How to Get Motivated to Lose Weight When Depressed

It’s an all-too-familiar story: during the lockdowns and reduced social contact brought on by the pandemic, we all found ourselves in trying situations. Being prevented from seeing our social circles and communities made it difficult to see the bright side of life. So much time inside made it considerably harder to feel motivated. 

When all our time is spent at home, for example, it can be hard to discern how to motivate yourself to lose weight at home, and work toward your fitness goals. When you can’t go outside and you can’t visit the places you like it becomes harder and harder to feel like it matters to lose weight.

How To Get Motivated To Lose Weight When Depressed

It’s especially difficult to feel motivated to lose weight when you’re suffering from depression. During the COVID pandemic, depression cases rose. (ScienceDirect) People found it difficult to handle the isolation related to the lockdowns, and a lot of people lost motivation to lose belly fat.

But what causes depression? What types of depression are there? And what are the signs of depression? If you need to figure out how to get motivated to lose weight when depressed, it is important to understand the root causes of depression. Poor psychological health makes it that much harder to feel motivated to do anything about poor physical health. They are more interconnected than you might think. Understanding one will help you motivate yourself to work on the other.

What Causes Depression?

Woman eating cereal

The causes of depression are complicated and varied. Not every case of depression has the same exact cause. It’s a frustrating condition to deal with, because of how unrelenting and all-consuming it can sometimes feel. To some people, depression looks as simple as a bad day from the outside. People might think they can just snap out of it. 

In reality, what causes depression is far more complicated than just having one bad day, or even having a few bad days in a row. The causes of depression are varied, multi-pronged, multi-faceted, and can differ from case to case.  

Researchers have arrived at some important discoveries pertaining to the causes of depression. The causes can be environmental, stemming from sources like ongoing stressors at work or in our social lives. The causes can be genetic, rising from a predisposition towards depression. Or, the causes of depression can be purely chemical, based on imbalances in body chemistry and our overall health. (Mayo)

The key thing to understand about the causes of depression is that they are not simple. There is seldom a single factor contributing to depression, but depression can be a major contributing factor in ruining your motivation to set and then keep to your weight loss goals. This can create a vicious cycle; poor health and self-image can contribute to depression, and depression can make it hard to feel motivated to improve your health.

Fortunately, there are multiple ways you can approach treating depression. These ways take time, and some of them require guidance or medical help. (Mayo) Finding and treating the root causes of your depression will be a major hurdle to cross in your journey to regain control of your life, and motivate yourself to lose weight.

Types of Depression

depressed woman - how to get motivated to lose weight when depressed

If you suspect that you might be experiencing depression, then you should take that feeling seriously. Depression is a serious condition – fortunately, it’s a condition with many possible treatments. Before seeking treatment, however, it is important to understand what to treat.

There are several types of depression. (WebMD) Some types of depression might only require a change in routine to improve them, while others might need counseling and medical aid for their treatment.  The following section will outline some examples: 

  • Major depression, or major depressive disorder, is characterized by a loss of interest, energy, and enjoyment of life. Generally, poor sleep comes with major depression, as well as persistent fatigue. Trouble concentrating is also a symptom, and it also can come with a sense of worthlessness. Uncontrollable weight loss or weight gain is, incidentally, also a symptom of major depression. 
  • Persistent depressive disorder is when symptoms of depression last for two or more years. It tends to come with low self-esteem, hopelessness, a lack of energy, and an inability to make decisions. Appetite problems are also indicators of persistent depressive disorder.
  • Bipolar disorder is a disorder defined by periods of depression juxtaposed with periods of high energy. If you are experiencing bipolar disorder, it is particularly difficult to maintain any kind of plan for your health. You might experience periods of extreme energy, when anything seems possible, followed by episodes of deep depression.
  • Seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, is a form of depression that affects people for only part of the year. Generally, people experience seasonal affective disorder during winter, when days are shorter and there is less sunshine.

There are many signs of depression that tend to be consistent between cases. Signs of depression include:

  • Uncontrollable change in appetite
  • Lack of motivation, or a loss of interest in activities
  • Feelings of worthlessness or failure
  • Dark, sometimes even suicidal thoughts
  • An inability to focus

Keep in mind that this is just a general overview. There are several other kinds of depression, such as postpartum depression and psychotic depression. If you suspect you’re experiencing depression of any kind, please reach out to a licensed professional.

How to Motivate Yourself to Lose Weight at Home

One crucial aspect of the  Lean Instinct Formula™ to weight loss planning is caring for your mental health. It is as important to improve the health of your psychology as it is to work on the health of your body. 


Want to know how to make yourself lose weight fast? Losing weight is a gradual process but can happen more quickly when you aren’t fighting against your psyche. While it can be immeasurably easier said than done to keep yourself motivated along your journey, I can help you cultivate that motivation each and every step of the way.


For this reason, I’ll work with you to improve both your mental and physical health so that you can set and achieve your weight loss goals. You may currently find it hard to find motivation to lose belly fat or figure out how to get motivated to lose weight when depressed. So much of what we think about food is tied to our emotions.


However, at Rise Lean, I want to show you how to stop emotional eating forever and overcome food obsession. It all starts with how our minds are processing our relationship with food. Click here to book a 1:1 clarity call to find out more.


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