I’ve been in the Fitness Industry for 16 New Years. That is 16 Januarys where the masses come back to the gym with gusto, determination, and resolutions. And of course the statements that come along with feeling newly rejuvenated; “This is my year. I’m losing 10 pounds. I’m never eating sugar again.” We’ve all made them, written them down, shared them with a friend, and then put on our sneakers and head to our cardio class. Unfortunately, along with a packed gym every January it is quickly followed by empty equipment come February.
According to University of Scranton’s Journal of Clinical Psychology, the number one resolution for 2014 is to lose weight. 45% of Americans make resolutions, but only 8% actually succeed in accomplishing them. Here is the silver lining, people who do make resolutions are 10 times more likely to reach their goal than those who don’t make any. Grab your journal and your pen for SunshineFIT’s six ways to succeed at your 2014 resolutions!
1. Never say never. Stopping something cold turkey is HARD! The minute we can’t have it, we want it. Instead of saying “I will never have sugar again.” Start with reducing your sugar intake by setting a goal each day or each week to reduce your intake. Examples: Stop adding sugar to your coffee or tea. When the afternoon sweet tooth kicks in, be prepared with fruit instead of heading to the vending machine. Instead of ice cream for dessert have yogurt with honey. Go through your cabinets and fridge and toss anything that has sugar listed as one of the first 3 ingredients (while your there, toss anything that has more than 5 ingredients, period.) Taking baby steps will make you feel like you are accomplishing your goal.
2. Track it, Track it, and Track it. I’ve always been an advocate for calorie and exercise tracking. At the end of the day what matters most is calories in, calories out. If you want to lose weight you need to expend more calories then you consume. That’s the secret to weight loss. Pretty basic isn’t it? So much easier said than done. Which is why you should know the amount of calories you are putting into your mouth and the amount of calories you are sweating out every day. There are literally thousands of apps and websites to do this now. My favorite is MyFitnessPal and most recently the Jawbone UP band. Weight Watchers is another great place to go to track and also have an online support community. Find what works for you and do it everyday.
3. Make yourself accountable. Writing your resolutions is easy, actually COMPLETING them is where I want you to be successful. Something as simple as writing your workouts in for the week or the month and checking it off once it’s complete can be very satisfying. Need something a little more specific? Grab a friend and set goals together, each week celebrate your achievements with a movie out (hold the butter) or taking a class together. Put post-its on your bathroom mirror and tear them off as you reach each resolution. Hire a professional. Personal Trainers are here to help and we WANT to help. It is our passion in life to help you reach your goals, utilize us.
4. Be SMART. “I will lose 10 pounds” is a very broad statement. SMART goals are SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ATTAINABLE, RELEVANT and TIME FRAMED. How will you track your weight loss? Is your goal date realistic? When losing weight plan for 1-2 pounds per week. . How will you lose 10 pounds? When will you lose 10 pounds by?
5. Group Exercise. Just this morning the Today Show reported on the popularity of boutique studios. Boutique studios usually offer a specific type of class or mix of classes. Pilates ProWorks (of course I had to give it the plug!) offers Pilates, Barre, and TRX. I believe the popularity of these studios is because group exercise offers more benefits than getting on an Elliptical and staring at a television for 60 minutes. Your instructor will get to know you and you will get to know them. When you are gone for a full week, we notice. When you tell us about your birthday plans, your family vacation, your promotion, we listen. Making a connection with the Instructor will boost your attendance and make you feel like a person, not just a face in the crowd. Group exercise offers consistency. Most Group Exercise schedules stay the same week to week so you can count on your Pilates Pro class every Tuesday at 9am with your favorite instructor. Group exercise keeps it interesting. A common reason we stop getting on an elliptical every day is because we are bored as hell. Group exercise offers variety from class to class to keep you interested and to continue to deliver results.
6. “When you fall on your face you are still moving forward.” You are only human. You will have a day that Skittles will win the war over strawberries. There will be days when happy hour is so much more exciting than 45 minutes of Spinning. We all have them. It’s okay to give in and indulge. Just don’t do it everyday. Have your Skittles; make sure you enjoy every bite! Then the next day go right back to those strawberries. You’re still moving forward.
Happy New Year!!!
In Health and with Grace,