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Motivation Articles  ›  Picking Yourself Back Up

25 Ways to Get Back on Track Today

Don't Give Up on Your Goals!

-- By Nicole Nichols, Fitness Instructor & Health Educator
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8. Share your goals. Whether you post them on the Message Boards or share them with a friend, you’ll be more accountable.

9. Exercise for 10 minutes. Jump rope, march in place, or do some crunches. Small amounts do add up to something big!

10. Find a buddy. Get support from friends, whether you need someone to listen or a mentor to give you ideas and encouragement.

11. Take a walk. Don’t worry about how long or far you go—just get out there!

12. Create a motivational collage. Include pictures of your goal and reasons why you want to get there.

13. Go shopping for some healthy foods. Use this shopping list for ideas.

14. Check the nutrition facts before you go out to eat. That way, you can make an informed choice.

15. Ride your bike. Even a leisurely ride has benefits for your body and mind.

16. Work in the yard. Gardening and yard work is a great way to add activity to your day.

17. Take the stairs. Even if this is the only thing you do all day, you’ll feel stronger for it.

18. Rack up those SparkPoints! You earn them for every healthy task you do on the site—talk about motivating! Aim for a certain milestone, such as 100 points, and then reward yourself with a SparkGoodie!

19. Listen to an inspirational song. Better yet, make a playlist of them so you can turn to it whenever you need a boost.

20. Re-start your SparkPeople program. Sometimes it’s easier to get back on track when you have a clean slate.

21. Measure your portions. It’s a simple way to learn how much you’re eating.

22. Eat a piece of fruit. Even if 5-9 servings of fruit and vegetables sounds impossible to you, one is doable.

23. Slow down during meals. You’ll be less likely to overeat and more likely to enjoy your meal.

24. Play! What kids call “play,” we often call “exercise.” Play a sport, a game, or use the playground equipment to bring the fun back into fitness.

25. Learn something new. Sometimes simply taking a quiz or reading an article about nutrition, fitness, or health can change your mindset and get you back on track.

In tennis, losing one point isn’t the end of the world. It happens to the best of them. In fact, if you can consistently win a few more points that you lose, you may end up in the hall of fame. With healthy eating and exercising, as long as you’re consistently out-stepping your steps back, you’re ahead of the game. If you expect perfection (and many of us do), you’re setting yourself up for disappointment and guilt.

You CAN get back on track today. Even if you’re moving slowly, you’ll be moving in the right direction!
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About The Author

Nicole Nichols Nicole Nichols
Nicole was named "America's Top Personal Trainer to Watch" in 2011. A certified personal trainer and fitness instructor with a bachelor's degree in health education, she loves living a healthy and fit lifestyle and helping others do the same. Her DVDs "Total Body Sculpting" and "28 Day Boot Camp" (a best seller) are available online and in stores nationwide. Read Nicole's full bio and blog posts.

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Member Comments

  • just starting out again and this is what i need to help me - 3/14/2014 9:29:11 AM
  • I needed to read this right now! I really liked the part about expecting perfection sets you up for failure. I need to remember this, and that it is ok if I go off track ever now and then. Just because I don't eat in my calorie range for a day or two, or don't work out every day, doesn't mean I've failed and need to quit all together. It just means I'm human, and I can try again! - 1/20/2014 8:44:31 PM
  • Joining Curves did it for me. Paying money to work out is a great motivator. - 1/7/2014 8:35:15 PM
  • Tracking everything I eat is a major help,makes me realize how much I am actually eating and keeps track of calories - 1/5/2014 12:21:50 PM
  • Drinking the water always helps me to get back into the swing of things. - 1/2/2014 5:10:42 PM
  • Thanks! I needed this. - 11/23/2013 6:00:13 AM
  • I think this is one of the most helpful articles I've read on Spark People when it comes to losing your way and getting back on track. I have used and still do use most of these tips and they really do help. I come back to this one often.... it's a keeper!

    Thank you! - 11/17/2013 9:13:55 AM
  • I love this article! We can not demand perfection of ourselves - it will have the opposite effect, we are only human! So, let's be kind to ourselves and remember we are not "on a diet" but rather a journey through life. We should help ourselves and others! - 10/31/2013 5:57:30 PM
  • GLADDAY
    Reading this article really "woke me up". I've been especially tired for the last few weeks due to work stress, and haven't worked out or tracked my food intake at all. I will work out at least 10 minutes before going to work today, and will pick one other item from the suggestions to get back on track . (The work stress is not going away, so I have to figure out a way to keep moving forward in spite of it.) - 10/31/2013 4:36:39 AM
  • SILVERSPARROW04
    Ok no more sitting around myself that I will work out tomorrow and then never actually do it. I will work out tonight. As soon as I get home I will jump into my work out clothes and get it done \o/. Thank-you for the article I definitely needed it. - 10/18/2013 4:01:22 PM
  • really needed this article...I have gotten SO far out of control again in the past about a year due to stress, that I need to start ALL over again. Have gained even a little more than I was originally at and this article simply snapped my garter so to speak. Not sure how to reset everything here to start again, but will work on figuring that out... - 9/22/2013 8:09:21 AM
  • I just keep focused on the long term goal. I KNOW I am going to screw up once in a while. I do not let it bother me. - 8/29/2013 5:46:12 PM
  • Spark People has helped me get back on track, and stay on it for more than my usual 2 weeks. Thank You for a GREAT website. - 8/20/2013 7:15:10 AM
  • I sooo needed this article....time to get back on track!!! - 8/19/2013 4:55:26 AM
  • I'm returning to good habits; not 'starting over' because life gets lived daily, regardless of what I do with each day, but RETURNING. Today. - 8/16/2013 8:37:20 PM