Whether you're a fitness newbie or not, sticking to your fitness goals is never an easy feat. I've been an athlete my entire life and started my 'fitness journey' just over two years ago and to this day I still struggle with it. But, there are many things you can do to greater your chances for success. Here are my top '5 Tips for Sticking to Your Fitness Goals.'
- Find a routine YOU enjoy: I like to lift weights. I also like doing cardio and yoga on a regular basis. However, you may not! And, you know what, that is okay! Try it all. I've tried OrangeTheory Fitness, PureBarre, The Bar Method, and CrossFit. And, you should too! Many gyms, even fitness boutiques offer free classes before you buy. If you don't like it, don't do it. In the long run, you won't stick to your goal if you aren't enjoying the exercise you're doing.
- Set attainable goals: If your long term goal is to lose 20lbs, break it up into smaller goals. Perhaps 5lbs at a time. Attaining smaller goals will give you motivation and confidence to keep at it. Don't make your 'mountain' impossible to climb by over reaching. You will have a better chance at sticking to your goals if they are attainable more than you will if they are far fetched. It is smart to have a long term or overall goal, but try not to set yourself up for failure by making that your only vision. And, always remember to celebrate success, even the little victories.
- You can't outrun your fork: Know that fitness is 20% exercise and 80% nutrition. Achievement in the gym is supplemented by proper nutrition. You don't have to count calories if you don't want to. Plan ahead by meal prepping for the week. You don't have to eat just chicken and spinach, or tilapia and asparagus. Make meals you will enjoy. Also, you can keep healthy snacks at your desk, in your car, or even your purse in case you get hungry. Instead of reaching for a brownie at work when the 3:00PM hunger strikes or sugar craving hits, you can be relieved because you have almonds, or a protein bar in your desk drawer, helping you stick to your goals.
- Stop making excuses: Fitness isn't easy. Making better eating choices or gym habits is not going to be easy. But, the more you make excuses, the harder it's going to be and the longer it will take to see progress. Let's be real. You're not always going to wake up early to go to the gym or pass up the afternoon brownie for a protein shake or banana. Continuing to make excuses for why you slept in or needed the extra sweet treat is just an excuses. Excuses do not attain goals. Think of your workouts as important meetings you've scheduled with yourself. Bosses don't cancel.
- Don't give up: Like I said, fitness isn't easy. Even if you quit making excuses, you're going to hit road blocks. You may not always see progress. It may take you longer to reach a goal, or multiple attempts. Giving up, however, is the ONLY way to fail. If you keep trying, you will succeed. I promise you that.