New Year’s resolutions – if we all stuck to them, our lives would be much different to what they actually are now. Most of the time, people make a resolution, stick with it for a few weeks, and then abandon it entirely. Until next January, that is.
Losing weight and getting fit are right at the top of most peoples lists. For most of them, it will be top of the list next year too. That’s because they’re going to start off full of motivation, ready to rip into it. A couple of months in though, that fire will be gone, replaced by boredom. At this stage, most people just walk away until another time.
If you want to be one of the few who actually sticks to their word, you need a different approach. Here are 5 top tips to help you lose weight in the long term.
- Take Slow Steps
The biggest mistake people make is to put too much pressure on themselves. I know you want it all now, but it doesn’t work that way. Pushing too hard from the start can make the whole experience frustrating and grindy. The effect is that you lose motivation and begin to hate your new lifestyle, so it gets abandoned and you go back to your old way of living. Avoid this by making changes small and slowly. Start by doing some exercise during January and a couple of minor dietary changes. Then use February to make more changes to your diet. From here you can continue to make changes or increase the intensity/workload month by month. By summertime, you’ll be a machine!
- Have an Eating Plan
A plan is important when it comes to food. If you just wing it, you’ll probably fall off pretty soon when it comes time to eat and you don’t have any healthy options ready – or that take-away just looks to darn tempting! Creating a plan for your food means you have a list of what to eat and when. It also means you can see exactly what you’re eating, so if you do have a couple of cheat meals, you know about it and you can factor in the effects.
- Use a Good Workout/Trainer
Exercise isn’t just about putting the work in, you also need some structure to your routine if you want it to get you anywhere. Motivation and encouragement are helpful tools at this time so using a trainer or app can be extremely helpful. Something like the personal trainer app from Aaptiv can give you simple, clear directions and the encouragement you need to make it through each workout. By following a structured workout plan, you can get away with less time in the gym because you know you’re making the most of your time when you are there. Results should soon follow!
- Keep Yourself Happy!
Loss of motivation is the biggest reason most people fail their new year’s resolutions. They make it too hard on themselves and end up hating the new lifestyle. The problem is that these changes are supposed to be lifestyle changes, so they’re supposed to stick for the long-term. Allow the odd cheat meal or day off. Just plan in advance for them so they don’t get out of hand, and keep yourself happy and motivated for your goal.
- Reward Yourself For Success
When you are sticking to the plan and things are going well, give yourself small rewards. This doesn’t have to be something like a calorie-loaded treat – it can be a day out, a piece of clothing, or anything else you enjoy. By rewarding your success, you create a positive feedback loop and have more reason to keep on going.