Looking for Motivation? Try a Contest or Competition

woman on treadmillsThe quest to lose weight is one of the most common struggles of adulthood. Most of us have learned that it requires a lot more dedication than simply cutting back on seconds.

When you’re unhappy with your body, you need confidence to make changes. If you’ve tried and failed in the past, you need advice and motivation. A contest might do the trick!

Weight loss challenges can be an effective way to kick-start your journey toward your goals, as well as to find the support and accountability you need to go all the way to your goals. You can start a contest among friends or family, enter a competition at work or in your community, sign up for an event you’ll need to train for, or even join the Get Fit Challenge at XSport (click here for contest details).

To lose weight and keep it off, you’ll need adopt a healthy mindset and a fitness-focused lifestyle with new eating habits. But changing a mindset and a lifestyle is a tall order—wondering how can a contest help with all that?

10 Reasons Weight Loss Contests Work
    1. Enthusiasm. They say success breeds enthusiasm, so what do you do when you aren’t successful at weight loss? Get excited about it. A competition can help you fuel the passion you’ll need.
    1. Concentration. A contest with an end date (make it at least 8 weeks long so you won’t be forcing rapid unhealthy weight loss) requires you to concentrate on your goals not drift in and out of your efforts.
    1. Effort. Competing naturally creates energy for extra effort—we all like to win. And it’s usually the extra effort that makes all the difference in achieving as much as you can.
    1. Support. When people commit to transforming their bodies and lives, it helps to know you’re working hard alongside someone else. Plus, when others are rooting for you, it’s a big motivating factor.
    1. Motivation. A challenge takes on even more meaning when you have a list of things to gain, whether that be your new body weight, bragging rights, or winning a friendly wager. One couple bet a year of massages for meeting their weight loss goals—they both did it, and both were rewarded, together.
    1. Accountability. The nature of a contest is that others are involved. When you join, you state your intentions out loud. You’ll be clear about your starting point and ultimate goals. Answering to someone other than yourself cuts back on cheating and giving up!
    1. Knowledge. With a limited time period contest, you want to focus on learning what you need to do to maximize your results, instead of casually trying a couple new approaches. A competition inspires us to take things seriously, read up and find structure.
    1. Structure. One of the biggest hurdles for most people’s weight loss and fitness efforts is consistency. Competing works best when you have a plan. Contest rules and dates also provide structure, and structure is a building block of self-discipline.
    1. Inspiration. Find a challenge that others have succeeded at, or that offers a messaging or a prize that uplifts you, and you’ll increase your chances of success. We’re able to persist with our plans better when they inspire us, instead seem out of our reach, or make us feel deprived.
  1. Confidence. Plenty of people at various stages of their lives, with different histories and circumstances, need to reclaim their wellness. It takes guts to go all in, accept that you’re worth it, and work to find new habits and activities that support your health and appearance.

You want—and deserve—to reach your goals, and a challenge can spark the confidence that carries you through!

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