New Years resolutions come in with the joy and hope of creating change…working towards goals that we want to achieve over the next 365 days. When it comes to health and fitness resolutions, I see individuals jumping into healthy eating lifestyles and fitness regimens with enthusiasm and a high amount of hope for success.
However as the weeks move on, I see New Year’s resolutions (as they pertain to health and fitness) begin to fade. Individuals lose momentum in working towards their goals and do not know how to get back on track. Or they cannot figure out what went wrong or why they were not successful from the start.
This is where New Year’s resolutions become derailed and a majority of resolutions end before the month of January is even over. Everyone, this is not the time to throw in the towel! This is the time to stand back, look at the puzzle, and figure out what path you need to take to get back on track.
To help you narrow down this path, below is a list of 5 New Year’s Resolution mistakes and how to get back on pace.
- Too many goals are set.
Individuals often want to lose weight, build muscle, reduce stress, have more time with family, eat healthier…and on and on and on. Here’s the thing…too many goals leave you feeling overwhelmed and not knowing which one to concentrate on first.
Solution: Identify which goals are most important for you and begin with #1.
- Goals are set at the top level and not looking deep down into what an individual really wants to achieve.
New Year’s resolutions often look for a “New Year, a New You”. But what exactly is the “New You”. Is the New You being 10, 20, 30+lbs lighter going to be who you want to be? Why? Is looking good in a bathing suite this summer going to bring you happiness with who you are? Why?
Often times, the goals that you are focused on are short term goals…goals that are lying just on top of the surface. The goals that you have for yourself often run deep.
For example, the reason I wanted to get stronger, and therefore pursuing powerlifting, is that I want to ensure I can run with my children, grandchildren and be self-sufficient for as long as possible. With the long line of health issues in my family and seeing my elders deteriorate, that is not a life I want to live if I can help it. So I work everyday to focus on a program that helps maintain my structural integrity, promotes my strength and eat in a manner that meets all of my goals, but allows me some fun when appropriate😊
Solution: Define your deeper goal. What is driving you towards something. Then figure out the steps of how to work towards your deeper goal.
- Individuals walk into the gym with no plan at all or a plan that is not a fit for them.
When you open the internet, social media, magazines (yes, they still print these 😊), etc. you are hammered with a multitude of fitness regimens focused on “Get your bikini body” or “Build Your Booty” or “Lose 10lbs in 10 days”…the list goes on. Or you see individuals on social media promoting the fitness program that worked for them…Lose weight and achieve results just like they did.
Here’s the thing, fitness is not one-size-fits-all. There are so many training methods to use and various set/rep schemes, it all comes down with what works for your body.
Solution: If you belong to a gym, look at investing in several personal training sessions. Movement in and of itself is fantastic but doing it with some guidance from a professional can set you up for success and minimize your chances for injury due to improper form and/or technique. $60-$200 for a trainer can go a long way when you think about the cost of doctors visits and/or other health care expenses if you a) do nothing or b) are injured because you wanted to save a few bucks and become injured during a work due to incorrect form or doing too much too soon.
If you are looking for long term support at a more affordable price, look into investing in online personal training. There are a variety of personal trainers online who focus on specific areas. Finding a trainer who meets your needs, offers you individualize training support (not just a template that they use for others seeking their help), is personable and fits your budget can be a huge win! With online personal training, you can workout on your own time, in a location of your choice, with a program that is built specifically for you.
- Individuals dive into drastic eating changes.
Oh the fad diets and detoxes…where do I begin? Food is meant to fuel your body and help you meet the demands of your daily life. Period. Cutting food out because it may help you lose weight and/or drinking smoothies made of apple cider vinegar, Tabasco sauce and honey may bring you short term results, along with a few other unforeseen results.
Diets and detoxes are a great way to create a deficit in calories, but they can also create a deficiency in vitamins, minerals, and nutrients that your body needs to function. Ultimately leading to potential health issues further on down the line.
At the end of the day, extreme diets and detoxes do not fix the current eating habits that keep you in your current situation.
Solution: Rather than going to the extremes, identify the areas that you need to improve on and focus on those first. For example, if you consume a soda or more a day, start off by reducing this number down to 0 and only consume on special occasions. Taking out empty calories such as soda, juices, and/or alcoholic beverages can make a huge change. From there, begin to look at other habits that can bring about a positive change…more fiber, veggies, less sweets, etc.
- A plateau occurs and individuals jump off the wagon.
Resolutions start off strong for many individuals and they see success. This is such a strong motivator. Then after a few weeks, the body levels out and tries to find a “normal”. This happens to everyone, whether you are a resolutioner starting your fitness journey or if you are an experienced athlete training for yourself or a competition. For someone who is new to a plateau, this can become a frustration and reduce motivation, eventually leading to dropping their focus on their goals they set for themselves.
Solution: Understand that as your body is taken outside of a “natural balance” (i.e. homeostasis), it wants to try and find it again. This is where individuals stop losing weight and/or seeing progress…the body is trying to level out and maintain a balance internally. At this point, this is when it is important to talk with a coach and/or trainer to discuss what you have done so far to determine how to proceed. Options can include: a) increasing your food intake slightly, which can be terrifying to think, but it does help; b) reducing the intensity of your training for a week or two, or c) taking a rest period away from your workout entirely or changing up the program to allow your body to reset.
Working with a fitness professional such as myself can help you find success with meeting your goals. I am trained to understand the body’s cues and responses in order to continue developing your program.
I hope that the information above has given you some insight into how to move forward with meeting your New Year’s Resolution. If you have you any questions regarding the information above, please message me or leave a comment below and I will address. If you are interested is learning more about training with me one-on-one, either in-person (located in Grand Rapids, MI) or online, please contact me to reserve your spot today!