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    NIXY72   23,354
20,000-24,999 SparkPoints

Are You In Need of Motivation?

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Thursday, July 12, 2012

In my never ending quest to motivate myself to lose this weight that I've packed on over the past too-many years, I have attempted a wide variety of methods to achieve this goal. I've praised myself, belittled myself, rewarded myself, taunted myself, made promises to myself, bribed myself, and convinced myself over and over (when all else failed) to keep trying.

I am currently on the keep-trying track.

My weight bounces around like a flubber yo-yo. I try not to mind the scale so much though I still weigh myself every day... not to be overly frustrated when it is often obviously making fun of my efforts, but to know if I'm slipping back into bad habits (or like all the women out there, to be forewarned when I'm approaching "that time of the month")

(photo courtesy of )

But I have recently encountered a few things that ARE working. And I've realized that most, if not all of them, are "outside" influences. Now, I completely commend you, dear reader, if you are the type of person to one day step on the scale and say, "Oh my, where did those 20 (30, 40, 50, etc) extra pounds come from?" and then put your mind to it to successfully lose the weight, and then ACTUALLY lose the weight. Bravo. However, if you're like me, you "try" and then "try again", and then eat an entire chocolate cake, and then "try again", and lose 10 pounds, reward yourself with martinis, gain 5 pounds back, then "try again"... you get the idea.

So here are a few motivational concepts that have actually served me well... these range from the obvious to the somewhat obscure, from accessing your inner drive to playing with external gadgets. Perhaps you will find something that speaks to you as well!

1. Shake up your world:

Try something new. In our day to day lives, boredom sets in and things become mundane and uninspiring. Find something fun to try - go rollerskating, bowling, archery, gardening, rebounding, skipping, horseback riding, hooping, tai chi, water aerobics, snorkelling, rock climbing, chair yoga, ballroom dancing... the list is endless. If you don't want to take a class and possibly make a fool out of yourself, YouTube is an amazing resource of instructional videos where you can hide away until you're good enough to show your new talents in public. Besides, you might just find your newest passion that excites you back into *wanting* to be active.

2. Get support (Strength in Numbers):

SparkPeople is an AMAZING gathering of like-minded and similar-goaled individuals. Where else are you going to find this many people all over the world that have the same purpose coming together? Be bold. Un-private your pages. Say hello to 100 new members by leaving them a welcome note. Join teams. Take part in challenges. Read and comment on blogs. Wish people happy birthday. Randomly give goodies. Reach out. You will be stunned at the amazing friends you will make. I LOVE my SP friends. They keep me honest, they encourage me, they are there when no one else is. And with a little bit of effort, you can have a cheering squad that would fill an entire stadium. My squad? It's currently 686 friends strong. And those are ALL current, active members (I've culled out of my friend list over 400 more people who have "disappeared" from SP since I've joined). And it doesn't take forever either. I spend 10-30 minutes per day doing everything I need to on SP. That includes tracking my food, fitness, reading articles, posting on pages & teams, answering SparkMail... and let me assure you that it's time very well used.

3. Set a bunch of attainable goals:

Set a goal that's not impossible and make it a firm date. Vacation? Wedding? Reunion? Party? Beach? Promise yourself that you'll go no matter what but use the time inbetween wisely. Many of us avoid public appearances when we feel we don't look our best. But, life is for living. So the goal is to feel great and enjoy life even if we haven't hit our ultimate weight goal. Currently, my next goal is 6 weeks away. We are having a "famous 80's" party in which each person attending must come dressed up as an 80's icon. I wanted to go as someone fun, iconic, and have a costume I couldn't "HIDE" in. So my choice? Elvira: Mistress of the Dark. Now, I just have to do my best to make sure I look as amazing as I can to "pull off" or rather, "pull on" that dress...

4. Reward Yourself

Set up a reward system for your weight loss efforts. It doesn't have to be monetary (as in buying stuff) but maybe there are things you feel that are special rewards in your life... pedicures? new clothes? time alone with a good book? a night out with the girls? Set yourself an appropriate reward for every 5 or 10 pound goal met... and then make sure to celebrate each milestone. I had an old list once upon a time but have no idea what I've done with it so here is my new list:
10 pound loss - buy a bouquet of fresh flowers (done!)
20 pound loss - pedicure (done!)
25 pound loss - buy a fabulous hat
30 pound loss - mani/pedi/facial
35 pound loss - round one of cleaning out closets - buy 3 new pieces for wardrobe
40 pound loss - play hookey for a whole day: relax - no work, no email, no chores
45 pound loss - mani/pedi & fabulous spa treatment
50 pound loss - throw out all old underwear, go buy new, sexy fabulous replacements
55 pound loss - play hookey for a whole day: do something fun and exciting
60 pound loss (in ONE-DERLAND) - round two of cleaning out closets - small wardrobe shopping spree
65 pound loss - day at the spa :)
70 pound loss - mini 4-day vacation, something spontaneous! Vegas anyone?
77 pound loss - GOAL MET - last round of cleaning out closets - replacement wardrobe here I come!

