Time flies by fast, and before you know it the New Year is upon you. Do you remember what New Year's resolution you made at the beginning of this year? Did you stick to it? According to studies, there's around an 88% chance you will have answered "no" to that question. Research shows that 88% of New Year's resolutions made end up in failure. In fact, many people do not even stick their resolutions past the first week.
Unfortunately, willpower is not exactly our strongest trait and over the years we grow stubborn and inert in our everyday routines. Breaking old habits is difficult, and creating new, more positive ones can be even harder. Why? Because it takes extra work that's why! Can you really blame us though? As adults our lives are already inundated with a million things to do and remember. Between work, family and our social lives, we barely have enough time to squeeze in any downtime, and when we actually do, the last thing most of us want to do is drag out our old fitness equipment or hit the gym. However, "hitting the gym" is exactly what most of us resolve to do come January 1st. In fact, studies show that the most common New Year's resolutions center around diet, health and exercise.
While it is easy to get excited and energized about a fitness goal at this time of year, once the honeymoon stage wears off and life goes back to normal, it's not so easy to stick to those fitness goals you so ambitiously set for yourself on December 31st. To ensure that you stick to your fitness goals this year, here are some easy tips to remember.
Set Realistic Goals – Resolving to look like a Victoria Secret model or to have muscles like Arnold Schwarzenegger is not realistic. Planning to work out for 30 minutes 3 times a week, or to lose 5 lbs is. Setting difficult, impractical fitness goals will only leave you feeling frustrated, disappointed and will absolutely discourage you. Setting the bar too high is the # 1 way to sabotage your health goals. It is better to set small achievable goals and consistently work at them on a continuous basis. As you meet these small achievements along the way you will feel more confident and encouraged to push on.
Be Specific – Saying you want to "lose weight" or "eat healthy" this year is another surefire way to set yourself up for failure. You need to set specific goals for yourself. Resolve to lose a certain number of pounds by a certain date. Make up your mind to eliminate snacking after 8 pm or to stop buying your favorite carton of ice cream every week. You need something concrete that you can visualize and manage. Saying you want to lose 20 pounds this year can seem intimidating at first, but if you break it down over 48 weeks, that's only half a pound each week! Which is a very manageable goal.
Devise a Plan – If you do not construct a feasible plan to follow, then it will be a lot easier to get off course with your fitness goals, because well, you do not even have a course in the first place … Write down the details of your diet and fitness plan of action. Set weekly goals and stick to them. Reward yourself for your accomplishments and do not dwell on road bumps and setbacks. Forgive yourself, move on and get back on track.
Sticking with your New Year's resolutions will not be easy, but it is doable. If you set manageable goals and have a specific plan set in place, then you will be much more likely to find success.