How to Keep Your New Year Fitness Resolutions

Jan 20, 2017
Tagged with: How to Keep Your New Year Fitness Resolutions

 

It’s the oldest cliché in the book: resolving to get fit for the New Year. So many people try and fail to keep a consistent schedule, but by February or March, they’re feeling discouraged and not even making an effort. That doesn’t have to be the story! Resolving to get fit in 2017 is a great goal, and you CAN succeed. It will take hard work and perseverance, but by the time 2018 rolls around, you’ll feel great—healthy, fit, and proud of your accomplishment. Here’s how to make that fitness resolution stick, even when the going gets tough.

Write it Down, Make a Plan

It’s not enough to write down a general goal like “This year, I want to get fit”. With such a vague goal, you won’t be able to recognize milestones as they come. Write down specific, realistic goals, then build on those goals as you gain strength and endurance. What is your motivation? If you want to lose weight, set a target pound loss and a goal date for that milestone. If you want to be stronger, set a number of pushups or a certain weight you’d like to lift. Once you’ve written down your plan, make a schedule for achieving it—consistency is key.

Start Small

You can’t get fit overnight—but you can burn out over time. Start slow to avoid injury, discouragement, and burnout. Small steps and mini-goals add up to big progress over time, so don’t sabotage yourself by starting out with difficult, overly intense workouts. 

Make it Easy

Working out is hard, whether you’re building up your strength while in a wheelchair, or training for a half marathon. But you don’t have to make it any harder for yourself. Think about what holds you back from exercising. Is it having to dig through drawers to find your workout clothes? Is it never having your shower supplies at the gym? Is it getting bored during your workout? Identify what makes you procrastinate and make it easier. That could mean having a gym bag packed at all times, laying out your workout clothes the night before, trying a new class with a creative teacher, or finding the right playlist to get you through your workout, but be sure to remove those obstacles so there’s no room for excuses.

Celebrate Little Achievements

Fitness is a lifelong journey, and if you don’t give yourself credit for your achievements, you’ll burn out eventually. Consider setting up a reward system for when you hit mini goals. Been eyeing a new jacket or GPS watch but can’t justify it? Make it a reward for when you can swim a mile without stopping, nail a tough yoga pose, or lift a certain weight.

Sign Up for an Event

Internal motivation to get fit can be hard to find. You may have good intentions, but sticking to your program and being consistent is difficult. Signing up for a race or other athletic event is a great way to stay motivated. An external deadline to reach your goals may be just what you need to succeed.

Don’t Punish Yourself

Many people fail to keep New Years’ fitness resolutions because they slip up, feel guilty, then give up. Slip ups are going to happen, and it’s important to not punish yourself when they do. Worse than punishing yourself is giving up—just because you missed one workout doesn’t mean you’ve failed. Keep going!

Author: Audrey Willis