I was filling my water bottle at the gym the other day when a gentleman posed the question. No introduction, nothing else what said. Replying with a polite, “No, I’m a personal trainer here.” He went on, “Oh, so you know what I mean. All those new people taking up the equipment. Since I’ve never seen you, I had to ask.” I half-heartedly laughed and moved on to my workout.
This short interaction got me thinking. What if I was a “resolutioner” as he assumed I was? How would I feel? Coming to the gym to keep my New Year’s resolution and here is someone, clearly judgmental and unaccepting. I don’t think I would want to continue to come back; I wouldn’t feel accepted in this new environment.
After this realization, I was annoyed. Who was he to assume that everyone he hasn’t met is a “resolutioner”? What if I was just new to the gym? What if I was coming back from an injury? Furthermore, why does being a “resolutioner” have such a negative stereotype?
Yes, it’s a fact that many people who set resolutions tend to let life get in the way after about a month and a half or so. How do you change that? How do you become the exception to the stereotype?
Set smaller goals. When you set your resolution as “I’m going to lose 50 lbs”, it becomes a long term goal and therefore more difficult to focus on and compete the steps to get there. However, when you get “I’m going to lose 1lb per week” it becomes much more doable. Just 1 lb. Of course, it’s hard work, but would you rather start at number 1 or 50 when you’re counting down to 0? Take your resolution and break it down.
Expect setbacks. No journey, especially a fitness one, is going to be a straight line. It’s not going to be easy. Especially if you’re new to exercising, there’s going to be a period of learning how hard you can push your body and how much you need to recover. At this point, if you haven’t been recovering fully, you may be feeling more tired and lethargic. Be sure you’re getting enough sleep and drinking enough water in between your workouts.
Don’t start at 200%. If you’re only going about 75% with your fitness routine, don’t hit the ground in the new year and expect to kick it up to 200%. Start with a smaller jump. If your 75% is 3, 45 min workouts a week, kick it up to 3 times for an hour. Then 4 times: 3 for an hour and 1 for 30 minutes. There’s no rule that says you absolutely must workout 6 days a week. If you started at 200%, maybe take it back to 100% or 125%.
Mix it up! If you’re bored of your routine, change it! Just like there’s no rule that you have to workout 6 days a week, there’s no rule that says your 3 days per week have to be Monday, Wednesday and Friday. If your schedule allows, change it up. Check out that spinning class on a Tuesday or the Bootcamp on Saturday morning. Who knows who you’ll meet in class?
Resolutions don’t have to start on January 1 of the new year. Set your resolution today. Has life gotten in the way for you? Are to progressing with your “New Year’s Resolution” and need a new goal to keep the motivation going? Start today. Start on March 5, 2017.
My hope is that every single person that makes a resolution or sets a goal keeps it, regardless of what it may be for you. If it’s fitness related, keep taking up that equipment. Change what being a “resolutioner” is and meet every goal you have set for the new year. You aren’t a “resolutioner”. You’re a person who made the choice to begin living a healthier lifestyle.