There are those times, when you just feel like the world is against you. You have goals, but somehow life just doesn’t work out the way you want it, things keep getting in the way and you feel like you just cannot stick to what you wanted to do or feel like should be doing. When life makes it hard, it is easy to lose motivation – and even give up on your goals.
I had the same happen to me this last month. I moved back to Taiwan for one more year at university – and after an amazing summer of lots of workouts and healthy meals, feeling amazing in my skin, I lost all motivation for fitness. I was constantly really busy with work and studying and had much less free time. and when I did have time I was usually pretty tired – it got pretty hard to find time and energy for gym.
The weather was also unbearably hot, the temperature kept sneaking above 36°C even in the end of September, with humidity being above the roof as well. My body is pretty good with dry heat, but this humid heat was killing me. I felt like I was sweating more than what was humanly possible and it all left me feeling irritated, weak and completely lost my appetite as well.
Above all this, at university I don’t have access to a proper, nice gym, Our gym cannot even be considered a proper weight room, it is way too small, seriously ill equipped, always overcrowded and awfully hot. Lots of times when I did decide to go I simply couldn’t workout, because each pair of that one set of dumbbells were used, along with the two Smith machines and one back machines – leaving me with literally nothing to workout with, having to wait 15-20 minutes for a pair of dumbbells in a hot crowded room with no other options (barbell, kettlebell, etc) available.
I felt it was all impossible, I felt that all the circumstances were just against me – I was just really irritated and annoyed, and frustrated with myself for not being able to live the healthy life I love so much, because of all this. I lost all motivation.
Then as October rolled around I decided enough was enough. I am not going to sit around complaining but I will do something about it.
First of all I wanted to take care of my nutrition. Even though I still didn’t have a good appetite, I made an effort to make healthy meals and eat them at the right time. If you don’t give your body the proper foods, how could you expect it to have enough energy for sports and all? So I went to Carrefour and bought an electric pan cooker so that I can cook and did a big grocery shopping, filling up with healthy foods. I had to get many more containers for the fridge and label them all up (#dormlife) but once I did that I finally had everything to start taking care of my meals again. I started cooking omelettes, sunny side up eggs, protein pancakes for breakfast, my favourite chicken and beef meals for lunch and doing all I could in a dorm. I am now officially back to cooking and meal prepping, making it a priority of mine to prepare whole, healthy foods instead of eating out, and I swear it makes such a big difference! I can feel my energy levels rising and feeling much better in my skin already.
Secondly, I decided to make more effort about the gym: if I want to get proper workouts in, then I will have to go to another gym with proper equipment, space and air conditioning at least a few times a week. It takes a lot of extra time and money, but I decided to invest in it for the sake of my mental and physical wellbeing. Going to that gym 2-3 times a week and working out on campus on the rest of the days already makes a difference and the good workouts I had there already helped me gain my motivation back.
In the end it is all about sitting down and thinking about what causes your loss of motivation: what are the factors that hinder you and what can you do to change them. Life can be pretty overwhelming, so if you break down the situation to all these different aspects and try to overcome them one by one it will already feel so much more achievable. Yes, you will have to get out of your comfort zone and make some changes. It takes a lot more extra effort and conscious decisions, but trust me, it is worth it if your goals are really important for you. Always try to think about future in the long run and not just what you want and how you feel that day – and conquer all your laziness and negative feelings to make yourself feel better not just that day, but for all the days, weeks and months to come.