How To Find Motivation When There Is No Finish Line

grumpy cat motivation

Eyes on the prize.

You wanted the extra TWO days of vacation more than you wanted the double fudge brownie. You needed to win the office Biggest Loser challenge more than you needed to go to happy hour with the girls. You baked extra chicken breasts on the weekend, walked on the treadmill while you caught up on Scandal and said no to your husband’s offer for dinner out on Valentine’s Day because SOMEONE (grrr) decided the office weigh-in should be February 15.

You persevered and you did it! You won!

With that extra time banked for a much need family camping trip this summer, you breathe a sigh of relief and enjoy a salted caramel truffle from the heart shaped box your husband surprised you with. (He’s not very good at following instructions.)

Tuesday arrives and you drive right past the gym on the way home. You know you should keep up with your routine but you need to catch up on the laundry. When you get home the last of the chicken is gone, everyone is hungry and no one wants to cook. How about pizza?

The slippery post challenge slop has begun…

The thrill of a big goal is often a POWERFUL motivator but even the most determined competitor takes time off. How do you stay true to your healthy habits when the pressure is off and there isn’t a prize on the line?

Motivation is overrated. It’s all about staying COMMITTED.

That’s the real secret to a healthy and happy fit life.  Challenges, competitions and races can be a part of what keeps you committed as long as you go about it with three very important things in mind.

Connect to your big picture goal.

Whatever kind of competition you choose to participate in you have to connect it with something that lasts longer than 30 days (or however long the program lasts). Take a step back and figure out what the ultimate goal is. Create your Fitness Vision – a picture of your ideal self in five years. Paint a vivid picture of your life, what you’re doing and how you feel. Then make it concrete by writing it down, creating a vision board or drawing a picture.  Use your fitness vision as a guide to create healthier habits that you can sustain as well as help you hit the mark for the short-term goals you’ve set. If you see yourself running a marathon you need to make sure your training plan not only builds your base but also helps keep you running injury free long term.  Starving yourself to win a pot of money in a four-week weight loss challenge won’t help you keep muscle you might want to hike the Inca Trail.

It’s not always about winning.

 Entering a contest or challenge doesn’t always have to be about the big prize. It can be about getting inspired by a group of other women pursuing a common goal. If new workouts and meal plans or coaching support is being provided take it and learn all you can! Use these tools to examine what you’ve been doing and figure out what “healthy habits” might actually be holding you back.  For example, fruit is great but you can overeat anything.  A new plan might make you shift to more vegetables with less fruit. It’s a simple and sustainable change but one that can reap positive benefits on your physique and health numbers.

Don’t swing to far one way or the other.

If you are super competitive and the WIN is what gets you going, be careful not to set yourself up for future failure by going to the extreme. The boomerang effect is a powerful one. You may want to skip the wine after dinner a few weeks before the big finale but cutting out EVERYTHING that makes you happy will only make you crave it more. Pick one thing you love and have a bit of it without guilt. You can find many ways to get your chocolate/salt/pasta craving without going overboard. I love a good protein mug cake to get my chocolate fix without a sugar crash and burn. However, that doesn’t mean I won’t occasionally have piece of dark chocolate with my tea too. I don’t have it every night but I also have never made it completely off limits, even when I am trying to lean out for a photo shoot.

If these tips aren’t enough to help you stay committed, maybe you need a full time coach. Better yet, maybe you need the tools to help you become your own coach. I invite you to take a look at my new book, Motivation Is Made Not Found, to find more tips like these to help you make your own motivation whenever you need it. It’s a collection of my best essays on motivation and a blue print to help create your motivation daily and stay committed. It’s on sale till February 29 so don’t wait till the next office wellness challenge to check it out!

If you are ready for the next competition or challenge, I am pretty sure Michelle has an idea or two. ;)



About Pamela:

Pamela and I met at Idea World many moons ago and connected view our shared introvert habits. She has been a blessing and joy to my life, adding value every time we speak. She keeps a wonderful blog: filled with up to the minute tips about real health and fitness. She has a passion to help other women realize their true potential and love their bodies by harnessing the power of fitness and nutrition.

You can find Pamela on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest  and  YouTube





Trainer Tip Tuesday


I am beyond thrilled to kick off a brand new series called Trainer Tip Tuesday. This series of posts will address personal trainers, coaches and even those who are thinking of joining this wonderful profession.

