How to get motivated about exercise. Again.

The time has come friends, it’s here. Anyone care to hop aboard the mid winter health train? AGAIN?

And for the love of all things carbs, can anyone tell me how to maintain a desire to eat well and exercise ALL THE TIME? Instead of just like how I am now when my jeans are a little toight?

The excuses are thick and fast, as is the spreading of butter onto big thick slices of bread and toast.

So I’ve decided that it’s time to get moving again. For the 56th millionth time. This morning I got my arse to the gym, turned up the music and got sweaty. And it just felt good to not be lying to myself and actually be doing something you know?

And then I thought about the best ways I can get myself back into the zone of making better food choices, and trying to get moving again. For me it’s all mindset, and once I make the switch I am pretty focused and good and stick with it. Until I stop. And then make excuses. And then end up here again.

Here’s how I’ll try and get into things. Again.

1. Buy lots and lots of veggies and greens and good stuff.

If my fridge is jam packed with good foods I will be inspired to make something tasty. For me that’s got to be LOTS of veggies and greens for salads and wraps, it also means having lots of fish and seafood around and of course fruit. It’s not summer, so it’s harder but there are still LOTS of yummy veggies to fry up, make into soups and warm salads. I don’t care if it’s not all healthy, if it’s home made roasted veggies instead of 3 bread rolls, I’ll take it. Monday I will hit the fruit shop.

2. Look at photos of when you were “in the zone”

This is always an inspiration to me. It can be just 3-4 kilos but a scroll through my phone to the last time I was feeling great and exercising is enough to kick start the brain and try to feel all those things I was feeling back then. I’m usually smug AF when doing this so there are photos galore to look at, and get inspiration for.

3. Try to remember how you FELT when you were in a good place

Because I am such a visual person I find that photos will trigger a feeling and can be enough of a reminder for my brain to want it again. This can be the case with a really good meal (or baked good oops) but can also be the case for photos of when I am out walking. It kicks my brain into remembering how good it felt to be outside, having time to think and clear the head, time to myself, to listen to music and just completely zone out. I think that’s the thing I love most of all about getting in the zone…the space to think! I am always at my most creative when I am exercising. Dead set it’s 99% mental. If you are in a shitty head space, go for a walk, it WILL make you feel better. It just will. Annoying, but true.

4. Give yourself a deadline or goal to work towards

Any time I have had success with being in a good health zone I have had a goal to work towards. Last year in the last term it was #notafatmoleforchristmas and then in February it was #febulous and maybe now it’s going to be #notafatmoleforforty because it’s my 40th birthday in 7 weeks and I reckon I can make a pretty good difference in that amount of time. Maybe this is my downfall? Having short term goals and not long term change, but if I was to say this is it, forever, I’d never do it. These small goals help me achieve things in the short term and hope that some changes stick in the long term. Well, that’s what I tell myself at least.

It’s a tough time of year to get motivated I know, but my jeans are too tight and my headspace is too cranky to not do something about this. So I’ll be getting sorted, or attempting to, AGAIN. Because this rollercoaster makes things interesting right?!

The main focus for me is to get moving, stopping the carb fest and for now, that will do. Time to  hit that pavement, treadmill and road again. Let’s see how things measure up in 7 weeks time shall we?

For those of you out there who LOVE exercising and eating well, tell me/us HOW DO YOU DO IT?
Like ALL the time?
Any tips for me and others out there who ride a permanent 5 kilo up/down cycle?


  1. Maybe it’s okay and human and not a big deal to ride a 5kg cycle.

    How would THAT change the global guilt and sads and frets? (Is that the sound of a multi-billion dollar industry that play on women’s insecurities collapsing? Brilliant!)

    I’ve been pondering lots of self-hate, self-criticism, body image and societal pressure stuff lately and I’ve come up with this (so far)… I think we are answering the wrong questions. Instead of rushing to find answers for the best concealer or how people are ‘good’ all the time, or whatever it may be, why aren’t we asking, why do we feel that we need concealer??? Why do we accept talking about ‘cheat days’ in our eating? Why is that a thing?

    (These are BROAD questions and NOT directed at any comments here, I swear to Lurpak.)

    Just my thoughts today. I have to weigh myself every frickin day now that I have heart failure and it BORES and SHITS me to tears to know what I weigh every 24 hours and see the fluctuations in that every morning. Guess what? We are not static machines. Gah.

    You are most excellent Beth, phew, rant over. For now! : )

  2. I think it’s as much about not having naughty stuff in the house as it is about having good stuff. Once the block of chocolate and bag of salt and vinegar chips come home from the shop there is no question that I will eat them. I reckon bulk cooking stuff like soup or a quinoa salad that will do for lots of lunches also reduces the temptation to eat a fluffy white vegemite sandwich simply because it is fast.

