Did you know that the number one resolution made for 2014 is to lose weight? Sounds great, until you realize that under 10% of people who make these resolutions are successful. Yup, you heard it right. Statistics say that if you are resolving to lose weight, you probably won’t.
Bleak outlook, right?
Well, don’t be too surprised. I’d venture to say that these stats aren’t just exclusive to New Year’s resolutions. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that most people fail year round at their health related goals. Why? Well, there are lots of reasons. But rather than focus on the negatives, let’s turn things around a bit.
Below, I’ve composed a short list of practical ways you can increase the odds that you are successful with your health-specific resolution.
- Be realistic with your resolutions. You might not lose 100 lbs this year. Sorry. And if you have 5 kids and a full time job, you probably won’t workout 6 days a week, one hour a day (sorry Insanity). But 3 days a week, twenty five minutes a day? Realistic. make sure your goals work with your schedule.
- Set a long-term goal with shorter goals along the way. We do better when we have short, achievable goals. Think of them like steps, or small victories, towards your ultimate goal. If you stand outside of an office building, looking up, the goal of getting to the top seems insurmountable. So much so that you just might give up (and I wouldn’t blame you!). But if you walked inside and found a staircase, well, that’s doable. So consider breaking that goal into 3 month increments.
- Include a system of rewards. Did you hit your 3 month goal? Good. Now reward yourself. Go buy those new jeans. Eat that ice cream. Buy that little black dress. We can all use a little positive reinforcement.
- Keep a journal. Honestly, I’ve gone in and out with a food and exercise journal. But when I’m doing it consistently, I’m achieving better results. There’s just something about sitting down at the end of the day and seeing what I’ve put in my body. And there’s certainly like getting to the end of the week and seeing all the exercise I’ve logged. Talk about feeling accomplished. I recommend the MyFitnessPal app.
- Find someone to keep you accountable. There really is strength in numbers. So whether it’s your husband or a girlfriend looking to achieve similar goals, I recommend you find someone to join you in your fitness journey this year. There’s just something about having someone in the foxhole with you to share your successes and failures. And face it, sometimes we just need a shoulder to cry on or an ear to listen!
- Take measurements. We’re women. Our body’s do insane things. They feel different on a seemingly daily basis. By keeping measurements, we can eliminate the variables like “feeling fat.” Tip: take measurements at the same time each month–about a week after your period. That way all the bloating is over and you can get a true picture of what you’ve truly accomplished.
- Take before and after photos. Of course, everyone likes to see success. That’s why whenever I start a new program, I always take before and after photos. I go from the back, side, and front. And make sure you strip down to a swimming suit or something similar. That way you can see all those trouble areas without getting to risque.
How do you plan on keeping your resolutions? Tell us all about it in the comments!
Image courtesy Danilo Rizzuti / freedigitalphotos.net