Fitmark Ambassador William Lockley talks about sticking to your fitness goals
With the New Year upon us, everyone is ready to take another shot at those resolutions. One repetitive trend most gym-goers will find is a suddenly packed gym the first couple weeks of January only to be barren by February.
Why is this trend one we see every year without fail? And why do people decide to wait until January 1st to take their health seriously only to lose that fire midway through just a month?
The answer is rather simple – we choose ease over effort the majority of the time. It’s easier to quit than fight through something hard. We chose to wait until the 1st of the year to take on every task we think will “change our lives” and then we soon become overwhelmed with the massive undertaking.
How do we break this trend?
Well, a great way to start is with a simple militaristic strategy – Divide and Conquer.
Oftentimes we want it all and all at once. The truth is, multi-tasking is actually a very inefficient way of accomplishing tasks. How can you complete a task wholeheartedly when your attention is only partially on the work? You can’t! Sure, you can get the job done, but did you really give it 100%?
If you’re honest with yourself, the answer is no. If that’s the case, how can you honestly expect to start a new workout program, travel the world and become more organized all within the first month of the year without becoming slightly discouraged? The solution to this problem is to divide and conquer.
What does that mean?
To divide and conquer, you should divide your resolutions up into singular acts and focus all your attention on forming a new habit within that particular act. For example, going to the gym, buying the trendiest gym clothes, the latest shoes and the most high-tech water filtration bottle does as much for you as buying a new car that you never drive. It costs a lot but with very little to show besides being fitted out with the latest gear.
To create a new habit, pick a small task (divide) like waking up at 7 a.m. every day and maintain consistency by doing it every day. Once you’ve created a consistent pattern, make a new goal like eating breakfast every day and so on. Once you’ve formed new habits (conquer), your end goal of becoming more fit is a lot less overwhelming than when you first started.
We become so consumed with losing that extra weight we put on over the past year that we become overwhelmed and fall into a “I can’t do it! Who was I kidding!” mindset and never recover…until the next January 1st.
Let’s end that cycle now by setting one small, attainable goal and attacking that goal one habit at a time. Once you’ve done that, reward yourself for the great work. After all, who doesn’t like rewards?
Fitmark Ambassador 2013