As sure as the calendar page turns when the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve, many of us begin trying to make good on our New Year’s fitness resolutions. Yet although we may begin the year with good intentions, it’s notoriously difficult to stick with New Year fitness plans. Whether it’s to lose weight, become more active, reach a personal goal or some combination of those, setting fitness goals for the new year is easy — but accomplishing those goals is far more challenging.
There are a number of reasons why we have a hard time sticking to our New Year diet and exercise plan as the year progresses. Although many times it’s a simple lack of willpower that causes us to falter and revert to our habits before Valentine’s Day, it’s not always our fault that our fitness plans fall apart too soon. So you can stay motivated and focused on your fitness goals for 2019, here are the 9 BIG tips you can follow to help ensure that your fitness goals for next year stay within your reach.
1. Create MEANINGFUL goals that are important to YOU
We’ve all fallen victim to the endless online ramblings of the next big thing in weight loss and health management. What a nightmare it is to wade your way through the fads, the opinions, the judgments and of course the costs that can be involved purely for signing on!
And then there are the regrets. The regrets that you thought for some faint reason that this was “the one”. This was the diet, the routine that would make the difference only to realize a few days later that none of it is sustainable. None of it is relatable, and none of it offers a long-term investment into your aspirations.
YOUR GOALS – remember those? That’s where you need to turn yourself around, to reflect on what it is that matters to you, to your life current and to your future healthy happy journey. Once you have that clear path, that clear direction you can then set your sights on engaging in truly meaningful and aspirational activity to get you to that ultimate destination.
2. Take it one step at a time
So we have set our sights on the big picture. 2019 is the year for making it all the way and now we have to venture forth, with some trepidation no doubt, but with a song in our heart and a smile on our face. What next? Small steps make all the difference when our achievements seem out of sight and even a little pie in the sky.
Taking one bite at a time will increase your success by 100%! Imagine, as you make your way through the year by biting off just a little each day you will achieve. YOU WILL ACHIEVE!
On that note: First thing you need to know is your weight loss numbers. And we can help you there, try our New & Improved TDEE Calculator to know everything you need to know to successfully start your fitness journey.
3. Build Self-Discipline
We live in an age of instant gratification – movies on demand, shopping at the click of a button, and microwave meals zapped and on your plate in three minutes flat.
So it would seem that the prevailing mindset is that if I want that bar of chocolate, I want it now, and why shouldn’t I have it?
We can give you 100 reasons why not, starting with those love handles that sit so attractively over your belt on the back of your hips, but I am not going to be there when you’re staring at the candy counter in the petrol station.
You have to want to make a difference to yourself because, in the final analysis, it’s down to you and nobody else.
It takes discipline and strength of character to effect a fundamental change in any of our ingrained habits, but once you have momentum, the sense of satisfaction and well-being will become your constant companion, you can do it. Trust us!
4. Strength in numbers
We love our friends, we love our families, and we spend time being motivated by almost everyone we surround ourselves with. In fact we can find ourselves doing things we never dreamt of due to the power of peers. By engaging and surrounding us with like-minded, invested people we will naturally shine and take a few more bite size steps with ease. Give it a shot by training with a few friends. Success breeds success!
5. Train your brain
The brain is a key performance indicator that needs regular exercise just like your muscles. Keep fit active and keep fit healthy and it will ooze all sorts of good physiological stuff to keep your New Year resolution on track.
6. Plan for Success
In many cases, fitness plans fall apart simply because they’re too ambitious. Setting realistic goals and working to achieve them in increments yields more success in general than setting one overly ambitious goal. Rather than say you want to lose 50 pounds, start with losing 5 pounds and use your success there as the jumping-off point for the next 5 pounds.
7. Don’t Let Pain Derail Your Progress
A few aches and pains are inevitable when you begin a fitness regimen. Yet if the pain is too much to bear, you’re less likely to stick with your plan. That’s why stretching before exercising is so important, as is knowing how to cool down after you’re done. Remembering to do both of these can help prevent muscle and ligament damage that can leave you sore.
8. Take it to the limits
Setting limits to a healthier you is easier than you think. It’s not about self imposed prohibition on all food groups. It is about remaining sensible and thinking about your food intake, thinking about what it is that you are consuming and taking the time to run a little research. Perhaps start with your favorite guilty pleasure and see just what it is that makes this treat so irresistible. You may find a smaller portion is the way to go next time.
[Related Reading: How To Get The Most Out Of Your Workout Session]
9. Last But Not Least: Reward Yourself
The flip side of all that discipline is that you must also acknowledge your human frailties.
No one is a machine and every one of us responds well to incentives and pats on the back.
The way to achieve your goals and feel good in the process is to break your big plan into a series of smaller goals and each and every time you reach a mini milestone reward yourself.
How you do this is entirely personal, it could be a slap up meal, a new pair of shoes, or a night out with the boys. The occasional planned break from any disciplined regime can be refreshing for both the mind and the body.
Sticking to your fitness plan for the new year can be tough — to say the least. Though by remembering these tips, you can make it much easier to accomplish your fitness goals and have a happier and healthier 2019.