New Years: A time for deciding on what you're going to do differently over the next 365 days. Whether you're trying to lose weight, gain weight, tone up, change your eating habits, or just improve your overall health, it's not going to be a simple, easy task. There are going to be days where you lose focus, and days where the will just isn't going to be there - Luckily, we've got a few tips for you to keep in mind when those times arise.
Set Realistic Goals
Be realistic in the health goals you are setting for yourself. Many people set a goal without putting much thought into how they're going to do it. If you set a goal that is way out of reach - such as losing 30 lbs. in only a month - you are not only going to set yourself up for failure, but you will become discouraged once you realize how unattainable it may actually be. Not to mention, gyms can get pricey and supplementing a healthy diet isn't necessarily the cheapest option at the grocery store, so many people may find their health resolution is financially unrealistic for them.
Instead of thinking about what you should be doing, think of what you could be doing. Step back for a moment and look at what you can change in your life to make your weight or health goal attainable for YOU. Could you be spending 30 more minutes at the gym each day? Maybe you can vow to swap out the ice cream or chips for fruit and yogurt from now on when you grocery shop each week in this new year, so your new diet won't hurt your wallet too much. Start to figure out what changes work best for your lifestyle and how you are going to fit them into your day-to-day life this year.
Another Important Note To Remember: Every body is different. What is a realistic weight or body goal for one person may be totally out of the question for another. People come in all shapes and sizes and it's important to remember that becoming stick-skinny, curvy, or "ripped" like a body builder is not a realistic goal, because not everyone has a build that can achieve these looks. No matter what your build is, love your body by exercising regularly and eating right, and your body will love you back by performing its best.
Trust The Process
All good things take time. Don't lose hope in working towards your goal just because you haven't noticed any difference in your health or any visible progress when you look in the mirror. Losing weight doesn't happen overnight (no matter how much we wish it did), so keep your head up, stay motivated, and keep doing what you're doing! If you stick to your workout routine or diet now, you will be thanking yourself later when the results do start showing.
Taking Time To Rest Is Just As Important As Staying Active
It's important that you do not overwork yourself. If you're trying to lose weight or gain muscle - don't overdue it. Daily cardiovascular exercise daily is excellent - but if you find that you're becoming exhausted from it, it might be a good idea to take it easy and allow yourself one day a week to skip out on a high-intensity workout and go for a light jog or walk instead. Taking a rest day is especially important if you're implementing weights into your workout routine. When weight training, make sure to only do so every other day. A day of rest in-between training days ensures that our muscles have the time they need to recuperate so that they may become bigger and stronger.
Remember Why You Started
Hitting a point of discouragement or frustration is inevitable when you're trying to get in shape. Exercise may be time-consuming or physically challenging, but if you remind yourself WHY you are doing it, it may become a bit more bearable. Do you want to improve how you feel every day? Do you want to tone up, slim down, or fill out your figure a bit more? Ask yourself why you decided to make 2017 a healthier year. Providing yourself with a concrete reminder might be a big help for the times where you feel like giving up on your resolution. For example, go ahead and buy a shirt or a bathing suit you love, but that fits a bit snug. Keep it hanging in your closet as a reminder of what you're working towards, but keep in mind that every goal comes with some sort of challenge along the way. Stay motivated, be persistent, and don't lose sight of your goal, because nothing is going to be more satisfying than the day you try that bathing suit on again and it isn't as tight as it once was!