How to Accomplish Your Fitness New Year Resolution

Picture it: You’re sitting around the Christmas tree, possibly in a half-drunken stupor, and someone brings up their new year’s resolutions. They want to lose weight, get in shape and live a healthier lifestyle.

Sounds easy, doesn’t it? But wait a minute? How can someone who just spend the last 364 days eating like there is no tomorrow want to change a habit that’s become so comfortable? Simply put: Setting goals gives you motivation. That’s the great thing about resolutions. It gives us a chance to commit to something and start off fresh. However, while these goals are admirable, it takes dedication.

Before you embark on your fitness journey, there are a few things to keep in mind. As awesome as working out is, for sustainable weight loss, you need to combine it with a healthy diet and quality sleep. Trying to reach your fitness goals without proper rest and nutrition is like trying to ride a bike with a flat tire. Sure, you can get started, you will never reach your destination. The same holds true when trying to reach your fitness goals. You have to do more than simply show up. It’s a complete lifestyle change, which involves many moving parts.

Determine Your Goals

If you don’t set goals, how will you ever know what you want? Fitness goals, although they sound simple enough, are something many don’t take into consideration. If you decide to get in shape, what does that mean? Does it mean that you want to lose weight? Does it mean you want to add muscle mass? Depending on who you ask, the answer could be dramatically different. And, far too often, the statement is vague.

Make a Plan

Without a concrete plan, you probably won’t get far. Your strategy should call for consistent action, which propels you forward on a daily, weekly and monthly basis. For example, if you’re making healthier eating habits a priority, set aside enough time to plan healthy meals each week. If your goal is to hit the gym at least three times a week, carve out enough time and pencil those sessions in.

Create Healthy Habits

The way we live is based on a string of habits. In fact, where you are right now on both a physical and mental level is the result of decisions you have made and routines previously established.

So, what does that mean? It means that you are only as strong as your habits. Habits between an avid tactical athlete and someone who has put their fitness goals on hold are dramatically different. In other words, you need to establish new, healthy goals. Everything you’ve been doing up to this point needs to be forgotten. It takes two weeks to break a habit and a lifetime to enforce a new one. Taking a mindful approach to changing bad habits and replacing them with healthy ones.

To get started, think about the habits you’d like to change, and then create a list of habits you’d like to create. Since all habits are comprised of triggers, routines, and rewards, you need to align your fitness goals accordingly. What is prompting you to get in better shape? What kind of routine will you follow to break the previous trigger of not exercising regularly? Finally, how will you reward yourself for following through?

Starting a new fitness routine isn’t always easy; however, it will always be worth it. Be accountable for your actions and the rest will fall into place.