I recently read an article about new year’s resolutions and the author was voicing his dislike for them. I have to say that I agree! I don’t agree with the messages that the “new year, New you” convey, what is so magical about January 1st in helping us acheive our goals? The 1st day of the year will not make it easier to take the plunge and the commitment towards a better and healthier lifestyle. The commitment has to come from YOU and not a trainer with “I am your new year’s resolution” written on the back of his/her shirt. Sure, they can help you in acheiving your goals but the secret to a change is that you will only be successful if you put in the effort and if you have enough motivation and commitment. That is all…. Sounds pretty simple eh? Well, it is not always as easy for everyone to quit cold turkey. For those who are used to eating unbalanced meals and not working out, a switch requires more than motivation, it requires goal setting and planning.
Although I said earlier that I did not agree with the “new year resolution” stigma I have to say that the business I work in certainly appreciates the increase acknowledgement of our services at this time of year! My challenge is ensuring that the people who join a gym or start a fitness program on January 1st as part of the “new year’s resolution” trend decide to make a change in their lifestyle for good. I rack my brain to find ways to keep these people engaged, to carry them over the 1st steps and make them life long exercisers and healthy eaters! I urge you to think about what it was that made you switch over and become one of us. For me, it was one bad injury/surgery, I was quickly converted after that. I knew I had to stay with it to prevent and sooner than later I joined the movement and I have not looked back since.
That being said, if the idea of a new year, a clean slate, a new decade inspires you and makes you want to do thing better and be different, here are some tips to make your goals and resolutions more manageable:
1. Set resonable goals for yourself. They should be attainable and defenitely be able to be completed in one year’s time. Remember baby steps at a time.
2. Break down your action plan. Sure anyone can say: “I will join a gym and loose 15 lbs” but how will you acheive this goal? what types of workouts will you engage in? what will your diet convert to? will you seek the help of experts? How will you stay motivated? Thinking of all the obstacles that could stand in your way as you are setting your goals will help you come up with solution for them.
3. Make the commitment. I cannot stress this one enough- take the plunge, jump off the bridge, swim… Trust that you can do it. Say goodbye to your old habits and believe that these new ones are positive and that you can stick to them.
4. Don’t create a mountain for you to climb. Set a realistic meal plan and exercise program for you that sets you up for success. Hasn’t your mother ever told you” Everything in moderation”; well this rule applies here. Don’t cut out all the foods that you love, make some compromises that you will be able to follow.
5. Be patient. If it was so easy, don’t you think everyone would be doing it? Things take time, don’t give up. Know that experts say that it takes about 21 days for something to become a habit. Give your body some time to adjust to your new plan. You should also expect some plateaus along the path & use them as an opportunity to try something new or shake up your routine.
Remember, commitment is your biggest challenge. Picture yourself acheiving your goal, our minds are more powerful than we think. If you see it, you can acheive it. It takes time, but once you reach a goal, you will get such gratification and you will never look back. Trust me, once you put in the effort, you can embrace the results sooo much more. Happy planning everyone. Until next time, keep moving…