The new year is the time when everyone makes big plans for the 12 months ahead. Some people don't bother to make resolutions. Either they're happy as they are, or they don't see the point when they know they can't keep them. But if you've made resolutions this year, I'm sure you want to see them through. Lots of people I know choose to set health-related goals, but they struggle to follow through. It's especially hard just after Christmas, in the depressing slump of January! So here are my top tips to keep to your health and fitness resolutions, instead of giving up after two weeks.
Create a Solid Plan
One thing you need to do is create a plan that you can fulfill. Some people choose something that's too vague, like "get fit", "eat more healthily" or "lose weight". These are all admirable things to do, but how do you know when you've done them? They are big things to aim for, with not much definition. If you want to fulfill your goals, you need to set fixed targets to reach for. You might have one final destination, such as losing two stone or running a marathon. But you should have smaller goals too that you can reach each week and day. If you don't know where to start, look for a diet and exercise plan that will suit your lifestyle. It will give you something to follow without having to create your own set of rules.
Some people get excited about how their resolutions will change their life. They start making a huge list of things they're going to achieve, but it can all be too much. You need to be honest with yourself about what you can achieve. Of course, that doesn't mean you should underestimate yourself. You just need to consider what you have the time and energy for. Will you really be able to run three times a week, while eating cleanly and getting a solid nine hours of sleep each night?
One Thing at a TimeYou need to build yourself up if you want to reach your goal. Your willpower needs to be stretched and exercised to improve your self-control. So you shouldn't try to make all the change you want at once. Don't pick one week to start a diet, a new exercise routine, and a new sleep pattern. Do one thing at a time, and then add in something else once you're in the swing of it. You don't have to do all your resolutions at once. Who says they have to be something you do from January 1st?
Don't Give Up
You promised yourself you would exercise three times a week. But you've had a bad week and only managed to get one workout in. Might as well give up now, right? Try not to be so hard on yourself. If you slip up, it doesn't mean that your resolutions have to go out the window. Get back on the horse and return to reaching for your goals.
It won't be easy to stick to your resolutions, but you can do it if you're determined. And remember that you can pick them up again whenever you like.