  3. I read once that some notable person put a red cross on the calendar every day they did the thing they were trying train themselves to do each day (could’ve been a run, writing, painting, whatever), and pretty soon you have a spell of red crosses on the calendar all lined up and you don’t want to break that pattern…
    Anyway, here it is, I googled it-

    For me, I want to find a way to get through boring uni tasks each week completely by Thursday evening so I can relax on the weekend. I think electronic devices have ruined my concentration. I need to quit looking at my phone a zillion times a day, and take time to walk in the woodland near our house, read for pleasure, and learn how to take better photographs, or just sit with a tea and listen to the trees/birds/breeze (oh, and the uni thing I guess). I really feel like I do waste a lot of time on things that don’t matter…
    It feels amazing when you form new positive habits that feed and nourish your being, so why do we let them drop by the wayside so easily? Human nature is so weird.

  4. 7 weeks girl, you can do this, & then I give you absolute permission to let loose on your birthday. It’s your 40th for goodness sake so you should not be holding back then. Till then tho…….

  5. Ok, so I’ve done 3 things in the last few months that have helped me get my physical & mental health in check
    1. I bought a treadmill off gumtree. No excuses if it’s in my house. Every morning I’m up between 5-530am, even on the days where I’m dead dog tired, & I run or walk 5kms. I listen to the heaviest, loudest music & off I go. My head is then set for the day before I even have to deal with life.
    2. I joined weight watchers for 2 months. That was enough to kick start my weight loss & look at my portion sizes differently. TBH, I’ve still got 4 months on my contract but this month I haven’t pointed my food or tracked my weight. I feel good & my jeans are at a point where they are too big.
    3. I found Jessica Sepel. Her book Living the Healthy Life & her philosophy on our relationship with food & our body has been really helpful to me.

    I honestly feel like I’m in the best place with my overall health that I’ve been in AGES!!! Mind is clear & body feels healthy. I’ve seriously not given a single thing ( except chocolate because it now gives me fucking headaches ), I’m still eating sourdough & indulging in a cheeky greasy meal but for the most part the food is veggie loaded.
    Never give up Beth. You’ll get to the sweet spot one day xx

    • Oh & you know I love a meal prep Monday! Fill the fridge with prepped veg- roasted sweet potato, sliced/shredded zuchinni, shredded cabbage carrot, bags of baby spinach, cooked spaghetti squash are my faves. Maybe cook some brown rice & black beans to fill out the meals & always have some protein in there- a roast chook or ham are my faves or a veggie packed savoury mince. Loads of eggs, avos & nuts on hand too. Oh, & granola!!!

      • Seeing this post from you Reannon reminds me how much I miss your Instagram presence. Anyway, hope you are well. And good luck Beth. I picked a goal last year – to run the City To Surf before I was 40. Committed with a mate (which was the key for me – having someone to be accountable to) to a regular training and eating plan. Ran the C2S, dropped 10 kgs and so far have kept it off. Good luck, it’s bloody hard when sugar & carbs are so darn good.

        • Oh Lou, thank you. It’s funny, I’ve had a few people pop up telling me they’ve been thinking of me ir missing me over on Insta these last few weeks. It’s nice to know.
          Well done on the C2S, that’s bloody awesome x

    • This is SO good to hear. Good on you!!! x

  6. Hey Beth! Great suggestions, particularly the tip of looking at recent ‘in-the-zone’ pics of yourself, so much healthier than comparing yourself to the latest Insta fit gal who you will never be. You are just fab being you!! Please don’t be too hard on yourself, that first pic sums up how tricky it can be trying to fit in good quality consistent exercise when you have a toddler, it can drive you insane, remember it well. Enjoy the fresh air when you can, and those sweet moments of sipping bubbles, licking the butter and celebrating with the cake – all important too! Love to you! Liz XO

  7. I’m pretty good at exercising, because I like eating and vanity motivates me to exercise so I can eat more. Plus, endorphins, keeping asthma symptoms at bay, time away from the house/kids and a husband who is very encouraging. I’m not so good at the food but turned a corner recently. I wouldn’t recommend this corner but maybe there is still a lesson for others. I was put on antidepressants. They made me feel awful. I have mild depression but the side effects of those pills were making me majorly depressed. I stopped taking them and decided to focus on other things proven to help mild depression – like meditation, exercise, and particular food (and yes therapy). I am now treating food as medicine, making conscious decisions at every meal as to what I know is good for me. Like I would if I’d been diagnosed with diabetes. Like my dad is after his heart attack. It’s not coming from a place of wanting my jeans to fit or wanting to be a number on the scale. It’s coming from a place of self compassion, and love – for myself and my kids, who deserve a healthy mother. I want to feel well, I don’t want to be sad all the time, so I am eating well. I am not tempted by dreadful food because the idea of having to go on those pills again is enough to make me never eat cake again (I will totally eat cake again but it will be delicious homemade cake made with love for a special occasion and I will choose a small piece and enjoy it immensely and then not have any more). So I wouldn’t recommend the depression part of my story but I would recommend the self compassion part of it ☺️

  8. I have recently started on Happy Hormones ( I’m not affiliated ) but this stuff has been life changing !!! I did the 8 week challenge and lost 8kg which I have kept off .
    I’m feeling a lot happier in myself , bloating gone,skin clear, mood swings are so much better . Lisa Curry is the spokesperson for it .

