If you want 2017 to be the year you finally make those resolutions your reality, then DON’T make these mistakes.
If you’re reading this issue of Muscle Media Magazine, then I can draw two likely conclusions about you. Either you already live a healthy lifestyle or you want to start now. Since you’re reading this particular article, my guess would be the latter. You might be someone who has made New Year Resolutions that involve getting in the best shape of your life. What better source of media to get quality information from than Muscle Media, right? However, if you’re already in great shape and committed to fitness, I hope you keep reading anyway. You might know someone who is starting their own fitness journey. You can share this info to help that person be successful.
There are many great resources out there that share tips and tricks that will help you finally achieve those resolutions that have been set year after year after year. But, how many do you see that talk about what you should not do? The reason so many people fail with their resolutions is because they make one or all of these mistakes. They don’t even realize that they are mistakes. So, if you’re someone that is a beginner to this wonderful cause we know as fitness, then this info is just for you.
By: Roger Lockridge
Mistake #1 – Not Being Specific
You’re out with your family or friends and are getting ready to do the big countdown, and one of them inevitably asks the question, “what’s your New Year Resolution?” At least one of you say that you’re either going to lose weight or get in shape. That answer sounded great to you in the moment but as soon as they came out of your lips you made your first mistake. You might be wondering why. The answer is too vague. Technically you could lose a half of a pound and be successful and, as the joke goes on the popular memes out there, round is a shape.
You wouldn’t travel without knowing where you wanted to go. So, why would you make a resolution without setting a specific goal? If you’re going to be successful this year, you should clearly define what success means to you. The good news is that you get to make that decision. If you feel success would be to lose 20 pounds of fat, or fit in the same size pants you did in high school, then that should be your goal. If you’re someone who is skinny and looking to grow, then decide what you feel would be a good weight. Is it 15 extra pounds of muscle? 20? Think about that for a moment and decide if it is what you truly want. Then you can make your choices about how you can get there.
Mistake #2 – Going Too Big
Now that you understand part of achieving success is defining what success is to you, it’s time to cover another mistake. As people who commit to fit, we should always think and “go big” …within reason. Setting a goal that is too lofty and difficult for you to achieve is only setting yourself up for failure. This can lead to greater issues in the future. For example, if you can’t walk around your block without getting short of breath, then the chances of you running a 26.2-mile marathon are slim. If you’re someone who wants to get into powerlifting but have no experience with weight training, then it’s doubtful you’ll set a world record. Going too big and failing has been the downfall of many who tried to get in shape.
That doesn’t mean it won’t happen for you eventually (and notice I didn’t use the word “impossible”). But, if you do want those goals to happen someday, then you need to set yourself up for success. It starts with setting goals that are worthwhile but achievable. If running is what you want to do but struggle to make it past your driveway, then start by setting a goal to complete a modest 5K. That is a challenge, but something that can be accomplished. Perhaps you saw the CrossFit Games on TV and want to participate in a CrossFit event someday. Join a local CrossFit gym. Ask the coaches to help you set a goal to compete in a local event within six months. Once you achieve that goal, you can gauge what would be greater challenges and keep moving forward.
Mistake #3 – Waiting Until Monday
The ball drops, everyone celebrates, then goes home and crashes. That next day, they wake up and think about those resolutions for a minute. They can’t work out because the gym is closed on New Year’s Day (a rant which I will avoid for now), they have left overs in the fridge that shouldn’t be wasted, and it was a long night. So, the decision is made that the resolutions can wait until Monday (because it’s a new week and a fresh start!)
The mistake here is that you focus on what you can’t do or what is holding you back. So, you put it off, giving you time to forget about it. You didn’t think for a minute about what you CAN do to start on those resolutions. You can go for a walk or run to start that exercise program. You can go grocery shopping and buy heathier foods that you can prepare. You can start focusing on your flexibility by stretching at home. There are so many things that you can do on Day 1 to prepare for success. Think and act on these now. Your resolutions will be off to a more positive start. When you can get to the gym and train or stock up on your supplements, you’ll be more confident and on your way to reaching those goals.
