I’m sure you’ll agree that far too often (especially this time of year) we see posts about rapid weight loss or quick body transformations. While I too get sucked into reading these, enough time has passed that I know that these things are purely marketing tools designed to sell as many programs as possible. Perhaps it will get you quick results but more than likely do nothing for the most important part of living a healthy lifestyle. —->What goes on in your head.
It’s January!! Cue the excitement and all the #newyearnewme hashtags. While I don’t have any statistics handy, being in the fitness industry it is often a time for people to start out with huge goals and big changes. I’m honestly not sure if January would be my first choice of a start date but please wait and hear me out. Most people aren’t thriving in January. I certainly am not yet. Post holiday sugar cravings, maybe the pure sight of your credit card bills or bank account send you heading back to the couch. It’s cold, often even gloomy.
This isn’t meant to discourage you but to help you to understand why you’re probably already struggling and it’s only January 9th. Should you still start?! Yes! You can do it!
Just read this first!
Let’s start with some restructuring of your mental game. In order to achieve lasting, liveable results you need to slow things down and realize the biggest obstacle to overcome is the battle that is going on in your head.
One more time… for anyone who missed this. You will really have to accept that all of our hardest battles are being fought in your head. Progress with this is a must before you can really move forward. (Check out more about that HERE)
Next comes, changes and it is the single obstacle that will deter most people after the initial excitement of anything new has worn off. Your lifestyle will have to change in order for you to reach your goals. You are going to have to find the time for your changes and continue to make it a part of your daily, or weekly routine. You are going to have to change the way you have programmed yourself to think.
You will have to step back and accept that you will make mistakes. The people I have found to be most successful have slowly taken bits of guidance and made it work in their own lives. Only you can make the decision about what you want your life to look like. These people also know that remolding and reshaping their goals is necessary for success. Keep what’s working and get rid of what’s not. This involves a lot of missteps which usually push most people to thinking they have failed and ultimately quit. When in reality, it has opened up an opportunity for you to learn about what part of your goal is failing you.
Take a look at what you really want. It could be anything! It doesn’t even have to involve fitness. Take that goal and break it down into smaller more manageable steps. Let’s use the example of paying off a large loan. If you wanted to pay off a large loan you wouldn’t just wait for the day that you had that large sum of money magically show up in your account. You would pick a manageable amount and slowly chip away at it daily, weekly or monthly. Apply this to your health related goals! Maybe you would like to run 5km. Would you be more successful to just wait for the day and try to run 5km? Or would breaking that distance down into smaller more manageable distances work best? It sounds ridiculous, but when it comes to building a healthier lifestyle we always want to skip the training runs and jump to the race. You must build the foundation necessary to succeed.
Another great way I try to explain why I think making small changes is best is this:
I want you to take a hard look at your whole life. What kind of struggles have you had over that time. Are you 42? You have 42 years of patterns that you have developed and need to adjust. What have you resorted to in the past when you haven’t succeeded with your goals? Did you quit? Did you take a look at why you weren’t successful? Did you try again? What kind of coping mechanisms have you created when you are really struggling? How do you pull yourself out of a string of bad eating and missing your workouts? Have you given yourself enough time to really make this a lifestyle?
As a human I know we like to go all in and want our results like yesterday. I am no stranger to this. There was a time in my life that if I couldn’t do the exact workout I wanted, run the exact distance I wanted, have the exact amount of time working out that I wanted, I wouldn’t do anything at all. It took me a long time to stop my own self sabotage.
Be sure you are really ready for the change.
Small steps: Super small!
Break your goal into smaller subgoals: daily-weekly etc.
Give yourself time. Then give yourself more time.
Don’t be afraid to make mistakes.
Find what works and what doesn’t. Get rid of what doesn’t.
Ask for help.
Last do me a favour, if you are planning on starting something today or tomorrow that you have no intention of doing 5 years from now just don’t. Seriously, don’t! If you need some more help please reach out! You can message me below or on Instagram (emmaleeharrison)
Be kind to your body and emotional well-being enough to know that creating small, short term changes will lead to successful, sustainable long term goals.