A new year inspires many to resolve to lose weight, eat better, or sleep more. But when February rolls around, those goals are often left by the wayside. So, how do you avoid resolution failure? Preparation is the key to success, according to several fitness and health experts interviewed by the Washington Post. Here are their tips for achieving resolution staying power:
- Give your goal definition. A vague goal like “get healthy” can be difficult to achieve; instead, choose a specific goal like “lose weight.” Then, pinpoint actions you need to take to reach your goal, like walking for 30 minutes each day. Most importantly, be realistic—don’t expect to lose 50 pounds in a year. Choose a sensible goal, like losing 10 pounds; you can always shoot for another goal after attaining your first one.
- Practice your goal first. Block out time to work on your goal and set a calendar appointment. Maybe you set aside time to prep healthy foods for the week, or schedule trips to the gym every Monday and Wednesday morning. Then, try it out a couple weeks before January 1st to see if it works for your schedule in the real world.
- Get by with a little help from friends. Whether you join an existing one or create your own, finding a community of like-minded people who support your goals can give you a sense of belonging and purpose.
- Discover what your carrot is. If you’re motivated, you're more likely to stick to your goal. Figure out what motivates you before the year starts so you can turn to it if you get in a resolution rut. Do you get excited seeing your stats on a fitness tracker? Love chatting with friends at your run club? Enjoy working out to a favorite playlist? Can’t wait to mix up an experimental smoothie in your blender?
- Plan for the unexpected. Make a plan B for times when things don’t pan out. Find a restaurant offering healthy take-out for times when you can’t cook, or reschedule a missed workout when you can’t get to the gym at your regular time. If you have a recovery plan in place you’ll be more likely to stay on track.
Source: Washington Post