10 Effective Ways to Stay Motivated on Your Weight Loss Journey

Daniel Murphy // Dietitian, Cork // July 24

Struggling to stay motivated on your weight loss journey? You’re not alone. We all know how challenging it can be to stay focused and driven. In this article, we uncover 10 effective ways to stay motivated and keep the momentum going on your weight loss journey.

Weight Loss Motivation starts from setting realistic goals and a finding a source of accountability. We’ll explore aspects like the power of positive self-talk and visualisation techniques to keep your mind aligned with your goals. Additionally, we’ll provide you with tips on how to stay motivated when faced with setbacks and plateaus.

Whether you’re just starting out or have been on this weight loss journey for a while, these strategies are bound to help you stay motivated and on track. Personally, even starting to use terms like determination instead of motivation can help. Motivation comes and goes but if we’re determined we’ll keep going even if things get hard.

So step one, ditch the motivation, and aim for determination.

Weight Loss Motivation Goals

Table of Contents

The Importance of Motivation in Weight Loss

Motivation and Determination are the driving forces behind any successful weight loss journey. It’s what keeps us going when the going gets tough, and it’s what helps us push through the challenges and obstacles that inevitably arise. Without these, it’s all too easy to give up on our goals and fall back into old, unhealthy habits.

These are the key to staying focused, committed, and determined to reach our weight loss objectives. It’s the fuel that powers our actions and helps us stay on track, even when the scale doesn’t seem to be moving as quickly as we’d like. 

Weight Loss Motivation stems from a variety of sources, whether it’s a desire to improve our health, boost our self-confidence, or simply look and feel our best.


Set Clear and Achievable Goals- SMART

One of the most important steps in staying motivated on your weight loss journey is to set clear and achievable goals. When we have a specific, measurable target in mind, it gives us a sense of direction and purpose, and helps us stay focused on the task at hand.

“Not having a clear goal is like having a dart in your hand and no dart board to aim for.”

Instead of vague goals like “I want to lose weight,” try to be as specific as possible. For example, set a goal to add a protein source at each meal, include at least 2 veg sources at dinner or to be able to run a 5K without stopping. These types of goals are much more concrete and easier to track, which can help you stay motivated and on track.

It’s also important to make sure your goals are achievable. Setting unrealistic expectations can be discouraging and lead to frustration, which can ultimately undermine your motivation. 

Instead, break down your larger goals into smaller, more manageable steps that you can tackle one at a time. This will help you feel a sense of progress and accomplishment along the way, which can be a powerful motivator.


Smart Goals in Weight Loss Motivation

Find Your “Why"

Another key to staying motivated on your weight loss journey is to identify your “why– the deeper, more personal reasons that are driving you to make a change. What is it that you hope to achieve or gain from losing weight? Is it improved health, more energy, greater self-confidence, or something else entirely?

Once you’ve identified your “why,” take the time to really explore and reflect on it. Visualize what your life will be like once you’ve achieved your weight loss goals. How will you feel? What will you be able to do that you couldn’t do before? By connecting with the deeper, more emotional reasons behind your goals, you’ll be better equipped to stay motivated and push through the inevitable challenges.

One powerful tool for tapping into your “why” is to create a vision board. A vision board is a collage of images, pictures, and affirmations that represent your goals and aspirations. It can be a physical board or a digital one, and it serves as a constant reminder of what you’re working towards. Whenever you’re feeling discouraged or tempted to give up, take a moment to look at your vision board and reconnect with your deeper motivations.

Tips on Finding Your Why in Weight Loss

Track your Progress and Celebrate Small Victories

Tracking your progress is another crucial element of staying motivated on your weight loss journey. It’s important to have a clear sense of how far you’ve come and how close you are to reaching your goals. This can help you stay focused and inspired, even when the scale isn’t moving as quickly as you’d like.

There are a variety of ways to track your progress, from taking regular measurements and photos to keeping a food and exercise journal. Experiment with different methods and find what works best for you. And don’t forget to celebrate your small victories along the way! Whether it’s hitting a new weight-loss milestone or simply sticking to your healthy habits for a week straight, take the time to acknowledge your accomplishments and give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back.

Celebrating your progress can take many forms, from treating yourself to a new fitness outfit or a relaxing spa day, to sharing your achievements with friends and family. The key is to find ways to recognize and appreciate the hard work you’re putting in, which can help you stay motivated and inspired to keep going.

Surround Yourself with a Supportive Community

Surrounding yourself with a supportive community can be a game-changer when it comes to staying motivated on your weight loss journey. Having people in your corner who understand what you’re going through and can offer encouragement, advice, and accountability can be invaluable. 

Here are some ideas:

  • We find the Apex Nutrition Weight-loss support group in our app a great way to connect with like-minded individuals.
  • Friends or family members can be a great support in cooking meals and managing stress at home.
  • Local exercise groups like the 5k Park Runs are a great free way of getting in some activity. These are found in Tramore Valley Park and Ballincollig Regional Park in Cork every Saturday. There are also various other locations all around Ireland.

When you’re surrounded by people who share your goals and understand your challenges, it can be easier to stay motivated and keep pushing forward, even when the going gets tough.

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Mix Up Your Workouts and Try New Activities

Staying motivated on your weight loss journey also means keeping your workouts fresh and exciting. Doing the same routine day in and day out can quickly become tedious and demotivating, so it’s important to mix things up and try new activities.

Experiment with different types of exercise, such as:


Not only will this help you target different muscle groups and keep your body challenged, but it can also prevent boredom and keep your workouts feeling engaging and enjoyable. 

