New Year. New You!

Steps to successfully completing your health and fitness goals this year!

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Happy New Year!  This is the time of year that everyone wants to set their resolutions or goals for the upcoming year. The majority of the time when people set resolutions, they don’t accomplish them.  Mostly because they set themselves up for failure. They don’t have the correct structure or process. So how can you set a health and fitness goal that you can accomplish?  What is the process that leads to success? Here are my key steps to being successful in your goal setting this year!

Step 1. Be specific. To set a health and fitness goal you need to be specific.  Don’t just say I want to lose weight, instead use, “I want to lose 20 pounds.”  Don’t say, “I want to run more,” instead use “I want to run a 10K,” or “I want to run a half marathon.”  Maybe you just want to get in better shape or stay healthy, then make a goal to workout 3 days a week for 45 minutes.  Then make another goal half way through the year to workout 5 days a week for 45 minutes. Our brains don’t process things that are vague, so clearly identify your goals with what, when, and how.

Step 2. Write it down.  Something awesome happens when you write down your goals. Not typing it in your phone or iPad, but physically write it down on paper. It takes it from your brain and starts the process of making it a reality.  Write your goals down and place  them somewhere you can see it every day so they are consistently present in your mind. Personally, I like to set my goals by the side of my bed so when I wake up in the morning, there it is – my goals!  It starts my day with motivation, focus, and excitement.

Step 3. Accountability. You need accountability to be successful. Unfortunately, we can easily let ourselves off the hook, saying things like: I can miss class today or I will walk tomorrow instead of today. But if you are meeting a friend at a workout class or for a walk you wouldn’t let them down, because they’re your friend and they’re counting on you, this is accountability. Someone that can keep you accountable could be an online group where you have to check in, a friend who will keep you accountable, a coach, or a teacher. Let this person know your goals and your plan then ask them to help you stay accountable. And even better if you can find a friend who is also setting health and fitness goals.

Step 4. Diet plan.  It is important if you are setting a health and fitness goal that there is a diet plan portion.  They say that fitness is 80% what you eat. Personally I don’t “diet”.  I eat healthy because I love it, it makes me feel good.  I haven’t always had a healthy diet, but step by step I changed my diet and my taste buds.  Now I crave healthy options instead of unhealthy ones.  Start by finding a diet structure that works for you. One of my favorites is not eating any carbs after 4pm.  Not a huge diet change but something that will make a big difference.  There is so many options and resources to finding a diet plan that works for you and doesn’t make you hate it. Because it you hate it, you won’t do it. You can always take it step by step.

Step 5. Set real and tangible goals. Don’t set a goal to lose 100 pounds in one month.  First of all, it isn’t safe and it isn’t tangible.  Set a goal to lose 5 pounds in a month, then set another goal to lose another 5 pounds the next month.  Don’t set a goal that you are setting yourself up for failure, set one that you know if you work at it you can do it.

Step 6. Come outside your comfort zone. Yes your goal should be tangible but they should also be outside your comfort zone and scares you in a good way.  In a way that you say to yourself this is so cool and it would be amazing if I could do this. And yes you can!

Step 7. Have a reasonable time frame. Goals should be fast approaching, 1 to 3 months.  A goal much farther than that seems to out of reach and chances of you procrastinating are high.  Set a goal in January for February or March.  Then in April set another goal for 2-3 months out and so on. Also, it is super important to put an exact date.  You must know what it takes first before you set your time frame.  For example, one pound of fat is equal to 3500 calories, so if burn 500 calories a day you can lose 1 pound of fat in 7 days. Or if you want to run a marathon and currently you aren’t running more than 5 miles at a time, then allow time to build up to the 26.2 miles.

Now you are ready! Set your goals and make 2016 amazing!

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