The short answer is, I didn't. I didn't even have motivation when I started losing! What I did have, however, was determination.
(Um, Katie... isn't that the same thing?)
No--they are completely different! Here is the definition from the dictionary:
Motivation- A motivating force, stimulus, or influence; incentive; drive.
Determination- The act of deciding definitely and firmly; firm or fixed intention to achieve a desired end.
I believe that motivation is only temporary. You might feel motivated to lose weight by watching weight loss stories on TV, or reading weight loss blogs (like mine!) or seeing a friend who did it. But that motivation only lasts until you are faced with temptation, and then the motivation shoots out the window because you want to eat _____ (fill in the blank). Motivation is that "force" that makes you want to achieve something and gives you drive to do it--but only until you lose that drive.
When I finally decided to lose the weight, it wasn't a matter of feeling motivated--because I didn't feel that way at all. I really was sick of dieting and failing; of high hopes being crushed every time I failed; deprivation and restriction... I just wanted to be done with the whole idea of losing weight and just live my life!
However, when I wasn't able to teach Noah to ride a two-wheeler because I was too fat to run up and down the street alongside his bike, the fire of determination was lit inside of me. It was no longer an act of feeling motivated (because I still didn't feel motivated)--I just decided that I would have to do it, no matter how badly I didn't want to.
When I made that decision, it was no longer an issue as to whether I could stay on track--because I was so determined to finally reach the "end" that I wanted/needed. I knew exactly what I needed to do to lose the weight (count calories and make smarter food decisions; exercise); so I did it because that was the decision I had already made.
When you feel the fire of determination, you're not making the decision to just "get it done"; you're making the decision to do whatever it takes to get it done. This doesn't mean that you're not going to have setbacks along the way; but you will realize that they are just setbacks. You can keep right on going, because you already made the decision to do whatever it takes and not give up.
Eight months after I felt that determination, my mom took this video:
I was still very overweight in that video (about 173 pounds), but I was able to teach Eli to ride a two-wheeler. That made every little sacrifice worth it.
If you have seen my weight loss video, then you might recognize this picture:
The reason I chose that picture to represent "determination" was because this was the day that I finally achieved an 8-mile run. I had attempted to run 8 miles two other times, but couldn't quite make it. Then I made the decision that the third attempt was going to be IT, and I was absolutely determined to finish that 8 miles. And I did!! My shirt was soaked in sweat (that was obviously before I discovered the magic of technical shirts!) but you can see the smile on my face and how proud I felt in that moment.
I guess the whole point of this post is that if there is something you want, don't wait for motivation to push you through (because it won't)--find the determination inside of you and DO IT! No excuses ;)