The Anatomy of a Solid Resolution

Year after year, so many people kick off the New Year with great goals and great intentions. They write them down and call them their New Year’s resolutions.

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But often is the case, those resolutions are thrown to the wayside by usually no later than the end of February.

Why is this? We hit the ground running, full steam ahead…and then old habits start to creep in and get the best of us. Old habits do die hard, you know. How can you stop this from happening to you? Well, there’s really no wrong or right answer to that one because in the end, that all depends on you. But here are some tips I have for making resolutions that you can see through…

1. Know WHY. – Don’t just make a vague resolution, i.e. “lose weight”, “stop eating fast food”, etc. Your why should be important to you. It should even draw out an emotion – guilt, sadness, even anger. Here are some examples:

  • I want to lose weight so I can look better in my clothes
  • I want to get in shape to be a good example for my kids.
  • I want to lose weight to regain my self-confidence.

2. Be SPECIFIC. – If you are making a goal, you need to know what the goal actually is. How much weight do you want to lose – 5, 10, 15? Do you want to get down to a certain dress size? Do you want to run your first 5K or 10K – do you have a specific race in mind? Also put deadlines on these specific goals. But the key is to be realistic, i.e. it’s best only to expect to lose 1-2 lbs per week. Anything more than that is not maintainable, nor is it healthy for the body.

3. Create a PLAN. – Find a specific workout program {if you are working out at home}. Jot down a workout routine for the gym each week {usually switching between main muscle groups each day}/ Will you sign up for classes? Will you run outdoors? Also find out your optimal time to workout and stick to it…write it in the planner and make it as important as any other date you would have. Also plan out your meals…before you grocery shop.

4. Track your PROGRESS. – I am a big journal junkie. I think it’s because I love to write things out so I can see them before me…but I do think it helps to have a frame of reference when you are analyzing your goals and how far you’ve come…or whether you’re doing enough to stay on track with that goal. A fitness journal keeps you accountable for your exercise each day and a food journal is a great tool to use to go back to if you didn’t lose the weight you wanted…it’s easy to see where small changes can be made.

5. WRITE down your goals. – And keep them where you can see them. A bathroom or dresser mirror is a perfect location.

6. SHARE your goals with family and friends. – Ask for their support on your journey. Maybe someone will want to buddy up with you. Nonetheless, letting people know your plans is a great way to be held accountable. Even if they weren’t holding me accountable, I’d certainly mentally believe they were and that would be enough to keep me on track. We as humans tend not to like to fail publicly, much less at all.

OK, now get to writing those resolutions. I will be back here with my list {just the fitness-oriented ones} tomorrow.

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