Mistake #4 – Not Being a Student of the Game
If you’re about to enter a new endeavor, then it makes sense that you learn more about what it takes to succeed. You wouldn’t want to start a new job without some form of training. If you’re a gamer and bought a new game, you would want to check out a guide or online forum to prepare yourself for the challenge. So why don’t you learn more about what it takes for you to achieve your fitness goals?
Fortunately, you’re reading MMM. You’re avoiding this mistake from the start, but don’t stop here. There are past issues you can check out. There are other resources you can find to learn more about the best exercises or great recipes so you can enjoy your healthy commitment. If you’re investing in supplements, study the ingredients and read customer reviews about them before you stock up. All forms of education can help you now and in the long term so when you face an issue during your program, you’ll be better prepared to adapt and move forward.
Mistake #5 – Not Controlling Your Environment
If you’re someone who’s trying to lose weight and eat healthy, how successful do you think you would be if you placed yourself in the middle of a buffet restaurant every day?
You might be able to stick to salads and proteins the first day or two, but eventually temptation would likely take over. You would probably eat a lot of something that won’t help your cause. If your fridge is full of snacks and quick-fix foods that you can nuke in the microwave, this is a similar situation. You need to prepare yourself for success by surrounding yourself with what you need. Healthy foods, bottled water, your supplements, and an organized kitchen will go a long way in helping you maintain that discipline.
What if you’re in the car and held up in traffic? Man, those restaurants would be convenient and fast. You could pull right over, hit the drive-thru, and be on your way. Unfortunately, many of those places aren’t going to have healthy choices for you to consider. Keep a cooler in your car with water and pre-made meals or protein bars so you can stay on point until you make it home. You can also buy some home fitness equipment like bands and a rope for those days you weren’t able to make it to the gym. Preparing yourself in your most common environments will go a long way for you later this year and every year after.
Mistake #6 –No Support Group
Do you know someone who had a problem with alcohol or drugs and worked to overcome the addiction? If so, and you ask that person what it took to finally overcome it, one of that person’s first answers will likely be the help of family, friends, and a support group. While I don’t want to compare the troubles of addiction to someone starting fitness. But, for that person to succeed, it took being surrounded by like-minded people that care.
If you’re going to start working to lose 20 pounds, you don’t need reminded that you love pizza and beers on Friday night, or that you’ve tried before and failed. You need to know that you can do it. You need to be reminded that you planned on running for 20 minutes on the treadmill after work.
You need to be reminded that you are going to meet your training partner for chest day. Make sure you have a core group of people that will be in your corner to support you. Make sure that your social media feed is positive and uplifting. Noone likes to see post after post about drama and how bad certain people are. Your state of mind will stay positive and will serve you well on days you might struggle to stay focused.
Mistake #7 – Not Committing Enough
It’s time for some straight talk. How bad do you want this? Were those resolutions just a part of a conversation or did they actually mean something to you? Are you really getting tired of having to buy a new belt for the wrong reasons? Were you trying to be funny when you said you were going to run a 5K in a few months? How badly do you want to do those things you said?
The time has come to not make another resolution but to make a decision. Is 2017 going to be THE year that you get it done? Will this year really be different? Do you really want to show up with that same group of friends and celebrate a year that you actually did what you said you were going to do? Don’t resolve to be fit, commit to it. Don’t just talk about it, act on it. Don’t find the excuse to not make it to the gym. Change your schedule and find a way to get that workout in. The biggest downfall of many who resolved to get in shape is that after the first obstacle, they simply threw in the towel and gave up. Don’t be that person. Commit, right now, that 2017 will be your year of success. As soon as you commit, get to work on making it happen. On December 31, 2017 when you get asked about your New Year Resolutions, be prepared to give brand new answers because your resolutions this year became realities!