The goal is to embed knowledge and wisdom while helping trainers and coaches make the most of their education and passion.

Today’s pots is from my dear friend and fellow trainer, Pamela Hernandez, who owns Thrive Personal Fitness.

Read on as she tackles some questions that new and old trainers may not have thought about before signing the bottom line :)

cookie monster

What They Don’t Teach You about Being a Personal Trainer:


Congratulations! You’ve passed your personal trainer exam! You’re excited and anxious to get started. Maybe a gym has offered you a place to work or perhaps you’re striking out on your own. Either way, you can’t wait to get your first client.

The problem is they forgot to tell you how to set your prices, find your niche and market yourself. Unfortunately that’s not all your certification program left out.

Your certification leaves you woefully unprepared for the real world of personal training. I compare getting your certification to kindergarten. In kindergarten you learn your letters and some basic vocabulary. You learn to count. But putting together a proper sentence or multiplication is still out of reach.

During your certification program you get your basics of anatomy, physiology and movement. You learn to count reps. You learn about what exercises work what muscles, but no one really shows you how to translate a workout to a program to meet you clients goals. No one prepares you for the unhealthy bodies you will encounter and the behavioral coaching they are going to need. Preparation for the BUSINESS of personal training is completely absent.

Here is the hard reality. If you want to make personal training your full time job, only 20-25% of your time will be spent in the gym with clients. The rest of the time is spent prepping programs, taking continuing education classes, marketing yourself, balancing the books and all the other things it takes to run a successful business.  Your education has only just begun. Here are the important lessons about the business of personal training you need to start with.

  •  Whether you know it or not you have started a small business

You need to set up a separate account for business expenses, set a budget and a separate mailing address. Keep your business finances separate from your personal ones, including credit. While your chances for audit are small, only about 1% according to WalletHub, audits for small businesses are UP 17% since 2009. Keep detailed and organized records and you will be prepared, plus it will help you in the event you decide to seek an SBA loan or other financing.  Also find an accountant you trust. A good accountant is not just someone who puts your numbers into a piece of software to do your taxes. A good accountant will advise you on how to maximize your income while avoiding unpleasant surprises at tax time.

  • Know your value

When I first started training I was told by a gym manager no one would pay my personal training rates. I firmly stood my ground because I had done my research. I compared rates for other trainers in my local area with similar services and priced accordingly. I also knew the personal service I provide ranked higher than the cookie cutter programs at big box gyms. It’s for this reason I also don’t offer discounts. I value what I do and I want my clients to do the same. If I discount my services, I have also discounted myself. For this and many other reasons, stay away from Groupon, Living Social and other discount programs. You might get a short-term burst of clients but they rarely stick around.

  • Find a mentor

My ACSM CPT certification gave me a basic vocabulary. I learned program design and about the business of personal training from other trainers. A good mentor can provide you with the missing pieces of your personal trainer education. They can offer you hands on experience and a sympathetic ear when you have a difficult client or situation. This can be a formal arrangement via an internship or an informal friendship. Online mentor programs, continuing education programs and fitness conferences can offer huge opportunities to learn from experts in your field and expand your professional network.

  •  Read books outside of your field

I used to try to read every new diet book on the market but I couldn’t keep up. I stopped trying when I realized they are all virtually saying the same thing. A better use of my time is reading books on business, marketing, behavior change and nutrition. If you haven’t read Switch by Chip and Dan Heath or The Thank You Economy by Gary Vaynerchuck do so NOW.

  • Rest

I started training part time while I worked a full time desk job. I offered myself for training appointments 6 days a week at any time the client could meet. On Sundays I prepped workouts for the week and wrote for my blog. The consequences verged on exhaustion and what I believe was the beginning of adrenal fatigue. I had to slow down or else. I implemented a set schedule for training and started taking Sundays off – including taking a Social Media Sabbath. It made a huge difference! I got my health and my sanity back. I also could give every client the energetic training session she deserves. It’s important to set boundaries and make time for OUR workouts, to rest and recharge. You have to take care of yourself so you can take care of others.

If you are serious about your personal training career then you have to be smart and passionate both in and out of the gym. If you want to be in this business for the long haul always remember it is a business and never stop learning.


