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Where do you get your motivation?

I am often asked about my motivation to lose weight. People want to know where my motivation comes from and most importantly, what they can do to get some motivation. I wish I had a simple answer. Last week I mentioned that one of my motivations was my son. I want to be his mother forever and I want to be the best mother I can be. While this may have been part of the motivation for me to start my weight loss journey, the motivation to continue has come from other areas.

My biggest motivator is acknowledgement.  When people notice my weight loss and praise me for it, I am motivated to continue on to my goal. It was exciting when people first began to notice my weight loss and continued praise has only helped keep me moving.

Recently I have also been motivated by shopping. Never in my life have I enjoyed trying clothing on as much as I did a couple weekends ago. I had a small dance party in the dressing room at JC Penney when I realized I could wear a 1X. After years of size 3X and even having a few 4X items, I nearly screamed for joy in that dressing room. So far I have lost 4 clothing sizes. That is 8 numbers, since women's sizes go down by 2's.

In late May I was struggling with my weight loss. I would lose one week, then gain the next. It was a revolving door and I couldn't keep the weight off. In June, my employer began an incentive program for exercise for 50 days. I, along with several co-workers, signed up and we have been walking and exercising regularly since. Since June 1st, I have lost over 26 pounds. Exercise has not only helped the weight fall off, but has also helped me feel better and is keeping me motivated. I have not gained weight in 11 weeks, and if the scale is nice to me tonight, it will bd 12 weeks.  

Through the 50 day exercise incentive program, I realized that contests keep me motivated. I would make sure I exercised every single day just because I knew I would have to document my exercise and I wanted to win. We haven't found out which team won yet and the suspense is killing me. When the program ended a couple weeks ago I found my motivation disappearing. I no longer had the competition incentive to exercise and my activity level slowed down, as did my weight loss.

Thankfully, I learned of a new contest which begins next Monday, August 31st. Our own Mommy blogger, Heather Chapman, is co-hosting a

BlogapaLOSEa contest

. It is exactly what is sounds like, a weight loss competition for bloggers. From August 31st until November 23rd,  participants in the program will work toward losing weight. The person who loses the most weight in the end wins. Each participant puts $5 in the "pot" and the winner collects the money, money, money! Cash is definitely a motivator! I signed up immediately and you can too. Just check out the link I posted above to get the rest of the details. I'm hoping to lose 23.6 pounds. That will put me at a total of 100 pounds lost.

And you better believe I will be exercising every day. I'll keep you all updated on my progress here or at my personal blog


, where I post a weekly update on Monday evenings.