When New Year rolls around, people tend to make resolutions and self-improvement promises to themselves. Fitness goals and losing weight are usually at the top of their lists. But once January and/or February pass, it is common to find motivation has waned. Some people have already moved on without coming close to reaching their goals.

Sound familiar?

This year you really want to stick with it though. So, how do you keep your fitness goals on track during 2017?

1. Schedule in a routine

Scheduling in a workout with its own dedicated block of time makes it’s easier to stay on target. If you’re able to work with being flexible and stick to it, that’s OK too, but keep in mind if you don’t promise yourself specific dedicated time to exercise you leave room for lots of “I’ll do it later”. For many people, after a few weeks the fitness enthusiasm falls to the wayside and before they know it, all goals are out the window and “later” has won. Consistency is important, so make the commitment and stick to it.

2. Set realistic goals

Setting the bar too high, especially in the beginning, tends to set people up for failure. Losing weight and getting fit takes time. Ultimately, it involves lifestyle changes and slow and steady really does win the race. To start, choose exercises you can do without injuring yourself. If you hurt yourself, not only will you feel pain (and not the good workout kind!) but you’ll set yourself back.

3. Clean out the kitchen

It’s essential that you keep those “problem” foods out of your house. Substitute the cookies, chocolates and other less diet-friendly foods with healthier options. After a short period of time, both you and your taste buds won’t miss the junk.

4. Keep track of your progress

It’s helpful to watch your progress as you meet each milestone. Pick a tracking method that appeals to you, for example:

  • An app, a calendar or a journal – this way you have fitness data to compare.

  • Take a photo of yourself once a week and contrast these to see your progress.

  • Keep a video diary – show yourself working out and getting fit and lean.

Tracking your progress can be a high motivator because as the days and weeks pass by, you have a visual to see the accomplishments you’ve made.

5. Try new workouts like suspension training

Try to find new exercises or activities. Varying your workout makes things more interesting, which will keep you engaged as you work towards your goals. For instance, have you considered suspension training? Look into different models of trainers on the market, like the newly introduced suspension trainers from aerobis for a more advanced workout. These are versatile pieces of equipment that can be used to vary your routine up. You can also train several muscle groups at the same time, not to mention it’s extremely portable. As long as you have a sturdy base, you are never far away from your workout.

6. Partner up with other people

Try partnering up with other people who are dedicated to reaching their own fitness goals. Working out with someone else passes the time more quickly and keeps things fun. If you prefer to exercise alone, choose someone you can talk to during those times you feel you want to give up and need encouragement; a person you can contact in moments of weakness if needed.

Or, simply post your goals on social media. If you are planning a specific workout in the morning, tell everyone. People may respond with inspiring comments or ask you how you did. Either way, by putting it out in cyberspace, you’ve increased the accountability factor. Chances are you’ll follow through.

7. Reward yourself

Think of ways to reward yourself that will encourage you to keep going. First, set the goal (i.e. losing 15 pounds, beating your running record or working up to a specified level of workout) and then work towards it. A reward shouldn’t mean a plan to binge eat after you’ve lost those pounds or to go out and max your credit card. Think of something inspiring and fun. Maybe a weekend trip, a spa visit or some new clothes.

Getting started is often easy, but keeping on track is another thing entirely. However, by structuring your fitness goals in a way that makes them achievable, before you know it you’ll be setting your goals for 2018.

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One Comment

  1. Holly Martin says:

    Amazing post Katie! Although I agree with all the tips that you shared, I believe being regular, consistent and rewarding yourself for every small/large milestone will help you stay motivated and achieve your fitness goals. Thanks a lot for sharing this 🙂

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