Sometimes even the best intentions can’t help us keep our fitness resolution. In fact, three of the top New Year’s resolutions are to get fit, work out more and eat healthier. With so much at stake: how we look, how we feel about ourselves and our health and well-being, why is it still so hard to make that resolution stick? Making just a few specific changes to your resolution can keep you from being a statistic, and turn you into the fit and healthy person that you want to be!
If 50% of people who make a “get healthy” resolution fail in the first six months, wouldn’t you say that there is something wrong with our resolutions? Change the way you think about your resolution to keep yourself from being a slave to your workouts and from that quick burnout.
Time-Based Goal vs. Results-Based Goal
All too often, resolutions are generic and general. I’ll work out ‘more.’ I’ll eat ‘healthier.’ Give yourself some focus, buy a calendar and keep track of your hard work. Vow to exercise 4 days a week or a total of 16 days per month. Mark off those days that you hit the gym on your calendar, and you’ll see that you can take any day off that you want as long as you rack up 16 for the month. 16 in a row or 4 per week is still 16 days! You’ll likely see one of two results. First, you work out 4 days each week, and enjoy having days off, or you tally 16 days in a row, and your new addiction is no longer chocolate cake, but that runner’s high that you get when you leave the gym!
Time based goals are easier to follow than results based goals, because you either met it or didn’t, unlike a results based goal. A goal like “make my butt smaller” sets you up for failure. We like instant gratification, so marking that day off on the calendar can be a big deal.
Come up with a specific goal to reward yourself. If you work out 16 days, buy yourself a new pair of running shoes, or the cute yoga top that you’ve had your eye on. Then you can show off your new gear at the gym! Or splurge on a massage to work your newly buffed muscles. Just be sure to make it a number that you work toward, not a general word like ‘more’ or ‘healthier.’ Make it something you can measure.
Enlist a Partner
Get someone on the bandwagon with you, and whether they have the same goal or not, put it out there. Tell the people at the front desk at the gym, tell your best friend, cubicle mate, or in this day and age, update your status. Get others to keep you on track, and you’ll remember your goal every time you see them.
Buy some cheap equipment that you can use to squeeze in a few minutes of a workout in the busiest times. Get a jump rope or a stability ball, and a few little dumbbells. If your schedule is packed, knock out a 10 minute workout at home to keep you on track, and you won’t feel like you’ve failed.
Just making the resolution is a step in the right direction. Now get out there and make it happen!