The New Year is approaching and with it many around the world will aim to be more active in 2018, as they look to be fitter, healthier or simply look to improve the social aspects to their life.
Being lured into the outdoor world and into physical activity is nothing new but a common problem is that people start too big with their goals, aiming to complete a marathon just a few months into the year or promising time that they do not have to their hobby.
As such, many fall short of what they want and in turn often give up. Remarkably, just 8% of people stick to their New Year’s resolutions and falling short can lead to self punishment, self loathing and other things that are not good for your health.
Thankfully, there’s some easy tips that you can live by to ensure this doesn’t happen to you. The key ones are simple; start small, track your progress and plan things into your busy schedule. By doing this, it’s far easier to keep on track of your resolution and goals.
As the famous saying goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Neither is the healthy, slim or muscular figure you aspire to be. Hard work takes time and patience is crucial, so you can help your positivity by starting small.
Don’t jump in and sign up for a marathon straight away. Instead, that you can get involved in. It will be a challenge and will require training but it’s far easier to complete than a marathon, so it’s an easier goal to work towards and you’re also more likely to be able to persuade a friend to join you.
Running and marathon-like events aren’t as mundane as you think either. It’s not just miles through the streets or a park, as there’s - whether you want to crawl through mud, get your dog involved or combine your experience with swimming and cycling.
These different aspects can help keep things fresh too. Running around the block a few times certainly doesn’t sound as appealing as clambering through the mud with a group of friends- and this can certainly be a lot more memorable than a standard marathon, although you will of course get dirtier.
Track your progress
We’ve all been there. You set yourself a target, vow to meet it and then fall short. You feel like a failure and, because you haven’t reached what you intended to, you forget about all the positive work that you have done so far. This isn’t good for you, so you have to ensure that doesn’t happen.
By tracking your progress, whether it’s assessing your weight loss, best completion time or simply counting how long it’s been since you , you can provide a more positive atmosphere for yourself. Sure, you missed a recent target, but just look at how far you’ve come!
This also goes hand-in-hand with taking things one step at a time. You can work your way towards a bigger goal but reaching milestones along the way, the path ahead of you seems far less daunting. Just remember all sports stars started as a novice. It takes dedication to succeed and now these individuals are fighting to win competitions like the Tour de France or even the Premier League. Don’t forget, try a range of sports so you find the one you love and enjoy. The more you like participating, the more likely you are to carry on.
Nowadays even some betting websites will actually and you can have people betting on whether you can reach a certain level of BMI or any other health indicator. That might sound a bit far-fetched but many find it a good motivation especially when there are other people or money involved.
Milestones can also be used to provide a bit of healthy competition, as you can compete with a friend to see who can do the best on a certain day. Things like with leaderboards but always remember that your main competitor is yourself, and if you’re improving then you’re doing the right things!
As we all know too well, there is simply not enough hours in the day to get everything done that you have planned. As a result, many things will be forgotten about or simply put aside as there’s no time- and this can lead to negative thoughts about how you’re doing.
The easiest way to ensure you’re doing exactly what you want to is to write it into your schedule. Just as you’ll note down the time and date of an important meeting at work, you should work out an ideal opening for activities on your calendar- and then stick to it.
Managing time and tasks can help you feel far less stressful, which helps in all parts of your life. By planning, tracking and starting small, the road to a more active you lies ahead!