January 2021 is quickly coming to an end, and where did this last month go???! Now is the time when those vows of eating the "best diet", working out every day and reaching that goal weight starts to feel like quite the task and you may be starting to feel burnt out already. This is totally normal and its why a lot of people leave that New Year's resolutions in January.
So did you do something wrong?? Did you fail in some way? NO! There's nothing wrong with wanting something better for yourself and striving to be a healthier version of yourself. We all have times when we create unattainable goals. When we decide to do the all-or-nothing approach to health. We cut out all the "unhealthy" foods, we drink that extra water, we set a step goal along with a calorie goal for the day. We allow ourselves no flexibility within our goals, and then when we can't reach them, we throw in the towel!
The best lesson I've learned in my time pursuing wellness is that we have to stop looking at it as this intimidating path. You don't have to change every single habit you have, to better yourself. You have to remind yourself that this is a long-term journey. Give yourself the freedom to be patient in the coming months. Know that change takes time, and you most likely won't see results tomorrow, next week or maybe even next month, but healthy choices and a healthy mindset does pay off!
So what are my go-to tips? How do you set yourself up for success?!
1) Set Small Goals!
Yes we all have huge goals we want to achieve, but there are many steps to climb first. Set small achievable steps. You want to eat healthier? Don't just throw out all the food you think is "bad" for you, think about the good things you could add to your diet like more fruits and vegetables. You want to work out more? Don't just start lifting heavy weights at the gym with no training! Start moving more day to day. Get in more steps. Take a dance around your living room. Work your way up to those big changes! THE KEY IS SUSTAINABILITY!
2) Make Changes You Could See Yourself Keeping Up Long-term.
If you go into any workout or diet plan knowing you won't be able to keep it up long-term, then it isn't the right choice for you! We all know that person who does the no-carb diet and is constantly saying they know they can't keep it up much longer! That mindset already sets you up for failure, and inevitably you'll feel defeated for not keeping with it. But of course you can't keep doing something that makes you unhappy. No part of a health and wellness journey has to make you miserable! Think about your life and the things you'd be unhappy without. You don't need to cut those things out. Remember it's not an all-or-nothing mentality that leads to long-term success and sustainability for most people. Find the changes that you can make that are easy to live without. Once you start making small changes that you are successful with, the path gets easier.
These changes can be small. Want to cut back on soda but you drink 6 cans a day to stay awake?! DON'T JUST CUT IT ALL OUT! Start small, maybe cut back to 5 cans instead, and when that becomes easy, cut back a little more. Finding healthier alternatives can also be really helpful! While I truly believe no food needs to be eliminated from a diet, I know myself well enough to know that I love some foods so much I can't eat them in moderation! For those foods I have my healthy swap! My go-to indulgent food being ice cream!!
3) Acknowledge and Appreciate Small Victories.
With the world of social media constantly showing us huge transformation journeys, we forget that those people didn't just wake up one day a changed person. They had tons of small victories along the way that got them to the finish line. It's important to pay attention to these things in our own lives. Those small successes are what inspire us to keep working and pushing ourselves!
It doesn't matter how small these things are, every step is important. You took the stairs instead of the elevator? YOU ARE AMAZING! You picked a balanced meal over the appetizer sampler?! LOOK AT YOU GO!!! We truly don't spend enough time on that self love journey and when you truly love and appreciate yourself, all of life's' challenges become so much easier. Remember you are stronger than you know!
4) Take Notes or Journal Your Experiences.
Its so easy to forget where we started! To tell ourselves to give up because we will never reach our dreams, but writing it down is key to staying motivated! Write everything down, take photos, and pay attention. It's easy to miss how much easier an exercise is getting or the changes happening to our bodies. WRITE EVERYTHING DOWN! Write down the struggles too and see how much easier it starts to get and the motivation you find along the way.
You'll also appreciate these notes so much in the future. So you can look back on your journey and acknowledge your strength and determination. You'll really see the hard work you put in and know how much more you still have to give.
I really want to inspire people to keep putting in the work. When a diet or exercise plan doesn't work for you, it's not your fault. THE DIET OR EXERCISE PLAN IS TO BLAME. Yes you need to challenge yourself and put in some time, but it should not be something so completely unattainable you feel defeated every day. My goal is always to create a sustainable plan, one that challenges you but you can kick its butt and feel amazing after!
Also, I want to reminder you that no 2 people have the same path towards health and wellness. What works for someone else may not work for you. That's why you have to find the nutrition plan that works for your body, and the fitness plan that makes you happy. There are so many ways to reach your goals, so find the one that will work for you!
So happy post New Years Resolution season! February is your time to shine. Let's start by setting some attainable goals and hyping ourselves up. I'll be here along the way to inspire and give tips! For direct questions, you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WE CAN DO THIS TOGETHER! AND NEVER FORGET... FITNESS IS FOR ALL!