Resolutions are easy to make but they are not always so easy to keep. We’ve all had that moment as we have stepped onto the scales at the end of the holiday season, or tried on that favourite outfit ahead of summer when we realise that the time has come to get back in shape.
However, it’s one thing to say that you are going to get fitter and eat healthier, it’s another to stick to it when you’ve had a rough day and all you want to do is go home and slob out on the couch with a tub of ice cream.
So, what is the key to sticking to a fitness routine? How can you make sure that you aren’t taking one step back for every step forward?
Well, there is no magic solution, but setting a few ground rules and getting into some good habits can make a real difference.
Here are our tips for creating a routine that you can keep.
Make A Detailed Plan
As simple as it sounds, one of the most effective ways there is to make sure that you stick to a plan is to make sure that you have put as much work into that plan as possible.
So many fitness plans fall apart because the person creating them hasn’t thought beyond “run every day” or “Lose x stone by x date.”
Start by asking yourself what your end goal is.
Do you want to be fitter?
Do you just want to lose weight? Is simply getting into a healthy routine the most important thing?
Once you have your goal in mind, then you should start to think about what a realistic timetable would be.
Do you have enough time in your schedule to work on this every day?
If so, how much time do you have?
And if not, where can you make time?
Remember To Stay Positive And Kind To Yourself
Another of the most common reasons why people end up giving up on their fitness resolutions is that they expect immediate results and they’re disappointed when they don’t get them.
Another is that some people get so disheartened when they have a bad week and fall out of their routine that they give up entirely.
If you want to keep pushing ahead on this journey, it is so important that you stay positive.
This is a good step that you are taking, and while it is not always going to be easy, it shouldn’t be a punishment either.
Remember that there are mental health benefits to getting out there and getting some exercise, so you shouldn’t let it become something that drags you down.
Which brings us to our next point…
Get A Friend Involved
Anyone who has committed to a new fitness regime before will tell you that it is always much easier to give up when the going gets hard if it feels like it’s just you taking on this huge challenge by yourself.
Any target feels further out of reach when you’re the only one reaching for it.
So, if you’re feeling like this uphill battle is threatening to get a little bit lonely, reach out to a friend or family member and see if they would be up for joining in.
It does not have to be a massive commitment; you don’t even have to set each other the same goals.
The most important thing is that you will both be agreeing to embark on a journey to better health together.
If going for a run together every morning isn’t an option, you could download a fitness app to keep track of both of your progress.
A step like this can be hugely encouraging and motivating, and it can even bring out a little competitive edge if you find that helps you both to keep going!
Most importantly, you will have someone to talk to and encourage you if you’re having a hard day or if you find that one particular goal just seems insurmountable.
Do Your Research And Make Sure You Have The Right Tools For The Job
Hands up everyone who has bought expensive fitness equipment on a whim.
Well, if you want to avoid feeling a pang of guilt every time you pass those weights on your way to the living room, you should make sure that you are getting the equipment that will help you achieve your goal.
Don’t just get something because you feel like you should.
Do your research.
You might find that investing in a treadmill isn’t really worth it if getting out of the house is a good motivating factor for you to get some exercise.
However, buying a good pair of new running shoes definitely will be.
If you are setting out on a rigid diet plan to complement your new routine, you might want to try a meal replacement shake.
Consider these options to find one that has the taste and the supplements that you’re looking for. Shake That Weight also has blogs and guides to help you find the right fit.
Talk To A Professional
Going back to our point about unrealistic goals, it’s not just about trying to find more time for this than you will realistically have in a day.
A lot of people fall at the first hurdle because they try and push themselves too hard on the first week.
If you’ve been doing very little exercise for a long period of time (or even a short one, to be honest), then pushing yourself to breaking point right out of the gate just isn’t going to work.
With that in mind, it could well be worth heading to your local gym to talk to a fitness instructor.
A fitness instructor isn’t just there to shout motivational catchphrases at you while you lift weights.
They can help you plan a long-term fitness routine that is based around your body type, your medical history, and your schedule.
What they won’t do is expect you to be able to hit the same numbers as someone who has been working out hard every day of their lives, and they won’t knock your confidence down every time you slip up.
Once again, getting healthy doesn’t have to be a solo mission.
Try To Kick Some Of Those Bad Habits
During the pandemic, we have all been feeling the need for our creature comforts.
As things start to get a little brighter out, it’s a good time to take stock of all those bad habits that have crept back in and be honest with yourself about what you can, and what you should, cut out.
There have been a lot of reports out there about people drinking too much alcohol during 2020, and while there are many good reasons to cut down on your drinking, the empty calories are certainly up there with the best of them.
Maybe you haven’t been tempted to pick up a pack of cigarettes during the pandemic, but maybe you have started to rely a little too heavily on those sugary snacks for a pick me up.
Cold turkey is not always the best approach, so think about what you can phase out or replace with a healthy alternative
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