January’s come and gone. The fitness classes and parking lots are less crowded, and the New Year’s resolutions are starting to lose their steam. If any of this sounds familiar, you’re not alone.
Each year millions of people embrace resolutions to get fit or lose weight. For some, the month of January is exhilarating, and they find themselves full of energy and motivation to keep an eye on the prize.
But for many others, this once-a-year promise to change their life begins to run out of steam before the first month of the year is over.
If you’re looking to make 2019 the year you stick with your health and fitness goals, we have you covered.
Make Each Day Count
Approaching a resolution as a lifestyle change makes it easier to adapt into your life. That means, using each day towards your fitness goals, even if in a small way. For example, use Sunday for planning meals and workouts for the week. Use Wednesday as a mid-week check to see if you need to slow down or push harder, and use Saturday as a reflective day to look back and log progress.
Create a Routine
When the January hype wears off, you’ll need to find other ways to stay in your fitness groove. One proven method is to create a routine. You’re more likely to be successful if you plan ahead and set specific fitness goals for yourself. At the start of every week, look at your schedule and carve out 25 minutes a day, five days a week to dedicate to a resistance routine. You can also use this strategy to schedule cardio time three to five days a week and save a few hours on the weekend for meal prepping for the upcoming week.
Do Away With Obstacles and Excuses
The less convenient it is to exercise and eat right, the less likely you are to be successful. If you join a gym 30 minutes from your home, let’s be realistic–you’re probably not going to go. Don’t let it be an excuse; keep moving from the moment you wake up to the moment you go to sleep. Get at least 10,000 steps a day, walk around the block a couple of times when you wake up, during lunch, coffee breaks and after dinner.
Kick Your Bad Habits
While maintaining motivation to improve your fitness goals may seem difficult, falling back into bad habits can be a deal breaker. Don’t fall back into the habit of grabbing a muffin with your morning coffee or taking the elevator or escalator instead of the stairs. Instead, make sure to eat breakfast before you leave the house to reduce your cravings for baked goods, and take the stairs at least most of the way. These may seem like little habits, but they play a key role into the bigger picture.
Refocusing resolutions sometimes requires thinking outside the box. One way to get back on track is to find little ways to stay active throughout the day. For example, try walking meetings during work instead of sitting through them. Play music to dance to while making breakfast, lunch and dinner or do 10 push-ups and squats every time you complete a task for the day (laundry, work project, etc.).
Enlist the Help of Friends and Technology
If you’re in need of a little motivation, enlist the help of your friends. They can encourage you to stick to your plan, offer support and participate in healthy competition. If your friends are losing weight, you’re far more likely to do the same.
Focus on the Process
Focus on the process. While it’s great to have end goals, they can actually hurt our progress if they feel too out of reach or if we judge our success on the outcome of one goal. You may find more success if you focus on the processes, methods and techniques you use to work towards your goal. Celebrate how hard you’re working and how dedicated you are, rather than how close you’ve come to an end goal.
Work With a Trainer
Connecting with a fitness professional who can help keep you accountable and create the right program for you is the best way to get back on track. A coach can help give you the momentum you need.