We have all been guilty of making fitness goals we can’t keep. As time wears on, and the weeks turn into months, our dedication starts to decline. This year, make a plan to help yourself stick to your goals all year long. Here are four tips to being able to do just that.
One of the biggest reasons we can’t keep our fitness resolutions? We set goals that just aren’t feasible to maintain over an extended period of time. It’s fantastic if you want to be able to bench press 200 pounds or if you want to drop four sizes, but lofty goals often lead to disappointment. Because the goal is so large, progress is going to seem miniscule. When it seems like we aren’t making progress, even when we are, we are more likely to become discouraged and unmotivated.
Instead of setting large goals that set you up for failure, set smaller, more realistic goals which allow you to see results more quickly. It could be adding a single pound each week to your reps, or going down half a dress size in a month or two. You also may want to ease into your routine. Habits aren’t established instantaneously, and so you may want to build on your routine every week. Do what you can, when you can, even if it’s just a few minutes a day to start, and you have still started.
To set more realistic goals, you may want to work with a fitness professional. Fortunately, you can find a variety of wellness experts online through freelance job platforms whether you’re looking to partner with a personal trainer, nutritionist, or dietician.
Share the load
If you can tell some of the people close to you what your small, short-term goals are, you may be more likely to see them through. You will have extra accountability, which can be motivating. You may also be able to persuade a friend to join you on your fitness journey. Having someone to work out with will not only keep you accountable for each day as it will be harder to justify not going, but it will make your experience more fun. It can be nice to have someone to talk to during your workouts or to help give you the confidence you need to go into the gym or class you’ve always wanted to try.
Don’t be harsh with yourself
It can be easy to fall into a cycle of self-punishment. If you miss a day, you may be hard on yourself. This cycle is counterproductive. It is suggested that negative self-talk can actually have a detrimental effect on your motivation and your self-control. You’re human, and you may make mistakes. It’s OK. Be gentle with yourself and understand that we aren’t perfect.
Also, don’t try to abstain from all the things you used to enjoy. If you give yourself small rewards along the way, you may be much more likely to stick to whatever plan you have crafted for yourself.
Find the routine for you
If you enjoy a routine, you’re more likely to persist with it. This is the perfect time to find things you may have been wanting to try, like hiking to get closer to nature while burning calories or learning about the benefits of yoga. Yoga teaches you to focus only on the present moment; being able to let go of your worries, even briefly, can be the best medicine for you. It may help bring peace to the chaos of your thoughts and teach you how to be aware of your body in a new and profound way. If you need a lift, check out some helpful yoga apps like Simply Yoga and Down Dog.
No matter what your goal, the result should be to feel good. Don’t be too hard on yourself, and find things that you actually enjoy doing. If the steps you take are small, you will be surprised by how far you can go over the period of a year.
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