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Guest Post from Cat @ Confessions of a Recovering Sugar Addict

Posted Aug 31 2012 11:00am

Hey there, friends! Since I am away in Italy and am currently increasing my knowledge in ancient Roman things (aka stuffing my face with fresh mozzarella, prosciutto, and pasta 24/7) I want to leave you with this wonderful guest post from Cat from Confessions of a Recovering Sugar Addict . Cat is a real sweetheart and wanted to talk about something I think we all face from time to time: staying motivated when you feel like all your hard work isn’t turning out any results. I know I often struggle with this, so you probably do to! So, without further ado, here’s Cat!
Hi everyone! My name is Cat, and I blog over at Confessions of a Recovering Sugar Addict .

My past with food is pretty grim. I struggled with an eating disorder for most of high school and college, and that negative inner monologue never quite goes away. I will always consider myself in recovery from disordered eating, even now that I have gained weight, and am pretty healthy. Lately, I have been trying to tone up and loose a few lbs, a dangerous undertaking for anyone with an ED past.

I started really working on my body about two months ago. I can tell that things are really firming up and inches are starting coming off, but I just don’t really see the difference. I guess the trick is to try not to get frustrated the lack of observable change. Here are some things that I try to remember, and you can too if you ever feel like all your hard work is for nothing.

Just because the scale doesn’t change, doesn’t mean your body isn’t changing. I have noticed that although the scale doesn’t seem to want to budge more than a pound in either direction, my muscles are more noticeable, my body feels tighter over all and I know I am getting stronger. Look for those types of changes in yourself, and celebrate them!

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Focus on the things your body can do. Instead of dwelling in the negative, ie. I can’t run two miles straight without stopping, or I haven’t lost any weight in 3 weeks, focus on what has improved. Maybe you can hold a plank for a minute, and you used to struggle with 30 seconds. Maybe you can do 20 Burpees in a row without stopping. Maybe you are getting better at that new Zumba rountine you thought you’d never get the hang of. Don’t loose sight of those amazing improvements because you are dwelling on only the negative.

Imagine yourself as you want to be. Never underestimate the power of positive thinking. Your mind is your biggest motivator. If you spend your day thinking about all of the things you are not, how do you think you will feel at the end of the day? Tired, rundown, depressed, unmotivated? Now, if you imagined your life and your goals exactly how you want them to be, would you be more motivated to do the work required to get there? Duh! So, hang that picture of the Olympic marathoner off your treadmill, picture yourself holding that college diploma. Whatever your goals may be, they are attainable, as long as you believe they are. The only thing holding you back is yourself.

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Empower yourself. Ask for what you need. If you need support from friends and loved ones, ask for it. If my goal was to loose 50 lbs, and my family was only buying processed food, I would either buy my own food, or ask them to support me, by buying healthier food. It is not a sign of weakness to ask for what you need. In fact, I see it as a sign of strength. No one can do everything themselves. Ask for what you need, you might be surprised at how accommodating and supportive people can be.

Reward yourself.  Rewarding yourself for all of your effort and hard work can be as simple as just saying thank you, and taking a second to soak in a compliment, instead of just brushing it off. Giving yourself a manicure or treating yourself to a new pair of running shoes is a great reward for a job well done. Everyone deserves a reward, and not just when you reach a goal. Reward yourself for the steps you are taking towards that goal too. You just might motivate yourself to push a little harder.

I am, by no means, an expert on health and fitness. I am learning more about my health and body everyday and it makes me sad when I see and hear about people focused on the scale, or putting themselves down for not reaching a goal. I used to be one of those people. I used to be a slave to my scale, getting on it everyday, and letting that number determine my self-worth. I, and for that matter you too, are not defined by the number on the scale, or your perceived failures. You are defined by the effort you put into each day, and the experiences you get out of it.

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