4 Ways To Prepare For Fitness Success In The New Year
The new year is right around the corner, and we all know that’s when everyone starts making well-intentioned fitness resolutions. New Year, New Me, right? However, the reality is that most of these fitness resolutions have fallen by the wayside by February. So, before you start setting up those New Year’s resolutions, we’ve put together x ways you can set yourself up for fitness success in the upcoming new year.
1. Form Realistic Goals
Being determined is amazing, but it is important to be realistic. If you start by setting goals that are too demanding or difficult, you will likely be setting yourself up for failure rather than success. For example, let’s say your new year’s goal is to “run a marathon,” but you’ve never run more than an hour at a time before. This will be a near impossible goal to reach as you’ll surely get overwhelmed and burn out quickly.
Instead, formulate smaller, achievable goals. Instead of having the ultimate goal of “run a marathon” be what you try to work toward, break this goal down into smaller ones. For example, start by running 30 minutes a day, then extend to an hour, etc, to build your stamina.
If you’re trying to start working out more regularly, you don’t have to immediately start exercising 5 times a week. Start with just once a week, then add in more commitments.
Listen to your body, and more importantly, your fitness skill level. Rather than trying to leap head first toward a lofty goal, slowly build up your strength and skill. This way, you’re more likely to succeed, and once you keep succeeding it will be easier to continue pushing yourself to achieve more and bigger goals.
2. Seek Accountability
Having people around you knowing what your goals are can be another motivator for you to continue working towards them. Share what you are doing with the people around you. Knowing that you have the support of friends and family can not only inspire you, but hold you accountable to sticking to your resolutions. When people in your life ask about the progress of your goals, you won’t want to report back that you have given up. You will want to tell them that you are continuing to work hard to achieve what you want.
Another way to find support and accountability for your fitness success is to work with a personal trainer. Setting regular appointments with a personal trainer makes it harder to miss a workout session than if you were to try going to the gym on your own. Also, a personal trainer can customize a workout plan that fits your fitness level and makes it more enjoyable for you. They are also great motivators and pillars of support!
3. Reward Yourself
Whenever you hit your goal for the week, don’t be afraid to treat yourself! However, choose to reward yourself with something that won’t undo all your hard work. Rewarding yourself doesn’t mean eating a whole cake or skipping your workouts. Celebrate your successes with a weekend getaway, a night out with friends, a spa day, new workout gear, or a date night.
The process of rewarding yourself makes working out feel like a fun game when you hit your goals. Gamification of exercise helps make your workouts more enjoyable, and helps motivate you to stick to your exercise routine.
4. Make it Fun
You’re more likely to succeed in maintaining your fitness if you actually look forward to (or at least not actively hate) your workouts. So find something you like. If you like dancing, find dance-based workout classes like Zumba or barre. If you like playing tennis, sign up for classes or find a friend to play with. Typical workouts like running or high-intensity workouts can be great, but if you don’t enjoy them you can exercise in other ways. Do whatever gets you moving. If you don’t like what you’re doing, you’re not likely to continue doing them for long. If you’re not yet sure what kind of exercise you like, try a variety of classes or activities until you find one you enjoy (or at least can tolerate).
Another reason that people fail at sticking to their fitness goals is because they get bored with their workouts and lose motivation. Try to keep things interesting and fun. One way is to find a workout buddy. Having someone with similar goals and determination can keep you inspired and in check. You will push each other to work toward your goals. Or, if you find yourself quickly tiring of the same repetitive workouts, try new things. Find different workout routines or look for different activities like yoga, pilates, cycling classes, boot camps, TRX, etc. There are so many different gyms, machines, and classes to choose from. A personal trainer can also help switch up your workout routines so you don’t get bored of the same ones.