Fit To The Core Blog
Welcome to Fit to the Core’s “Everything you ever wanted to know about fitness” blog. Everyday people are bombarded with conflicting health and fitness messages by the media. It can be overwhelming. I hope to clear up some of those conflicting messages by sharing what I have learned over the years and what I am still learning. The fitness industry is a young industry that is constantly changing and evolving. Let me clear up some of the confusion.
Have you thought about how you’re going to stay motivated to stick to your New Years Resolution fitness goals for 2012? I’m sure you truly want to follow through with those goals. If that is true then why can’t you stick with it?
Could it be that it’s just not as high on your priority list as other things in your life? Could it be that you over commit your time to others? Or maybe your spouse isn’t supportive enough. There are many reasons that can get in the way. But with proper planning and realistic goals it is possible to get there.
What is important to understand is that intentions are not enough. To stick with your resolution you must spend some time examining why you have failed in the past. Otherwise, you are doomed to failure again this year. Part of setting exercise goals is determining what’s going to get in the way. What has tripped you up in the past? You must then decide what you can do to overcome those obstacles. You need a strategy. I have a client that can easily talk herself out of showing up for her training sessions. When she is especially stressed at work or in life she just wants to go home. We agreed that she should still show up even if we just talk about it. After we talk she can choose to go home or stay and workout. Usually after these discussions (and sometimes shedding a few tears) we spend the rest of her session doing deep breathing exercises and lots of stretching. She always feels better afterwards and feels good about having the willpower to follow through. Find your own solutions to help keep yourself on track.
Something else to consider--are you setting SMART goals? You can’t just have an intention. You must determine how you will get there and how you will know you are successful. SMART stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic/Relevant, and Time Anchored. You need to get as specific as possible! Pay special attention to being realistic in your goal-setting. In an ideal world you may want to exercise six days a week but you may realistically only have two or three days available to do so. Determine a realistic exercise schedule that you can stick to. Don’t set yourself up for failure by having too lofty of a goal. For more direction on goal setting refer to my article, Get SMART: Setting Your Exercise Goals.
Lastly, some people feel as though they must not have the same willpower as others as a reason for failing to reach their goals. As this may be true, you must consider that willpower is like muscle. If you don’t use it—you lose it! It has actually been shown that the more you are successful at having the willpower to follow through on your intentions, the stronger your willpower becomes. This is another reason to keep your goals realistic. Take baby steps if you have to. The more successes you have the stronger your willpower will become. However, willpower comes from energy in our brain. It can get fatigued from too much use, the same as muscle does, and we can run out out of energy to resist our urges. One way to conserve this energy is to not tempt ourselves by keeping foods in the house that will sabotage our fitness efforts. I suggest you clean out the cupboards and fill them with foods that will support your efforts and keep your willpower strong.
Don’t underestimate yourself! If you set truly realistic fitness goals, with sound solutions to overcoming your obstacles, get the proper support, and exercise your willpower on a regular basis, you can find success this year. I wish you all the luck!
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