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Rewards For Weight Loss and Fitness

Updated on November 11, 2022


Dieting in itself has a host of rewards that happen automatically, as a result of losing weight, eating healthier, and exercising. I also like to give myself little incentives throughout my diet to help keep myself going, and I like to come up with a list of rewards for accomplishing my goals. It gives me extra motivation to keep up the momentum.


Definition of Reward

"Something given or received in recompense for worthy behavior or in retribution for evil acts"

"Psychology The return for performance of a desired behavior; positive reinforcement"

Automatic Benefits of Weight Loss

The benefits of losing weight vary from person to person, and depend largely on lifestyle and diet, but here are a few possible benefits:

  • Lowers risk of cardiovascular disease
  • Reverses or prevents diabetes
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Reduces LDL (bad) cholesterol and triglyceride levels
  • Joints may feel better after losing weight
  • Back may feel better after losing weight
  • Improves posture
  • Improves sleep apnea
  • Gains energy
  • Feels and looks healthier
  • Increases self-confidence
  • Looks more appealing (not only to others, but also to yourself)
  • Fits into smaller clothes, or outfits that were previously tight

Feeling Deprived

Many people feel deprived when they go on a diet, and this can sometimes cause them to falter, or even to quit it altogether. Abby Campbell's article tackles that subject head-on, so if it is something you're interested in, check out the link:

Would you be motivated to lose weight if you had a reward system in place?

See results
This is a fruit parfait I treat myself to. It is healthy, and so tasty!
This is a fruit parfait I treat myself to. It is healthy, and so tasty! | Source
Fruit smoothies are delicious and much healthier than most milkshakes. Side note: I originally used a Guinness glass, but several people objected to the cup containing a smoothie, instead of Guinness (ha, ha)
Fruit smoothies are delicious and much healthier than most milkshakes. Side note: I originally used a Guinness glass, but several people objected to the cup containing a smoothie, instead of Guinness (ha, ha) | Source
I like to make my own popcorn, and find creative ways to top it without adding too many calories, fat or sugar
I like to make my own popcorn, and find creative ways to top it without adding too many calories, fat or sugar | Source

Rewards During The Diet

In addition to those rewards that happen automatically when we lose weight or maintain a healthy lifestyle, I like to find ways to keep the process interesting. Some of my ideas:

  • I find music that I really like, and load it onto my MP3 player. There's nothing like music to motivate me to exercise, and to make time fly by
  • I buy lots of healthy foods that I really enjoy. Not everyone likes the same foods, but you're bound to enjoy some more than others
  • I keep my eye open for recipes that really get me excited. There are loads of them out there, including many that are healthy
  • I also like to make sure I have plenty of low or no-calorie spices, herbs, and sauces and mustards that add a lot of flavor to my meals without compromising the healthiness. It's easy to turn a bland meal into something tantalizing by adding just the right seasoning
  • I also make sure I make some refreshing beverages on hot days. There are many beverages that are good for you (as long as you don't overdo it), or at least acceptable as long as you don't have them too often
  • I still go out to eat on occasion, I just watch what I eat, and bring some of it home if the portions are too large to justify eating all of it in one sitting (that happens most of the time, and I enjoy leftovers, as well)
  • I treat myself to something on my "no" list of food on occasion. If it is something that I make myself, I make a healthier version of it
  • If you like cooking, a cooking class might be a fun thing to try out. You could learn a lot!
  • Try dressing up, and treating yourself to a photo shoot. Maybe even do this before and after your diet, to see how much you have progressed. I feel it can be a good boost to the self-esteem to see ourselves looking our best!
  • On that same note, maybe go through your clothes and rediscover pieces you may not have noticed in a while, and see if you can put together a cute outfit out of what you have. Or go out and buy something new
  • If you have the opportunity, it might be good to go to a spa for a weekend. Or else to a day spa for the afternoon
  • If that is not an option, there are many pampering routines that can be done from the comfort of your own home. Many things can be made yourself with supplies you have around the house! I like to pamper myself every so often. It might be fun to have friends over, and let them in on the fun, too
  • Take a long bubble bath
  • If you like having your nails done, maybe go out and have a manicure, or else get them done in the comfort of your own home
  • On the same note, maybe you would like to go out and get your hair done. A new hairstyle, or even just a good trim, can make you look and feel good
  • Find a really fun way to exercise, or else a great environment
  • Get out and see a movie you have really wanted to watch, or else stay in and watch one in the comfort of your own home. Popcorn is a wonderful thing to snack on, as long as you pop it yourself and watch what you drizzle over it
  • Try buying some flowers for yourself. Or, if you are lucky enough to have flowers in your yard, maybe take a few cuttings to bring indoors. They have a sweet way of brightening up a room
  • Tired? If you are able to, take a restorative "cat nap". Sometimes it feels amazing to get a little bit of sleep during the day, and it can help you to be more alert and productive for the rest of the day
  • Set aside time to read a good book you have been wanting to read
  • Take the time to do something creative that you enjoy. Draw, paint, write, or take photographs- whatever relaxes you, or makes you feel alive
  • Is there a game you like to play, whether a board game, card game, or video game? Set aside some time to relax and play
  • Start a garden (outdoors, or even in containers), or maintain one you have. It can be relaxing to work the soil, and watch plants grow

