It’s that time of the year again! Losing weight and getting in shape are the most popular resolutions made each year. Unfortunately, most resolution-makers give up before ever really getting started. Don’t let this happen to you! By applying the following tips to achieve your New Year’s weight loss goals, you will set yourself up for a successful new year!
Why do so many people give up? Most fitness resolution-makers end up quitting after a month or so because they’re making their resolutions with negative thoughts in mind. When you start a fitness journey expecting deprivation, starvation, and exhaustion, you’re setting yourself up for failure. If you think about positive aspects such as improving your overall health, feeling better, and looking better, you’re much more likely to succeed! So how can you make sure that this year will be different?
7 Tips to Achieve Your New Year’s Weight Loss Goals
1. Create S.M.A.R.T. Goals
The acronym S.M.A.R.T. stands for: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely. The fitness goals that you make should be all of these things.
First, your goals should be specific. Don’t just say you want to lose weight, but instead give yourself specific goals. If you want to lose a total of 30 pounds, give yourself 6 months. Each month’s goal can be to lose 5 pounds. This would mean your weekly goal would be to lose approximately 1.25 pounds. Setting smaller, more specific goals will make them much more achievable.
Your goals should also be measurable. This isn’t just about weight, although weighing yourself is one example. You can also set goals to run a mile in under 10 minutes. Saying that you just want to “learn to run” doesn’t give you a specific goal to aim for.
Attainable goals are extremely important. To state the obvious, if you set goals you can’t possibly attain, you’re destined to fail. Set yourself up for success and choose attainable goals, like completing your first 5k or fitting into that bikini you saw in the window of your favorite store!
You may be wondering, “What’s the difference between attainable and realistic? Aren’t they the same thing?”
They’re similar, but they’re not the same. Attainable goals are things that you can accomplish in the near future. For instance, you are totally capable of running your first marathon. While this is attainable, it may not be realistic for everyone. Training for a marathon (26.2 miles) takes up a huge portion of your time. While it is technically attainable, it may not be realistic at the current time. That’s not to say that it won’t be at a later date, though! 😉 The bottom line is, make sure you pick goals that will realistically fit with your schedule now.
Last, but not least, you need to pick goals that are timely. This goes back to choosing goals that are not too far out in the future. Trying to focus on anything more than a month ahead of time can make that goal extremely overwhelming. Take it one day at a time! You can also choose to train for a specific race or competition. Once you choose one, set up a training plan that you can follow week by week. Again, breaking it down into smaller time frames will make it feel within reach.
2. Build a Vision Board
Your vision board should be placed in an area where you can see it each day. Vision boards can include things like inspirational quotes and images, recipes or workouts to try, or anything else that empowers you to take control of your health. Keep in mind that getting in shape is not just about changing the way that you look, but also about improving the way that you feel.
3. Learn to Meal Prep
Unhealthy eating habits are the number one reason that resolutions fail. Meal prepping is invaluable when it comes to staying on track. Having healthy foods cooked-up and divided into serving sizes will help you continue to make healthy choices. There’s nothing worse than getting home after a long day and having nothing healthy to eat. This is usually when you grab something that offers no nutritional value. Opening up the refrigerator and finding a pre-cooked healthy meal will not only save you from stress, but extra calories, as well.
4. Eat Breakfast Everyday
“Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” No, really, it is! Of course we’re not telling you to eat pancakes and French toast every morning, but a nutritious breakfast packed with protein, healthy fats, and whole grains. Eating a nutritious breakfast each morning will help you make good choices all day long!
Check out these 6 Scrumptious Make-Ahead Breakfasts!
5. Assemble or Join a Support Group
Surrounding yourself with people that have similar goals can keep you motivated and on track. It doesn’t even have to be an official “support group”, it can be as simple as getting a few of your friends to join you on your fitness journey. Aside from the motivation factor, having people that understand the process (and the struggles that come with it) can be extremely helpful to getting through the rough patches. Additionally, finding a workout buddy can make you work harder and get to the gym even on the days you don’t feel like going!
6. Record Your Progress
We’re not just talking about writing down your weight, body fat, and circumference measurements each week. You can (and should) record all aspects of your journey, including but not limited to: what you ate, how your workouts went, how you’re feeling, recipes you’ve tried, any cravings you’re experiencing, new workout records you’ve set, and challenges you’ve overcome! Keeping a record of things like this can help steer you in the right direction and help you realize how far you’ve come!
7. Plan Rewards
Aside from looking and feeling healthier than ever before, another plus side to going on a fitness journey is the rewards that come with it! Often times, when we think of rewards for eating clean and working out all week, we think of cheat meals and desserts. While these kinds of rewards are okay every once in a while, you shouldn’t reward yourself with food every week. That can set you back pretty quickly.
Instead, choose things like adding money to a vacation fund, buying yourself a new bathing suit or outfit, picking up a new book or kitchen gadget, or anything else you can think of! I like to reward myself with downtime. After a long, busy, successful week, I look forward to chilling out on the couch on a Friday night with ZERO guilt!
We know that you’ve got it in you to succeed! Apply these tips to your new year’s resolution weight loss goals, and you’ll turn healthy choices into healthy habits that will last a lifetime!
Do you have any special tips you use to keep yourself on track? Did you find any of these tips especially helpful? Let us know in the comment section!