The right expectations can make or break your dieting effort. This means that you have to actively manage your expectations to ensure long-term motivation.
Most people miss this step and get demotivated when things don’t turn out the way they had hoped. We all want to reach our goals as fast as possible, but always ask yourself what is actually possible, and what lines up with reality.
Let me give you an example:
Most people nowadays are on Instagram. A big part of Instagram is fitness bloggers and their before and after pictures. Because many of these before and after pictures show crazy transformations in no time, our perceptions of what’s really possible and under what timeframe is often distorted.
Even if you know that losing 30 pounds in two weeks isn’t realistic, if you see these ads for miracle workouts and supplements online all day you cant ignore them for too long. What most people don’t know or don’t want to know is that many before/after photos are photoshopped or that people took way longer to achieve these results than they claim.
Don’t get me wrong! You can make amazing transformations in a few months but most beginners don’t have perfect conditions and a prone to making mistakes. The problem is that when you think you have to look like a supermodel after dieting for a few weeks you will get disappointed quickly.
Don’t Compare Yourself To Internet Models
You have to make sure to keep your expectations in check and don’t compare yourself to pictures you see on the internet. Results will come over time but oftentimes this involves going through motivation lows and setbacks.
If you don’t plan for them you will not only blow your expectations out of proportion but also limit your ability to commit to something for longer than a few weeks. If you expect to lose several pounds in the first week, but you only lose one, then you will automatically think some is wrong with you. Or that your diet and workout doesn’t work.
People that think this way will jump from one program to the other without ever committing to one long-term and having patience.
Having unrealistic expectations will set you up for failure because you build up way too much hope. Therefore the disappointment will be even greater when you don’t get the promised results immediately.
Please remember: Fitness is not a race!
Big improvements require big changes and these will take time. If you try to drastically change your diet workout and lifestyle from one day to the other you will burn out within a few weeks and simply go back to your old lifestyle. You long-term gains are nearly zero.
If instead, you accept that changes take time and take baby steps you will gradually build up the confidence necessary to make larger and larger changes until you eventually reach your goal.