Pamela Hernandez is a fitness maven, author and motivational speaker. Her goal is to empower women with fitness and to help women take control of their health and their lives! She has been on her own fitness journey since 1999 and she started her entrepreneurial journey in 2009 when she founded her personal training company, Thrive Personal Fitness. As a former fat girl and natural introvert, her goal is to take her personal lessons learned, from building her own fitness and building a successful small business, and use them to help other women live their dreams.

Pamela Headshot 2014

FUN FRIDAY! Special Guest Post: Beverly Weeks

Happy Fun Friday to ya’ll!

Today’s guest post comes from my beautiful friend Beverly Weeks. Here and I met through the She Speaks/Proverbs 31 track and have enjoyed a blossoming friendship. I really love her fresh voice and fun perspective on life. I hope you enjoy her down to Earth attitude about reaching her goals AND honoring God :)

A Personal Trainer, Are You Kidding?

ME workout with a personal trainer? Are you kidding? Warning: if you use your imagination, the contents in this devotion may cause you to laugh so hard you may wet your pants…well never mind. His name was D-Rock and can I be candid? He looked just like something off of a butter commercial. Young,  dark eyes, tan, and yes he had a six pack. You could see it right through his t-shirt along with the muscles on his arms, legs, and even around his ankles!  I was well over 40 and it was obvious that my body had been drooping in places I never knew it could possibly droop! And then there was Spanx, ughhh never worked for me, that just squishes it all out!! Determined to slow down the aging process I relentlessly called him up and scheduled an appt. That first night he worked out muscles I never even knew existed, all the while I was trying to act refined by sucking in my stomach tightly and holding everything as upright and in place as I could. I thanked him and headed straight for the bathroom. PROBLEM, I couldn’t squat!! Frustrated , I got in the car & headed home.

An hour later I found myself lying on an ER table with my husband and my friend Phyllis by my side. To save me embarrassment, the doctor gave it a fancy diagnosis. I knew what he was thinking, the same thing I was.  Are you crazy? What are you trying to prove? Your whipped , and not to mention you feel like your about to die!! D-Rock had done a great job, I had just failed to tell him I hadn’t eaten all day. I was so engrossed with trying to make myself look better on the outside that I had failed to fuel up and take care of the inside. Just being candid, I have tried it all! Atkins, cracker diets, no starch, no meats, no sweets and the lists goes on.  You know, I was concentrating all my efforts on trying to be beautiful and improve my outward appearance, yet I was a failure on the inside. A crumbling marriage, success & goal driven, priorities out of line , always caring about what others think, using disrespectful words to my spouse….. trying to impress so many people, but not the two  people I should have been seeking two impress, my God and my husband.

I was doing it all wrong!  The deepest beauty does not come from cosmetics, jewelry, working out, or basking in the sun, but the deepest beauty by far is the beauty of the soul. Don’t misunderstand me it is not wrong to desire outside beauty. Hey I still get my nails done, and my hairdresser Jamie knows I am going to be there every Friday at 8:30, and you will always see me with jeans and high heels.  At the end of the day everyone wants to look better BUT looking better from God’s point of view begins on the inside and not the outside.  Sometimes I have to see my flaws and recognize that I am a sinner and seek for God to change whatever is wrong from within.  Mirror Mirror on my wall, my GOD finds me beautiful, even when I fall.  That my friend is what matters most of all.      

“The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” Samuel 16:7



Beverly Weeks is an energized Christian speaker who is devoted to encouraging couples with God’s inspired Word.  She has written numerous online devotions, blogs & articles to exemplify powerful, practical biblical truths to couples standing for their marriage and family. Candidly & transparently, Beverly shares the grace, hope & redemption that Christ offers to all and their marriage relationships.

Beverly speaks from personal experience, a confident faith and a zealous passion, proclaiming encouraging messages of hope. She engages women’s groups, churches and conferences with topics such as Battling Low Self Esteem to Healing in Your Marriage.

Beverly presently serves with Intentionally Yours, a marriage focused ministry, facilitates Art of Marriage conferences and is a Homebuilder Catalyst for Family Life Ministries.

Hey wait a second, who wrote this? Don’t forget I love dark chocolate, peanut butter & bananas, alfredo sauce, shopping, consignment shops & did I say I LOVE dark chocolate?

To find out more about Beverly visit: