Around this time of year, many people look at themselves and make the decision to lose weight, build muscle, and eat better. With these goals in mind, many people just hit the gym and buy healthier food at the start, thinking they can motivate themselves to a complete overhaul of their lifestyle overnight only to run into the brick wall of burnout when they don’t see the results right away. Everyone can achieve the goal of a healthier lifestyle, but it takes planning and patience. Here’s several tips to help you along your way to success.
Break your goal down into steps:
Losing weight, getting into shape and eating better is a fantastic set of goals, but stepping on a scale every time you walk into a gym can be one of the biggest de-motivators in your way, and quitting McDonalds and potato chips cold turkey for salad and snap peas can leave you grumpy and unsatisfied throughout the day. Start with baby steps. For example, set a goal of being able to jog continuously on the treadmill for a mile, do 10 pushups without taking a break, and try to lose one pound in a two-week period. Food-wise, start simple by replacing sugary juice and soda with water, drink less coffee or tea (move from five cups to three cups), and reach for a less fatty snack, such as nuts or fruits. Eventually move yourself up; run two miles, do 25 pushups, replace that hamburger and fries with a grilled chicken breast and rice. By breaking your goal down into simple, easy to follow steps, you’ll feel more progression and internal satisfaction as you move forward.
Did you go to the gym and accomplish your workout every day for a week straight? Did you resist the urge to hit the vending machines for some chips and soda when you were feeling a little tired and hungry at work? Then congratulations! Nothing will keep you motivated like giving yourself a reward whenever you hit your goals, even if they are as small and simple as your weekly goals. That doesn’t mean take a day off or ruin your diet, though. Do something like treating yourself to a movie that you’ve wanted to see, or go spend an extra day at the park with your dog!
Work together with others to accomplish similar things:
Nothing is worse than being surrounded by complete strangers in a room full of equipment you don’t have the slightest clue of its function. However, there are resources around that you can utilize to help keep you motivated and move you along. Find out if any of your friends are visiting
the gym and find times to go together, ask questions around the facility and participate in group classes if your gym offers it. When it comes to what you eat, work with your family to find meals that will keep you on your goals and keep your kids happy (make sure to reward them too if they are trying new things!). Working with others will keep you motivated and give you someone to lean on if things get difficult.
Don’t give up
The most important thing is to never give up. Redefining yourself is difficult, it can take months, sometimes even years. Progress can seem slow, but everything you are doing is working! The most important thing is to keep yourself happy and motivated, and by hitting goals and taking steps constantly, you will do both. Take progress pictures every now and then and you will be surprised how much you change throughout the year, and no matter how difficult the task, always keep the mindset of “you can do it.”
Swimming is a great low impact activity to get you in shape. Most of our SafeSplash locations offer Adult swimming lessons too! Get the family started off on the healthy foot, sign up for swim lessons today!