5. Let Others Reward You

Whether you reminisce about your girl guide/scout days and love to collect badges or actually want to be PAID to work out, (yup, you heard me right) there are a remarkable amount of gadgets, apps, and sites to really get you motivated.

I have a FitBit (see my blog at
for more info on this handy little tracker) which keeps me climbing stairs and walking to get my next level badge. ... I was a brownie by the way with every imaginable badge... Fitbit emails me with fun awards (see image above) when I hit an mile/height achievement and it actually does keep me going as I try to get higher and higher levels. It's also a very handy dandy tool that has not only a pedometer and an elevation counter but also a sleep tracker and a dynamic calorie calculator. Gotta love it.

I also signed up for EarndIt today after I was introduced to it in my "PureWow" email. (PureWow is a cool new daily email for women that keeps you up to date with the latest and greatest in health, style, travel, recipes, etc - sign up at ) I'm not usually a "fashionista" but I have to say that I love their content so far even though most of it is based heavily towards US residents (which I am not).

EarndIt, however, is a new free site that syncs with a bunch of popular fitness trackers (including FitBit) that rewards your "good behaviour" by granting you points that you can cash in for things like gift cards and charitable donations. EarndIt works in tandem with Nike+, MapMyFitness, RunKeeper, EveryTrail, BodyMedia|Fit, Foursquare and Garmin! The best thing about the site is that if you're hooked already into one of these apps, there's no extra work. The app feeds the site directly so you don't have to enter in any extra information - just join a few challenges and off you go! It's also International-friendly which is a major plus for us non-Americans.

This intro to EarndIt got me thinking... if there's one site that rewards you for working out, there must be more... and indeed there is: check this link
for information on more apps and sites that rewards you for exercising including:

GymPact - lets you basically "bet on yourself" to reach your goals in order to get cash rewards - but beware... if you don't make your goals set, you have to pay up!

Fitocracy - a social network based competition that turns "fitness into a game" where you can create groups and challenges and earn points and badges.

Switch2Health - another fitness tracking site that offers deals and rewards from major businesses across the US

Nexercise - an iPhone app that also provides real rewards and badges for activity. Also mostly USA based.

So whatever your original motivation may have been way back when, I know that it's probably wained and changed a million times over. That's okay. Find something new to motivate you...

Or better yet...


Member Comments About This Blog Post:
ANGELA12372 8/18/2012 4:30PM

    Wow!!! I love your blogs!! All I have to do is come and read one and boom you have inspired and motivated me!! I will be checking some of the sites out that you mentioned. Anything at this point to get myself back on track would be a good thing!!! Thank you!!! emoticon emoticon

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SLENDERMAMA1 8/17/2012 1:10PM

    Great blog !

Live life large and make it count. You only get to do it once :)

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CCADIE 8/16/2012 2:29PM

    Three things: 1) I am obsessed with my Fitbit - I love it like a pet. 2) I'm stealing some of your motivation rewards - especially the days playing hookey and 3) You are AMAZING!

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MAMA_CD 8/13/2012 7:34PM

    Well done blog, put a smile on my face emoticon

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EMILYDOODLE 8/7/2012 3:45PM

  very inspirational! emoticon

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CHERIONE 8/2/2012 9:09PM

    Loved it...great inspiring! Thanks! emoticon

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YOUNG2012 7/31/2012 3:35PM

    It's amazing how upbeat and inspirational you are! Thank you for your posts and blogs!!


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IACTA_ALEA_EST 7/30/2012 10:17AM

    Well Holy handgranades Nixy, you are a powder keg of motivation.

CANCER DOESNT STAND A CHANCE! Reading your blog made me laugh and think, yeah! I don't have to take failure so seriously! It's an experiment! I think I need to squeeze in a lot more hurrah time.

Thanks for a well written blog - I'm rooting for you!

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DKA768 7/28/2012 6:46PM

    Great blog!

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BLKLILY 7/28/2012 2:08PM

    Best Blog Ever... emoticon

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YOU-GLOW-GIRL 7/27/2012 5:01PM

    I actually am in need of motivation right now and I found this blog so fun and inspirational to read! Thanks for sharing!! :)

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GETSLIM121 7/27/2012 4:44PM

    I absolutely enjoyed it!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SHASHA929 7/25/2012 12:14AM

    Totally AWESOME. The next time I run, I'll think that I stole something......LOL.
Have a wonderfully Blessed day!

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    Thanks for the motivation. I can tell you have taken a great deal of time to think this through and it sounds like you have found yours!!! CONGRATS and keep up the good work my friend!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PHOTOMUM 7/23/2012 9:47PM

    You make a lot of sense. Gave me an idea. I have a wedding to go to in Oct. I think I would like to wear a dress I have that is just a little too small (or I'm a little too big) I would really like to wear it then. My new goal.



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AMBER281 7/23/2012 6:25PM

    Fantastic blog!!!

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THEBETH43 7/22/2012 9:39AM

    Fantastic blog! Thanks for sharing your uplifting thoughts & links.


