Top 6 Ways to Stick To Your New Years Fitness Resolution
Making a fitness resolution for the new year is very common. Unfortunately, it’s also common to lose motivation to meet these goals within a few months or even a few weeks. It can happen to anyone. You want to get in shape, lose weight, tone up and just feel better overall. But then life gets in the way. With work and family obligations it’s easy to push fitness goals to the side and focus on what’s in front of you at the current moment. You’ll be happy to know that it doesn’t have to be this way. There are ways to maintain motivation and reach your goals.
Setting small goals in order to accomplish your fitness resolution is a great method to keep yourself motivated. It also helps to reward yourself with something fun when you reach a goal. Keep yourself accountable with a friend or loved one and you can even find someone to share your fitness resolution or weight loss journey with. Most importantly be realistic with your goals.
1. Ease Yourself In – Set Small Goals
You may have an end result of losing 30 or 40 pounds, perhaps even more. But losing weight the right way takes time and hard work. Set a goal to lose 1 or 2 pounds each week for your fitness resolution. Some weeks you’ll achieve more and it will feel so great that you’ll want to continue. If your goal is to fit a certain clothing size or perhaps you want your body to look a certain way, start out knowing that it’s not going to be an immediate thing. When you have a small and reachable goal that doesn’t take as long you’ll feel so proud of yourself when you get there and you’ll naturally want to continue. This is key.
2. Don’t Feel Guilty – Reward Yourself
When you reach one of your small goals, reward yourself with something fun. This shouldn’t be a food reward but rather something that you love to do. If you enjoy shopping, allow yourself a morning or evening alone to find a new outfit for the body you’ve been working so hard for. Go out pamper yourself, get a massage, take a day alone to do an outdoor activity you never have time for… Your fitness resolution doesn’t have to be all pain and sweat!
3. Pair Up – Find Someone to Keep You Accountable
A significant other or friend can keep you motivated to stay on track with your fitness resolution goals. Share with them your short term and long term wishes and then let them in on the progress you’re making. If you know someone on a similar journey you can work together to meet your goals. Having someone to work out with or someone to share healthy recipes with can help you know that you’re not alone on your journey. Sharing your successes and setbacks with someone who knows your situation can help you stay on track.
4. Don’t Set Unreachable Limitations with Food
Maintaining a healthy diet is important throughout your journey but you have to make an eating plan that you can see yourself following for years to come. This in a lot of cases does not mean completely eliminating favourite foods; rather limit your favourites or come up with healthy versions of them. A good example of this is chocolate. If you’re a chocolate lover, a quality piece of dark chocolate every once in a while, even a couple of times a week, is not going to delay your goals. It may actually help you stay on track to know that you can still have your favourite foods. If you love pizza, make it at home. Thin crust pizza loaded up with lean meat and vegetables can actually be a great meal that satisfies your craving but doesn’t derail your goals to get healthier.
If you’re not very kitchen savvy, there are many sites and blogs that can help you learn to prepare your favourites in a healthier way with better ingredients that will save you eating something that is loaded with salt and sugar and could derail your fitness resolution goal.
5. Be Realistic with Long Term Goals
Having a long term goal gives you something to work towards but be realistic with your desired outcome. Losing a great number of pounds as part of your new years fitness resolution can help you feel better about yourself both mentally and physically and of course will improve your health overall, but you need to be sure you’re doing it the right way. Talking to a doctor can help you find a realistic time frame for your goals. Setting a goal that isn’t reachable will only cause grief when the end results aren’t what you’re expecting. It’s better to set a more conservative goal, then you may even surpass that and feel even better about the whole process.
6. Gym Memberships Aren’t Always The Answer –
Find A Workout You Enjoy
If you can’t realistically see yourself going to the gym several times a week, then don’t purchase that pricey membership. Many gyms will sign you up for a trial period rather than long term contract which is a great way to try it out (just be careful and read through any forms before signing).
Maybe you’d rather jog outside, or even do some hiking. Swimming or biking are also great cardio options. If you have someone who’s also on a fitness journey perhaps you can take a class together. The point is that joining a gym isn’t always the automatic answer as exercise comes in so many forms, so find something that works for you.
For many people, working out first thing in the morning offers a great start to the day. But for others a lunch break workout or evening exercise is what works best for them.
Remember, you will likely have setbacks. It happens to everyone but don’t let that throw you off track. If you have a bad day and decide you want a huge bowl of ice cream because you’re feeling bad, that doesn’t mean you’ve lost. Just get right back up the next morning and start again. Always remember that food is fuel for your body, not a friend. The better food you eat the better you will feel and the better your body can do what it’s supposed to do. Setting small goals that lead to a bigger goal can help you stay motivated. It’s also a good idea to have a friend or love one to keep you accountable. Make sure you’re not overreaching with your long term goals and find a way to make it work for your lifestyle. All these tips are great for reaching fitness goals or even goals in other aspects of your life.
I hope this article helps you on your path – do share your own experiences with us!