There are many reasons why people fail at reaching their New Year's Resolutions and they find the same obstacles repeating themselves year after year. This article is designed to help you get off this roller coaster and set you on a path to finally achieving your health and fitness goals.
I am going to name three of the many reasons why people find themselves in the same physical condition, and many times worse, after the have decided to change the state of their health and fitness, and then I will give you the solution to each:
PROBLEM: Lack of Motivation
Lack of motivation is clearly a killer to following through with your New Year's Resolutions. But in order to start a New Year's Resolution, you must be somewhat motivated. Some of the motives for health and fitness goals are the following:
- The Doctor's report left you dissatisfied
- You don't like what you see in the mirror
- Your body aches for no apparent reason
- It's hard to keep up with your kids
- The Doctor said you would lose a little weight and become healthier, you could stop the medications
What most people do is they set their New Year's Goals and they are motivated by their poor condition. They decide to purchase a gym membership, the same way they have done in the past. But their motivation only lasts for a couple of months because they have become weary and tired of robbing Peter to pay Paul with the limited amount of time they have, the lack of will-power, and the lack of discipline.
What you see is they began with motivation, but without a successful plan for the future it led them right back to where they started. They didn't look into the future and set a one-year, five-year, or ten-year goal so their health and fitness will continue to decline each year.
SOLUTION: Lack of Motivation
The way to overcome this Motivation problem is not an easy one. Here are a couple of suggestions:
#1 -- You must be in integrity with yourself and move from making a decision to making a commitment. The difference between the two is --
- A decision can be changed, you can always decide something else.
- A commitment is final, once you have committed the decision has been taken out. This commitment must be treated as if your life depends on it because many times it does.
#2 -- Tell someone your goals who you trust, respect, and can be accountable to. This person cannot be your cheerleader who will help you make excuses for poor decisions.
#3 -- Write it down, make a plan, and follow through.
PROBLEM: Setting unrealistic goals
Another major reason people get derailed from following through on their New Year’s fitness resolutions is because they set unrealistic goals.
It is important to make sure that the goal you have set is something you are capable of doing and is beneficial to your lifestyle. You don't want to set a goal of being a professional athlete if you don't have the time, experience, desire, or ability.
There is a cliché that I think is very destructive to any worthwhile goal and it is -- "Shoot for the stars, and you might reach the moon." If you live by this cliché you are being set up for failure. If the goal is the stars anything less is not reaching your goal.
SOLUTION: Setting Unrealistic Goals
In order to set a reasonable goal, it's important to first take time to analyze the entire circumstance and come up with a solution.
Part of the process is answering these questions:
- How is this going to affect my lifestyle?
- Will my spouse support me?
- How is this going go affect my family, my health, and my job?
- How will this affect me financially?
- How will this affect my happiness and well-being?
- How is this going to affect my sleep pattern?
- Is it worth it?
- Who else has to be involved?
- Do I need a trainer or a fitness program?
After these questions have been analyzed and answered you will establish goals you can accomplish and that fit into your lifestyle. Once the goals have been set, it's necessary to have a comprehensive plan put in place and a team that will support and encourage you. The team can consist of two or more people in many different combinations such as -- spouse, trainer, workout partner, kids, nutritionist, accountability partner, doctor, best friend, sibling, or mentor.
Procrastination is one of the most dangerous hindrances to reaching your goals, because of its nature and the effects. My personal definition for Procrastination is giving yourself a reason to put off what you should be doing now until a later time and feeling good about it, not realizing that this same thought process only comes back to repeat itself time and time again. In short, Procrastination is an excuse that makes you feel good about not doing what you should.
Physiologically what takes place in the body when you come up with a solution or an excuse for a problem, endorphins are released that mimic the completion in your mind of what you are procrastinating about, and it gives you a sense of already completing the task. Once a task is completed a sign of relief takes place, and once the hormones are released many get the feeling of not having to go any further, so they stop even though nothing has actually been completed.
Procrastination is one of the hardest hindrances to deal with because it's an addictive thought process just like a drug or an alcohol addiction, and it can affect all areas of your life. If you can discipline yourself in this one area, you have the ability to reverse any area that this hindrance affects. I am going to give you a few of the solutions I have used with my procrastinating Life Coaching clients:
- Workout first thing in the morning when you have the maximum amount of control of your day. As the day proceeds things become more difficult to predict and things come up -- spouse, kids, traffic, jobs, weather, etc.
- Put your workout clothes and shoes on the side of your bed to help take the decision out of the first thing you are going to accomplish.
- Let your spouse know you have committed to working out and to encourage you to get up. If you are not married have an accountability partner, coach, or trainer help you in this area by calling 5 minutes after you alarm clock should have gone off.
- Set an appointment with a workout partner.
The real key to overcoming Procrastination is by admitting that this is an addiction that you must conquer and not appease. You need to make some absolute commitments and timelines and stick with them. If you struggle with procrastinating, I want to encourage you that you can overcome it.
Keep these solutions in mind; they will go a long way toward helping you accomplish your New Year’s fitness resolutions. For more great fitness tips, feel free to check out the rest of the blog at RonWilliamsFitness.com, and also the Ron Williams channel on YouTube!