Time for New Year’s Resolutions! Since you’re here, you probably made some fitness-based resolutions. We think that’s fantastic and we want to help you stick with them!
Here are some tips to help you stay on track:
1. Don’t rely on your level of motivation or emotions. Just do it!
Action is generally the prerequisite for motivation, not the other way around. If you think you need to wait for some inspiration before you start your new exercise routine and/or nutritional plan, you could be waiting for a long time. Many sources suggest that new habits take a minimum of three consistent weeks to form, and sometimes longer.
2. Aim low to begin with.
Many New Year’s resolutions aim to change way too much, way too soon – and are soon completely abandoned due to unrealistic commitments and goals, as well as due to insufficient ‘how-to’ information. Instead of declaring that your goal is to lose 40 pounds, or to triple your strength – start with a target that’s more reasonable, like losing 3 to 5 pounds in the first month, or perhaps lifting weights that are 10 to 20% heavier than normal, then proceed from there.
3. If you can’t resist temptation, take it out of the kitchen!
Even athletes are human beings, and are influenced by the five senses – touch, taste, smell, sound, and sight! Practical Fitness Tips recommends removing all ‘bad temptations’ from your home – or, if living with others, at least removing as much as possible from sight. This includes all junk foods, sugary snacks, chocolate, alcohol, ice cream and other similar items.
Obviously, if you know in advance that you will be entertaining guests on a certain evening, there is nothing wrong with purchasing a few items on that day – and a quantity suitable for that evening only – no purchasing ‘Buy 3, Get 1 Free’ items! If you have nothing to ‘tempt’ you in the house in the first place, you can save yourself hundreds of calories per week.
4. Don’t be a perfectionist.
Don’t beat yourself up over the occasional slip – whether it involved missing a few too many workouts, or ‘giving in’ to your diet on a Friday night while out with friends. An ‘all-or-nothing’ approach can be determinantal, as life doesn’t generally follow a consistent and predictable path – including in the New Year. Expect to slip-up from time to time, and when it happens, just get right back on track immediately afterwards. If it makes you feel better, if you ate or drank too much at a particular meal (or entire weekend!), simply increase the intensity level of exercise and consume slightly fewer calories during the next few days – no problem! Focus on your weekly calorie consumption, not just daily.
5. Tell your family, friends and colleagues.
Speaking of ‘giving in’ on a Friday night, one way to minimise such occurrences is to share your goals with everybody you know. A roommate or family member will be less likely to offer you a slice of cake if they know you’re trying hard to reduce your calorie intake!
Find somebody with a similar goal, and keep one another accountable by checking in with each other regularly to make sure you’re both on-track.
How do you plan to stick to your resolutions? Share your advice here!
Source: Adapted from Practical Fitness Tips.