Additionally, consider trying new and unfamiliar activities, such as 

  • Rock climbing
  • Dance classes, 
  • or even a sport you’ve always wanted to try. 

Stepping outside of your comfort zone and challenging yourself in new ways can be a great way to stay motivated and energised on your weight loss journey. You might even discover a new passion or activity that you absolutely love, which can make the process of getting fit and healthy feel less like a chore and more like a fun adventure.

Incorporate Healthy and Delicious meals into Your Diet

While exercise is an essential component of any weight loss journey, what you eat plays an equally important role in staying motivated and achieving your goals. Incorporating healthy and delicious meals into your diet can make the process feel less restrictive and more enjoyable.

Instead of focusing on deprivation or strict rules, shift your mindset. Discover new healthy recipes that you genuinely enjoy, and experiment with different ingredients and flavours. This can help you feel more engaged and invested in the process, rather than feeling like you’re constantly depriving yourself.

Additionally, make sure to include a variety of nutrient-dense foods in your diet, such as lean proteins, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. These foods not only provide the essential nutrients your body needs to function at its best, but they can also help you feel more satisfied and energized throughout the day. By nourishing your body with wholesome, delicious meals, you’ll be better equipped to stay motivated and committed to your weight loss journey.

Check out some free Apex Nutrition Dinner Ideas below to get started:

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Fresh Healthy Dinner Ideas

Practice Self-Care and Manage Stress

Staying motivated on your weight loss journey also requires taking care of your overall well-being, which includes managing stress and practicing self-care. When we’re feeling overwhelmed, anxious, or burned out, it can be much harder to stay focused on our health and fitness goals.

That’s why it’s so important to make time for activities and practices that help you unwind, recharge, and de-stress. This might include things like:



Be mindful of the stress levels in your life and find healthy ways to manage them. This might involve setting boundaries, delegating tasks, or simply taking breaks throughout the day to recharge. By prioritising your mental and emotional well-being, you’ll be better equipped to stay motivated and focused on your weight loss journey, even when the going gets tough.

Stay Positive and Practice Positive Self-Talk

Maintaining a positive mindset and engaging in positive self-talk is crucial for staying motivated on your weight loss journey. It’s easy to get caught up in negative thoughts and self-doubt, but these can be major roadblocks to achieving your goals.

Instead, make a conscious effort to reframe your thoughts and focus on the positive. Celebrate your successes, no matter how small, and remind yourself of how far you’ve come.

Wins could look like:


  • Adding and extra portion of veg to your plate,
  • Starting a new form of exercise,
  • Adding a new habit to your week.

When you catch yourself engaging in negative self-talk, take a step back and replace those thoughts with more encouraging, empowering ones. Always aim to give yourself 3 compliments for every one negative thought. 

Positive self-talk can take many forms, from affirmations and mantras to visualising yourself achieving your goals. Experiment with different techniques and find what works best for you. Remember, the way you talk to yourself can have a significant impact on your motivation and overall well-being, so make sure to keep it positive and up lifting.

Nutritionist making salad as part of a healthy diet.

Stay motivated with rewards and incentives

Finally, don’t be afraid to treat yourself and use rewards and incentives to stay motivated on your weight loss journey. While the ultimate reward may be reaching your goal weight or feeling healthier and more confident, it’s important to celebrate the smaller victories along the way.

This could be something as simple as buying a new piece of workout gear or treating yourself to a relaxing spa day. Or, you could set up a more structured reward system, where you earn points or “rewards” for hitting certain milestones or maintaining healthy habits.

Whatever approach you choose, the key is to make sure the rewards are meaningful and aligned with your goals. They should be things that you genuinely enjoy and that will help keep you motivated and engaged in the process. By incorporating rewards and incentives into your weight loss journey, you’ll be able to stay inspired and focused on the end goal, even when the road gets a little bumpy.

Frequently Asked Questions

Maintaining weight loss motivation involves setting realistic goals, tracking progress, rewarding achievements, and staying connected with supportive communities. Regularly remind yourself of your reasons for losing weight and celebrate non-scale victories to stay motivated.

It’s normal to experience setbacks or plateaus. Reassess your goals, adjust your diet and exercise routines, and seek support from friends, family, or weight loss communities. Remember, persistence is key, and even small progress is still progress.

Goal setting is crucial for maintaining motivation. Setting SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound) provides clear direction and measurable milestones to strive for, which can help keep you focused and motivated.

Yes, joining a weight loss community can provide support, encouragement, and accountability. Engaging with others who share similar goals can inspire you, offer new ideas, and help you stay committed to your weight loss journey.

Self-compassion is vital in maintaining motivation. Treat yourself with kindness and understanding, especially during setbacks. Recognize your efforts and progress, rather than focusing solely on shortcomings, to foster a positive mindset and sustained motivation.

Tracking your progress helps you visualize your achievements and identify areas for improvement. Use journals, apps, or photos to monitor your journey. Seeing tangible results can boost your confidence and motivation to continue.

Reward yourself with non-food-related incentives such as new workout gear, a spa day, a hobby class, or a fun outing. These rewards can reinforce positive behavior and provide motivation to stick with your weight loss plan.

Focus on the long-term benefits and remember that sustainable weight loss takes time. Celebrate small victories, such as improved energy levels or better sleep, and remind yourself of the positive changes happening within your body, even if they’re not immediately visible.

It’s normal to experience fluctuations in motivation. To regain it, revisit your goals, seek inspiration from success stories, switch up your routine to keep things interesting, and connect with supportive friends or a weight loss community for encouragement.

Find activities you enjoy to make exercise more enjoyable. Set specific workout goals, mix up your routine to prevent boredom, and exercise with a friend or group for added accountability and motivation.

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