I live near a beach, so I enjoy my walks. It doesn't feel like a "chore" when the scenery is so pretty, and the air smells good
I live near a beach, so I enjoy my walks. It doesn't feel like a "chore" when the scenery is so pretty, and the air smells good | Source

Healthy Food or Beverage Treats During a Diet

Trail Mix
Yogurt Parfaits
Homemade Popsicles
Iced Tea *
Dried Fruit
Greek Yogurt
Iced Coffee *
Dark Chocolate
Homemade Lemonade *
Fruit Salads
Frozen yogurt
Homemade Fruit Slushy *
Green or Herbal Tea

* Preferably with no or little sugar, or with sweetener

Pampering Rewards During a Diet

Hot Bath, with Bubbles or Bath Salts
Facial Sauna
Hair and Scalp Treatment
Overall Makeover
Foot Soak
Eye Mask
Hand Scrub, Massage and Moisturize
Going on a day or weekend trip to the beach is a relaxing reward
Going on a day or weekend trip to the beach is a relaxing reward | Source

Rewarding Yourself For Meeting Weight Loss or Fitness Goals

I think the biggest rewards should be doled out once a goal has been accomplished. For maximum effect, try writing out your goals, as well as coinciding rewards either before you start your diet, or else at the beginning. It can be very motivating! Everyone's "prizes" are bound to be different, but here are some of my ideas:

  • Have a meal or beverage that you really want
  • Go out to eat at a place your really like, or have been curious about
  • Buy a movie you have been wanting to see
  • Buy some pampering products
  • Get some new makeup
  • Buy a new outfit, or shoes
  • Buy a new workout outfit
  • But a new fitness gadget, to keep up your excitement for maintaining your figure
  • Buy a book or an e-book you have been desiring
  • Go on a vacation
  • Get a massage
  • Go to the beach

I don't just plan on one ultimate reward. I make several specific goals based on losing a certain amount of weight or inches, or else for attaining a visibly toned body. I have some "back-up goals", just in case I lose the weight later than the earliest desired date. I try to be realistic, and set rewards that will help motivate me to attain them.

Brenda from "Lean Secrets" has an awesome view of motivation, pertaining to diet and fitness

My Personal Weight Loss Rewards

If I lose...
by (date):
2 pounds
A glass of beer or wine
5 pounds
New gym pants
5 pounds
A meal of my choice
10 pounds
Grand Prize and something smaller
10 pounds
A new book
10 pounds
A new outfit
7 pounds (140 lb)
A bag of Hawaiian Hazelnut coffee :)

Once I hit a total of 40 workout tasks*, I get a reward of $15 to spend on pampering products. If I accomplish it by July 27th, I win $25 to spend

My Rewards For Losing Weight

I am on my own small weight loss and fitness journey, through late July or mid-August of 2013. It's not only about losing weight, it's also about toning my muscles and maintaining an especially healthy diet, but (for the sake of these goals) I will use weight loss as a benchmark.

At this time, I am writing down my own rewards for losing weight. This will give me a bit of motivation.

