New Year’s Resolutions Six Week Checkup
Are your New Year’s resolutions going strong or going nowhere? After six weeks into a new year most of us have typically abandoned our list of resolutions. It doesn’t have to be that way!
One way to get back on track is to realize that every new day is an opportunity to improve yourself; you don’t need to wait for the next new year. Forgive yourself for last week’s lapse in your fitness program and focus on what you can do right now to tackle those New Year’s resolutions. Here are some tips that can turn your discarded resolutions into successes:
Lower your expectations. Trying to do too much too soon can set you up for failure. Work on one resolution at a time. When you feel like you have that one under control, add another resolution to your “to do” list. Make sure that you don’t neglect the first one as you work on the second.
Set specific, realistic goals. Rather than resolving to “lose weight,” make a specific statement such as, “I will fit into a size 8 bathing suit by June.” Then map out how you can realistically reach that goal through diet and exercise. This will help ward off procrastination and provide motivation.
Break down large goals into smaller ones. Set smaller goals that bring you closer to achieving your ultimate goal. If you are training for a marathon, set milestones that you want to achieve each month and keep a log of your workouts and weekly accomplishments. Reward yourself along the way as you become able to increase your duration or your speed.
Don’t be lured by “quick success” pitches. If you are desperate to lose weight and discouraged by your lack of progress, it’s easy to fall victim to advertisers who promise quick weight loss but only deliver short-term results. Remind yourself that to lose fat and keep it off you need to make permanent lifestyle changes. Balancing your caloric intake with your caloric expenditure — the “exercise more, eat less” strategy — may seem tedious but it is crucial to long-term success.
Make exercise a priority. You may have every intention to fit in an exercise session here and there, but the only way it’s going to get done on a regular basis is to make exercise a priority in your life. Get physically and emotionally invested in the benefits of exercise. After just a few short weeks of regular exercise, your body will begin to crave the activity. You will notice a mental boost after your workouts. Convince yourself that the positive effects of exercise outweigh just about everything else. Why? Because those effects will enhance every other aspect of your life!
Remember the internal payoffs, as well as the external. You may have resolved to sculpt a better body, but don’t forget the other perks that come from sticking to an exercise plan.
By remembering the internal changes that occur by exercising regularly, such as enhanced cardiovascular fitness, more energy and muscular strength, you can be more patient to realize the external benefits of an improved physique.
Develop a support network. Tell everyone your new year’s resolutions and ask for their support. Maybe you will discover that a friend will be your workout partner. Or your spouse will remind you to exercise and take care of the kids while you do. Maybe your mother’s skepticism will spur you to prove her wrong. And your children will be watching — you are their role model for good health!
Don’t let your new year’s resolutions fall by the wayside. Every day is a good day to start new.