While new year's resolutions freely abound in early January, they are not always followed by reality. Everyone is full of hope at the idea of exercising or losing weight, but the willpower often isn't there. Find out how you can keep to your fitness related resolutions!
Why don't we stick to our resolutions?
Start exercising, lose weight, stop smoking ... these and many more are often heard as January 1st rolls around. In the search for good health, everyone feels ready to double down on their efforts to get back in shape. However, the reality is often a very different story. Few actually manage to achieve their fitness/sports resolutions. Why is this? On the surface, it seems that a lack of willpower is largely responsible.
But it's not that simple. Researchers have also pinpointed biology as one of the causes for our slacking off. Chemical substances secreted by the body (called endocannabinoids) activate receptors in our brain that control the neurotransmitters which are essential to feeling motivated. This is why we are not all equal when coming face to face with our willpower to follow through on our resolutions. Having said that, should we use it to excuse our laziness?
Tips on sticking to your fitness resolutions
Is there an effective method for sticking to your fitness/sports resolutions? To help you find the answer, here's some advice from Pierre, your Domyos fitness coach.
1) Set realistic goals
Why shoot for the moon? Aiming for the impossible accomplishes nothing. In fact, it's the quickest way to get discouraged. To stick to your resolutions and stay motivated, set yourself realistic goals that are based on your own physical condition. If you want to lose weight, don't expect to lose more than 2 kg a month—that's already good progress in itself! Always keep in mind that whatever your goal may be, you won't see immediate results. Work towards your goal slowly and steadily, and don't skip steps. Stay focused on the great reward that awaits you if you persevere!
2) Get a coach
To start working out again (this time for good!) it's a good idea to seek the help of professionals. At the gym, avail yourself of the advice of a fitness coach who can help you plan your fitness regime. There's nothing better than a personal fitness analysis to ask the right questions and get a rundown on your physical condition. Drawing on the help of others will give you everything you need to start working out effectively and reach your goal more quickly.
3) Pick the right fitness activities
Has exercising or sports always been a chore? Have you just never found the right activity, the one that you can perform without counting the minutes going by? To rediscover the joys of being active, start by finding out which fitness/sports activities are available in your town. This will give you a better understanding of your expectations and help you meet your goals. Try new classes alone, in a group, or outdoors (why not!), and discover what you like. Doing something you enjoy will help you stay motivated and stick to your resolutions.
4) Make time
"I don't have time" ... is that something you've been hearing yourself say? To stick to your fitness resolutions, you will have to make time — no two ways about it. As much as possible try to incorporate fitness/sports into your weekly schedule. Morning, noon or night — any time is a good time to do a fitness session. A fitness break might be just what you need to give your performance a boost for the rest of the day! Haven't you ever felt that feeling of genuine well-being after a fitness/sports session? Clearing your mind, setting aside your worries, feeling good about your body ... these things are so important.
5) Set up a training schedule
Ok, you're now ready to do sports, and you've agreed to block off time for it. Next, you need to create a training schedule to incorporate this new habit into your calendar. What's the right pace for sticking to your resolution? At least twice a week, and ideally 3 times a week, for an hour each time. And if you're short on time, or the idea of going outside in the cold scares you off, we have the perfect solution: work out in the comfort of your home! Yes, you can—with Domyos Live, a completely free service that lets you enjoy fitness classes directly from your home. Click here to try out this great new experience!
6) Think further than your goal
As often as possible, think positively about your resolutions in order to stick to them over time. Looking at things positively is vital to staying motivated. Learn to go beyond your original objective. Certainly, you are taking up sports again to reach a specific goal that you set for yourself; but don't stop telling yourself that exercise is also important to staying in shape and having good overall health. Your mindset is of utmost importance: take pleasure in what you do, without worrying about what results others are getting. Think about yourself and your own sense of well-being first and foremost. You'll find that getting the results you want will come much easier this way.
So now you know a few tips that will help you stay motivated as the year begins. So go ahead and dive in! Start by diving into reaching one of your resolutions, and imagine all the benefits that you will gain!