Getting fit. Losing weight. Being healthy.
These are all common New Year resolutions.
The bad news?
According to statistics the majority of people are unlikely to achieve them.
However, if you want to beat the statistics, here are the top three golden rules:
- Plan, Plan, Plan
Planning exactly how you will achieve your goals (including stating explicitly when, where and how your new behaviours will happen) will triple your chance of success.
For example, don’t just say “I’m going to exercise more in 2017”.
Write down exactly how you plan to exercise more:
“During the next week, I will do at least 20 minutes of jogging on Tuesday and Thursday at 9am.”
The writing down part is important – goals that are committed to paper are much more likely to be achieved.
- Give yourself a break
We’re all human.
If you push yourself too hard too fast, you’re simply going to dread your new behaviour (leaving you likely to revert to old habits).
For example, saying “I’m going to go to the gym everyday” or “I’m not eating any carbs” (both of which are not advisable goals in any case) will result in burn out and leave you absolutely dreading your new fitness routine.
It’s essential to set achievable goals.
Even then, its important to accept there will be days where life gets in the way of your goal.
Just make sure your rest days don’t turn into rest weeks.
- Set measurable goals
What’s the point in setting goals if you can’t measure and celebrate your success along the way?
While it’s tempting to link a fitness related goal to the number on the scales, I don’t recommend this (as scales don’t paint an accurate picture of health and fitness progress).
Try setting goals like:
“By September I will be able to do X number of push-ups / run 4km.”