With the new year officially upon us now, countless individuals are trying to get back on track towards a healthier lifestyle! This will typically include both regular exercise, good nutrition, and more health conscious choices.
It’s no small task to get started and an even more daunting task to stay on track for a period longer than 2 weeks. With so many failed attempts in previous years, let’s talk about ways you can ensure you not only stick to your New Year’s resolutions, but exceed them!
7 Fitness Mantras To Accomplish Your Fitness Goals
1. Be realistic about your fit goals
First and foremost, be clear and realistic about your goals. Whether it be fat/weight loss, muscle gain, or simply moving and eating a better balanced diet, you need to determine what you ultimately want and then come up with a plan that you can stick to.
Once you decide what your ultimate goals are, you will be that much closer to being able to eat and train accordingly. Also, keep in mind that fitness goals based solely on weight and the numbers on the scale may eventually cause you to lose momentum. Once you hit your ‘goal’ weight, then what happens?
Conversely, if you struggle to hit a certain number on the scale you may only find yourself discouraged. It’s during those sticking points that most people will simply give up and resort back to their old ways. Focus on the bigger picture, the lifelong healthy picture.
2. Have a plan
Second, once you have your goals set up, it’s time to come up with a plan! Think about how you are going to meet your goals. Are you going to have to meal prep in order to prep for your work week? What meals will you make? Are you going to need to wake up earlier to get to the gym? Will you need to set up child care in the afternoon to make your spin class?
Take some time to really think about all of those details that are bound to come up in life and figure out how you can tackle them. If you troubleshoot them now, there are less chances for excuses later. Write down you goals and write down how you plan to achieve those goals.
3. There’s no “ONE WAY” of eating or training
Third, be aware that there is not ONE way of eating or training that is ‘the best’. By now you have probably been told that eating ‘clean’ or Paleo or vegan is the ultimate way to lose weight or be healthy.
When it comes down to it, science tells us that it comes down to calories in VS calories out. This doesn’t mean you can load up on all of the donuts and ice cream you want to though. 500 calories of lean protein, complex carbs, and veggies is going to look (and feel) a whole lot different than 500 calories of dessert.
In order to sustain any way of eating for an indefinite period of time, think about things more flexibly. Don’t look at things quite so black and white. Much of life itself is a gray area, nutrition isn’t any different. Try looking up a program like flexible dieting (aka IIFYM)
If a diet plan bans a certain food or food group that you know will make it difficult for you to stay on track, you are almost setting yourself up for failure. Moderation and balance will equal sustainability. Your nutrition and training have to work for YOU and your lifestyle.
4. Don’t make yourself suffer, find a training style you enjoy
Fourth, when it comes to training and moving your body, don’t jump into something that you hate. If you find a program that requires you to run 5 miles a day and you absolutely HATE running, chances are you will eventually find excuses why you shouldn’t run at all. In order to stay motivated and excited about exercise, find activities you truly enjoy.
Again, the point here is to create a lifestyle based around making you feel good about yourself on the inside and out. Don’t be afraid to try new things, but once you determine you don’t enjoy the activity, move on and find something new that excites you! HAVE FUN!!!
5. Take it slow
Fifth, instead of making huge drastic changes in your life all at once, take things slow. Begin by trying to make things “habit”. When you begin to do things out of habit, it will miraculously turns into your new lifestyle.
For example, anyone who is extremely into fitness and overall health knows how important drinking water is everyday. If you are someone who has struggled with this in the past, set a goal of drinking 2 glasses of water a day, then 3, then 4, and so on.
Eventually you and your body will become so accustomed to drinking that amount you just naturally do it without even thinking about it. Instead of staying up late, make it a point to get to bed 10 minutes earlier each night until you can wake up and feel totally refreshed and ready to attack the day and your goals!
6. Comparison is the thief of joy
Sixth, remember this is YOUR journey. Don’t let comparison steal your joy. Go at your own pace, according to your own plan, and make sure you are always finding motivation within yourself.
The worse thing anyone can do while getting & staying on track with their health is comparing where they currently are to where someone else is. We are all unique and should not be discouraged by looking at where someone else may be at on THEIR journey.
Again, if you are looking at this for the long term, it doesn’t matter where you are exactly as long as you are making progress and striving to be better everyday.
7. Be serious about your goals
Seventh, be serious about your goals, but not so serious you begin letting fitness take over every aspect of your life. Yes, health and fitness should be a part of your daily life in some way, shape, or form, but it should NOT define who we are.
Far too many people become so obsessed with their bodies and ‘goals’ that they lose sight of everything that ultimately matters the most… the people around them who they should be getting healthy for.
Enjoy your relationships, don’t be afraid to eat off plan every now and then, be social, live a life that is FULL of laughter and good times and FOOD. Never miss out on an opportunity to be around other simple because of your training or nutrition. Stay focused on your goals, plan ahead, and schedule accordingly.
Once we begin to look at overall health a bit differently, staying on track becomes so much easier. Being motivated, small daily changes, moving our bodies, making better choices when it comes to food, having non scale/weight related goals, being flexible, and having a plan. When these all come together, being fit and healthy is a piece of cake (that you should definitely have a slice of)!