  9. You know I know exactly how you feel. My downfall is carbs and dairy. Love my bread and cheese although I don’t eat butter or margarine, in cooking yes but I have dry toast etc. I believe w should all aim to be healthy. What I a m finding is that the older I get the more I realise that life is short. Do what makes YOU happy. If you like that one bread roll smothered with butter, have it. An aquaintance of ours was 47. A fitness freak and such a focused healthy eater. They buried him last week. His healthy life style made no difference to his life. He is gone. Blunt yes, but so true. Eat healthy but don’t give up life’s pleasures. Good luck. I know you will do well. X

  10. I had revealation recently, “imagine if we all stopped trying to change ourselves”? Having said that I am still trying to change. I’m 52, 5kg heavier than a year ago and 10kg heavier than I would like to be. But somehow reflecting on the societal pressure to be healthier, thinner, fitter, richer, more spiritual etc etc has made me figure out what I do want to change and what I am very happy with keeping. I don’t want to look younger, or be sexier (husband and I are fine with the status quo!!) or earn more money, but I want my body to work well for a long time. My Mum died of ovarian cancer at 64. So I need a positive focus. Kelly and Carly in Straight and Curly talked about eating 5 cups of vegetables a day. It’s a great positive thing to aim for, no deprivation. I eat veggie fritters for breakfast (let me know if anyone wants the “recipe”) and try to have a green smoothie as well. If you are eating that much veg you choose the salad or soup at lunch over the roll or pie but with a sense of achievement of the goal, not deprivation. Have also just read “Want to feel Calm and Confident?” a little book by Shannah Kennedy I got on sale at Kikkik. Her first instruction is to define your values. So if I really value my health why am I behaving in ways that don’t support it? I had my ovaries removed last year to minimise my cancer risk, so my everyday actions should also align with the value right?? I’m hoping that this insight will give me the impetus to get back into some regular exercise and see it as something that is an essential part of me not something that society imposes on me and therefore a burden. Making time will still be an issue but that is the next challenge!!

  11. Something that is helping me get started is 1 knowing that I’m probably not a loving exercise person- so for me I just need to get it done because it needs doing like teeth brushing rather than waiting for it to feel super

    2 a new toy- I have a Fitbit thingy which is sending me little “stickers ” when I reach my goals like go for a 15 min walk and because I’m 38 going on 5 it’s really working. Even though the stickers are just little pictures in my email it’s as good as that feeling in primary school when you got a super pretty sticker from the teacher to put proudly on your tunic:)

  12. you can do this beth!
    you’ve done it before!
    walking and incidental excersize … I cant even spell it!
    low carbs and less in the mouth!
    just say’n what works for moi!
    mantra … I can do this!
    much love m:)X

  13. I love reading all this advice and self love yep I think that is key. Beth do it for your 40th for sure. Love that I am not the only one in this on/off roller coaster. So sick of starting again. I love Carly from Smaggle and how she incorporates more veg. This really helped me last year so I’m back on the veg again. Especially oven roasted. Cauliflower is in season and delicious roasted. Happy to join the fit bandwagon…..again!

  14. For me a trick to long term commitment is both short terms goals and set times in your week when you exercise. I have three times a week set aside to exercise and I always go. If I’m feeling particularly rubbish I can do something gentle like walk, but otherwise it is a run. Not always long and tough, but always something. It is amazing how I actually run well on the days I felt terrible getting out of bed. And then I feel a sense of satisfaction, I feel better and I want to eat well, but even if I do eat something non-optimal, it isn’t too much of a crisis because I know the exercise is always there to balance it out. But for me that structure of set times every week is the key. Without that it is far too easy to just not go!

  15. God, I am so hearing you Betharoony!!!! So hearing you and I am right there with you in that exact spot. I too am trying for the 56th millionth time and my clothes are too tight and my arse is too fat and to tell you the truth, with Tom away at boarding school and saving for 2 more boys to go I can’t actually afford not to fit into my clothes. I kid you not – there are only a few items that I feel half comfy in in my wardrobe. It isn’t pretty. With cooking full time I can’t seem to drag myself out of bed early these days… but I am up this morning and ready to hit the bush track for a walk which always sets me on a better eating path for the day. I too have been eating all the carbs which bloat me and make me feel preggers. Surely we can do this… I just need to drop 4 or 5kg’s, is it really that much to ask?

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