Author: Louise Irvine

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Friday, January 4th, 2013 at 2:05 pm
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Keep Fit Series

Having Trouble Sticking to your New Year Resolution?

Most people, at this time of year, think about making changes to their health. Whether your goal is to lose weight, become stronger or healthier it is important that you not only want to change but are really ready to make changes.

Here are some tips to help you refocus you efforts and keep your resolution for longer.

Make your goals specific and measurable.  If you are trying to lose weight, you need to know your current weight, you need to know what is a healthy weight band for your height and how long it will take to lose the weight in a healthy manner.

If your goal is to get stronger then you need to measure current 1 rep max and then work out your training percentages.

If your goal is to get faster, you need to have a running/cycling loop and a stop watch, although don’t expect to get faster every day!

Keep a diary of your progress. If you don’t have a coach, try to find a friend that you trust to help you and let them read your diary. Having someone that you are accountable to is a great motivator (and you need that to get out on these cold days) and your coach or friend will be able to encourage you.

Listen to your body at all times and don’t feel that you have to exercise according to a timetable, if your body is telling you it’s tired. Exercising when you have a virus can cause serious long-term illness.

Make short term goals and long term goals. Short term goals need to be realistic. If you set yourself a target that you will not reach in the time you have planned, you will only be disappointed and disillusioned so plan something that is an easy step towards your long term goal. Just as important is to plan into the future to ensure that when you reach your first target you can not only recognise it and reward yourself, but also have another to start on right away.

Research. Whatever your goal is, look into different ways of reaching it until you find that one that you feel is right for you. For example, not everyone likes running or cycling but swimming and aqua aerobics are  good if you are carrying too much weight, as they don’t hurt the joints. Can you only drive part of the way to work and walk the rest? Everything you do counts.

When it comes to dieting, most of the fad diet programmes out there are extreme in a few recommended foods, or else deprive the body of food altogether. This works in opposition to our metabolism and the results usually don’t last. Some people respond to cutting out treat or junk foods, others can’t cope and respond better to cutting down. Know yourself. Find a substitute, say a piece of fruit, for the chocolate or biscuits or whatever it is that is your downfall. As you begin to eat better and feel better, your craving for junk food will decrease.

As you continue towards a healthier lifestyle,  keep these tips in mind to ensure success.

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