Comment edited on: 7/22/2012 9:41:10 AM

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HEEVENLEE1983 7/21/2012 11:30PM

  Just found your blog:) Thanks so much for your inspiration new here so every bit helps mind if I add you as a friend?Again thanks for the inspiration emoticon

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GOIN4GR8 7/21/2012 7:00PM

    I just ordered THREE FitBits due to your review ... one for me and both of my sisters! Thank you for the great info!

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MALAIKAB 7/21/2012 5:06PM

    Wow thanks for this. I will definitely be coming back to read it again when I'm needing the motivation. You are so inspiring. Can't wait to see your Elvira pics-I'm sure they'll be amazing!! emoticon

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PURPLEPEONY 7/21/2012 12:14PM

    Thanks for the motivation! Today I really need it! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LIBELULITA 7/21/2012 5:54AM

    Brilliant brilliant blog....and much needed by me at the moment so i thankyou for inspiring me. Never ever give up emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JITZUROE 7/20/2012 12:55PM

    Awesome blog and chocked full of motivation (which I needed today!)
Thank YOU!

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THEIS58 7/20/2012 12:16PM

    Run like you stole something is HILARIOUS!!!

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1GODGIRL 7/20/2012 9:35AM

    I loved this. Some of the pictures cracked me up! emoticon

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LUKENEMISAUNT 7/20/2012 7:15AM

  Keep on going!

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MANDELOVICH 7/19/2012 12:01AM

    Great tips and excellent links. Thanks for the motivation, the great reminders, and the great links!

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KATIEGARCIA2 7/18/2012 8:33PM

  I LOVE this!!!

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CAROL494 7/18/2012 7:12PM

  emoticon emoticon

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LM1272 7/18/2012 6:32PM

    I also like the photo "run like you stole something" so funny.

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RUNRAYRAYRUN 7/18/2012 4:27PM

    "Run like you stole something" I laughed out loud reading that! Thanks for the inspiration today!

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STEFANIESHERE 7/18/2012 3:54PM

    I love your 50 pound goal! I was putting away laundry the other night and my underwear could use an overhauling, but I wanted to wait until I loose a bit more so that I can get the right I want to not only get a smaller size but get some that are super cute! Thanks so much for the blog!

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DANIYAHMOM 7/18/2012 2:56PM


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CHANGING-VICKI 7/18/2012 12:46PM

  emoticon emoticon

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GOING-STRONG 7/18/2012 12:16AM

    Thanks for sharing the links to those websites... going to check em out!


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TODAYIAM 7/17/2012 11:13PM

    I feel like I constantly need motivation and then I wonder why I don't lose weight and things just spiral from there.. thanks for the blog!

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SAMI199 7/17/2012 10:44PM


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RKMHOYLE 7/17/2012 10:40PM

    Very helpful - thanks!

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JANEMARIE77 7/17/2012 10:38PM

    Great blog thanks

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REENIE131 7/17/2012 9:07PM

    So true..and so cute at the same time!

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THESLIMMERME1 7/17/2012 8:18PM

    Very down to earth - inspirational comments.
I like the reference to 'rewards' for effort rather than 'weight' lost - cause what are we going to do once we are at goal? However, the effort will still be required to maintain! emoticon

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JILLIAN40 7/17/2012 1:03PM

    Thanks for your blog. I just have a small suggestion, rather than rewarding yourself for pounds lost which we know doesn't always reflect our hard work, reward yourself for what you do. In other words, if you have eaten well or worked out for a given period of time reward yourself for that, because that is something you do have control over, unlike the actual weight loss, which as we know doesn't always reflect the work we've done.

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HAPPY0408 7/17/2012 11:38AM

    emoticon emoticon

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DOBSONSM 7/17/2012 8:57AM


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FORESTDREAM 7/17/2012 8:17AM

    Good day to you. :) Thank you for sharing. I really enjoyed your blog today. I love your background too. :) I'm slowly working my way back into this place. :) Good luck to you on your journey. :) Take care. El :)

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ROSE-100 7/17/2012 2:21AM


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FATHINSN 7/17/2012 12:54AM

    I like the list - I think I'm getting much better progress in SparkPeople because of the community - supportt & challenges :D
I'm still learning how to reward myself as it's so tempting to get food instead of non-food.

And the last picture, I LOL when I read the donkey's dialog :D

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WOLF-SPIRIT 7/17/2012 12:17AM

    What a great blog!!! WOW Thanks so much. You are an inspired person creating an virtual community of inspired people around you. I hope you don't mind I've added you as Friend. Stopping by your page will be something like getting a daily dose of vitamin D ... it's so sunny out here. :) Amazing! Love it!!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LUCINDARW 7/16/2012 10:49PM

    The blog is mind boggling! Thanks for all the information, motivation and tools to keep us going towards our goals. Good luck with your goals! Lucinda

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LESLIELENORE 7/16/2012 10:48PM

    I love all the info you packed into a single blog!! I'll have to check into some of those sites.

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Disclaimer: Weight loss results will vary from person to person. No individual result should be seen as a typical result of following the SparkPeople program.