June was a crazy month for me. I left my job of 3 years where I worked from home to go to a steady 9-5 corporate gig here in Denver. I traveled back to Boston for my bridal shower and bachelorette party which turned into a hectic but fun 6 days away. And truly the crunch of wedding planning has hit as well. I swear any minute Matt and I have together we are making some kind of decision about the wedding. When life has hit me like this in the past, usually I would let something fall by the wayside. Typically being going to the gym and maintaining my diet. Somehow, that didn’t happen this time (well… aside from partaking in as much beer and clam chowder as I could while in New England). This, has really got me thinking about the idea of momentum.
When I started job hunting in the spring, I also realized a major transition was ahead of me. And keeping that in mind, I knew I didn’t want to lose the good work out habits I had just started to develop. That prompted me to make some (unknowingly) great decisions. 1.) I started tracking every work out. This may seem a little lame, but I literally put a star on my calendar every time I exercise. And, I always list what I did that day.. Boxing, boot camp, running or personal training. I ALWAYS write it down. And 2.) I began working out before 9am and after 5pm. Knowing that once I got a job in an office, an 11am boot camp class would no longer be realistic. I had set myself up for success, and it really has paid off.
I applied for my new position back in March, went through two sets of interviews and finally got an offer in May to start mid June. Though this just might be the longest hiring process I had ever experienced, I am actually grateful it took so long. It was during that time that I really created some significant gym momentum. I turned tracking my workouts into a bit of a game. Sometimes I would strive for just 3 workouts per week and other times I would push myself to get to the gym 7 days in a row. Though June was crazy, I worked out 26 out of 30 days- #nailedit. And I swear, it didn’t take that much effort. I no longer second guess going to a work out, I’ve stopped hitting the snooze button to sleep through a 6am class or have never opted for happy hour instead of a gym session (okay, so sometimes I go to happy hour before a workout.. But I still go!)
And, when I finally started my new job, scheduling my workouts was so easy. For the most part, I was attending the exact same classes at the exact same time prior to starting my position. There was no major change in my workout routine, making this transition almost seamless. I am still maintaining 6 workouts per weeks with ease. Who knew putting a couple simple parameters around working out would lead to such success.
This also has made me think about the difference between Motivation and Momentum. I feel like many discussions on healthy lifestyle and gym habits start with the topic motivation. Don’t get me wrong, being motivated is part of it. But I think motivation and momentum go hand in hand. For me, I think of motivation as your ‘why’ while momentum as your ‘how’. Obviously, my motivation is clearly my wedding day and looking great in bridal gown, while my momentum consisted of a couple rules to get me going. Putting these two pieces together has really made me feel super confident about keeping this healthy lifestyle thing going.
Though I am not here to dole out workout advice, I felt compelled to share this particular success in hopes that my experience creating ‘momentum’ may help one of you a bit. Summer is in full swing… meaning it’s vacation, BBQ and beer season. All great things no doubt, but they were also things that would throw me off my workout game. And, I just don’t see that happening for me, which is a huge step forward. So, I challenge you to give this idea of momentum vs. motivation some thought. Maybe putting some effort into building your own momentum will lead to some great success for you as well.