I’m going to be a bit controversial here … New Year’s resolutions rarely work.
Too often people think that a time of the year is going to be the reason they change. They believe that the peak of motivation that comes with the start of a new year will be the reason they get in shape and that things are going to be different this time around. I’m not saying your resolution absolutely won’t work, but the key to success is not a date on a calendar, but having a proper plan.
So here we are, in the middle of our cold, miserable Melbourne winter, and I’m talking about resolutions. Why? Chances are you’ve had a New Year’s resolution that has fallen flat on its face. If you did, that’s OK, because the reality is you can start a new you at any time.
Whatever time of year you decide to start, it’s important to choose a program that is right for you and to set short- and long-term goals that create long-lasting, healthy habits.
Want more? Check out Sam’s online program: 28bysamwood.com
1. SET YOURSELF A 28-DAY GOAL
No more, no less. Be specific, make it measurable.
2. SET SOME KEY RULES FOR NUTRITION
These rules don’t have to be rigid, all-or-nothing deal breakers that make it hard to stick to your guns. They could simply involve increasing your water intake, cutting down on caffeine, drinking less alcohol or resisting the office biscuit tin at 3pm.
3. SET SOME KEY RULES FOR TRAINING
The best advice I give to all my clients is to commit to doing something active every day for 28 days. This doesn’t mean you need to train like an Olympian or sweat like a maniac Monday through to Sunday. Your daily movement could involve yoga, a bike ride, walking the dog, getting active with the family or swimming a couple of laps at the local pool.
4. A HEALTHY MIND IS AS IMPORTANT AS A HEALTHY BODY
You don’t have to retreat to the mountains and chant for hours but you do have to set aside some time for mindfulness. This could involve journal-writing, spending five minutes focusing on your breath to wind down before bed or dedicating some time to goal setting. If you get your mind in the right place, your body will follow.
5. MAKE YOURSELF ACCOUNTABLE
Tell people what you are going to do and how you’re going to do it. Studies have shown that when we tell people what we are setting out to achieve, we are far more likely to achieve it. Make sure you tell someone who will call you on your BS and who cares about you enough to keep you on track.
6. MAKE THIS AN INTERNAL JOURNEY
Once you let others know what you are doing, make this an internal journey where you don’t let outside influences derail you. When we control the controllable and don’t let things out of our control sabotage us, we succeed.
7. A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE DOES NOT HAVE A FINISH LINE
When you reach day 28, take a deep breath and reflect on your progress. See where you have succeeded and where there are improvements to be made. Then set yourself a new 28-day block and a new 28-day goal. Take this opportunity to challenge yourself and build on the progress you have made.
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