you to your weight loss or fitness goal, but it will make you feel better for the day.
Momentum: As you continue to take very small doable action steps, you will experience more small wins, which will build momentum. Momentum can be a powerful motivator because it makes the task at hand seem less daunting and more achievable. It becomes easier to stay engaged and motivated when you see progress.
Increased Confidence: With each action you take, you gain confidence in your ability to make progress toward your goal. This confidence can boost your motivation as you start to believe that you can overcome challenges and achieve success. Focus on the Bigger Picture: Taking action helps shift your focus from the potential obstacles or negative thoughts that might have been hindering your motivation. Instead, you start concentrating on the positive outcomes you're working towards, which can further fuel your motivation.
Intrinsic Motivation: As you continue to take action and make progress, your motivation can evolve from being extrinsically driven (motivated by external rewards or pressures) to intrinsically driven (motivated by personal satisfaction and interest in the task itself). Intrinsic motivation tends to be more sustainable and enduring. This is why exercising to feel good versus exercising to lose weight is the key to success. If you exercised 3-6 days a week for no other reason than to feel good, IMAGINE the impact that would have on your overall goals.
Let’s Put This Into Practice:
Imagine you have a goal to shed 30 pounds. It's important to remember that this weight is not a definition of who you are; it's merely a collection of fat cells that we aim to shrink. In pursuit of this goal, the key is to strike a balance between burning a few more calories and consuming a few fewer calories. However, let's be honest, a goal of losing 30 pounds might not be the most motivating in and of itself. So, for a moment, let's set that specific outcome aside. Our primary objective here is to get you moving more, and the secret lies in your mindset.
Consider this: if your focus when attending fitness classes shifts from simply trying to lose weight to wanting to feel better, something magical happens. Suddenly, you're not going to a fitness class because you have to; you're going because you know it will make you feel better. And isn't improving your overall well-being, both inside and out, a worthwhile pursuit? Y
es, there will be days when dragging yourself to class feels like a challenge, but if you concentrate on how amazing you'll feel after the class or how great it is to connect with your fitness buddies, your motivation shifts. Your gym visits are no longer about losing weight; they revolve around enhancing your overall wellness. Now, picture this: as you keep attending classes and feeling better with each session, you look in the mirror four months down the line and realize, "Wow, those 30 pounds have melted away!" It's no longer about forcing yourself to exercise; it's about the joy of feeling good.
With this newfound motivation driving you, it's safe to say that achieving your goal of shedding those 30 pounds in just four months becomes a reality.
What small action steps can you take right now?
How about starting with our special fall promotion: The 1-Month Unlimited Starter Group Fitness Pass? Kickstart your fitness with a small step of getting your pass here and booking your first class. I am giving you a one-month Unlimited pass for only $99 to get you back into your routine this fall!
Already a member, but struggling to get back? Your small step would be to open up your app and book a class for this weekend. Don't overthink it. Book, show up, and have fun!
Register for the 16-week Weight Loss Boot Camp Challenge which will keep you motivated and focused every week over the next 4 months starting September 20th because each week we will be be focusing on our action steps and plans to propel us forward. https://innerfit.thinkific.com/courses/16weekchallenge
Don't Live Near the Studio? Looking for Online Classes? The 16-Week Weight Loss Challenge includes 2 Online Weight Loss Boot Camps each week that you can do with us LIVE or follow along with the recordings.
To Bring It All Together ... Taking action creates motivation by kickstarting a feedback loop that involves small wins, positive reinforcement, increased confidence, and a shift in focus toward your goals. It's important to remember that waiting for motivation to strike before taking action may not always be effective.
Often, the best way to generate motivation is to start by taking small, consistent steps toward your goals, and motivation will follow as a result of your efforts.
Inner Fit is here to make fitness fun and help you feel better each day! Start your action steps with us and let's make the last 4 months of the year together amazing!
Coach Rachel Seay,
Owner of Inner Fit Studios