Accomplishments So Far:

  1. I lost 2 lbs. by July 4th, so I had a glass of Dos Equis one night
  2. I completed 40 workout tasks 2 days before the 27th, so I am treating myself to $25 to spend on pampering products soon

I haven't accomplished everything, but as of 7/25/13:

  1. I feel more energetic
  2. I am approximately 4 inches smaller, all around (from arm, hip, and leg measurements)
  3. I have lost 3 1/2 pounds
  4. I am getting more exercise than before I started this
  5. I have gotten more fresh air since I started this
  6. A few months ago, my arms were a little flabby. Since then, I have lost an inch off of each, and they have some muscle. My abs are tighter and more noticeable. My legs have always been pretty solid, but my thighs have slimmed and toned significantly

Status Updates:

Workout Tasks During Week
Total Tasks, So Far
Weight Loss
3 so far
Approx 1.2 lbs
3 since 6/26
2 lbs
Nearly 1/2 lb
1 pound
fluctuated a bit; maintained
4 so far
40 *
3 since 7/25
2.2 lbs
0.8 lbs

My Progress So Far

July 4, 2013

I am doing very well! The 2 weeks before this were so-so, but this week has been great. I have been eating plenty of fruits, veggies and protein, and haven't overindulged or mindlessly munched. I have also done quite a bit of exercising. On top of my normal exercise tasks, I have walked up the stairs at the train stations (instead of using the escalator), and gone on more short walks on the way home (rather than getting off of the bus right in front of my apartment). My body is toning up, and going up the stairs is becoming easier! I have done 5 planned exercise tasks so far, and have 2 1/2 days left this week.

As far as my weight, I am below 145. When I weighed myself this morning, my scale was being inconsistent. It said I was only 143.8 several times, but then it clocked in at 144.6, so I went with the higher weight. My scale is not the best, but it's better than nothing! Anyway, since I have been keeping track of my weight for the challenge, I have lost a little over 2 lb. As a reward, I will have a beer tonight, while I watch the fireworks from my apartment (I'm crossing my fingers that we can see the display).

Another small reward I let myself have was an ice cream bar earlier today. It was hot, and it's in celebration of the holiday. The Orange Cream bar was delicious, cold, and only 100 calories!

My next goal is another 3 lbs in 9 days. I don't know if that will happen, but if it doesn't, I'll aim for the 3 lbs in 16 days.

Progress, July 22, 2013

I am doing okay. I have done one exercise task this week, so I am only 3 away from the goal of 40 tasks by the 27th. Unless I completely slack off (which I don't intend on), I should accomplish that goal!

As far as my weight, I am unsure how it is, since my scale is being inconsistent. But my body is toning up well, I feel energetic, and I pamper myself every so often.

Last night I tried out Suzie's homemade sugar scrub as a pampering treatment. This morning I treated myself to a delicious and healthy breakfast pizza. If you are curious about either, check out these links below:

Progress, July 14, 2013

I have been doing pretty good. I attained the first goal, but missed the second one by 1.6 pounds. My next goal is to lose that 1.6 pounds (total of 5 lbs. since beginning of the challenge) by 7/20, 6 days from now.

This past week I got an entire 7 tasks completed, which is better than any week so far. That comes to 29 tasks since the beginning of the challenge, which means I only have 11 more tasks to perform in order to reward myself with either $15 or $25 for pampering products, depending on when I reach the goal. I think I will be able to "win" a full $25, because July 27th is the target date for that, and is 13 days from now.

7/27/13 Update

I have done 7 exercise tasks this week, and have decided that 6-7is much more realistic than 8. If I do more than 6 in a week, I will be happy, but I already get so much exercise in one week! For example, those 7 exercise tasks, as well as the walking I do on work days, and while running errands comes down to this:

  • Over 2 hours of walking
  • 30 minutes doing cardio in the gym
  • Working out my arms twice
  • Exercising my abs and legs once
  • Going up the stairs three times (195 stairs each time = 585 stairs)

Scenic walking trail at Wickham Park in Manchester, CT
Scenic walking trail at Wickham Park in Manchester, CT | Source

In Conclusion

I hope you have enjoyed my article, and that I have given you some good ideas.

What do you think of this article? Do you have any other ideas for a great reward? I like hearing from my readers, so feel free to comment!


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