I’ve finally found a fitness-focused New Year’s resolution that’s worth making. And here it is, along with 10 client-proven ways to reach your own health and fitness goals this year.
If you’re reading this, it means you survived the holidays.
It’s a wonderful time of the year: Kids and toys everywhere. In-law invasions, family squabbles and debating whether or not Lethal Weapon is a Christmas film or not (Yes, it is).
I think the only thing missing this year has been the snow but there is time for all that yet.
Right now, having spent most of the last week on my butt with a glass of wine/beer/whisky never far away and way too much festive food, I’m feeling fat and sluggish.
So here we are, it’s that time again – New Year Resolutions
This year, as I contemplate my own year ahead, I thought I should share some resolutions that are actually worth making plus some tips to help make them last longer than the usual few days!
Let’s face it, stats on New Year’s Resolutions — especially fitness ones — are abysmal. Packed gyms on January 2 deserted on March 2.
Why is that?
I believe it is because, despite the best of intentions, many resolutions are unrealistic, especially when it involves hours (that you haven’t got) in the gym and/or an expectation that you will be lean again in a few weeks
We need to keep it real people (as Mick Flanagan would say. Life has a habit of getting in the way.
What does that mean? It means something like this:
All the kids are sick (at the same time), so you’re getting virtually no sleep…
Your mother-in-law is going through cancer treatment and you visit daily…
It’s Christmas/Passover/Diwali/Eid or the long weekend…
Because of the holiday, you’ve got a tight deadline at work…
When you’re stressed your lower back acts up…
And just as find a spare 30 minutes for a workout you’ve been looking forward to all day, the cat pukes on the living room carpet!
That, my friends, is fitness in the context of life in the real world. So, is it any wonder most fitness and weight loss resolutions fail?
If you think about it, most health and fitness plans live outside the context of a real world: Real life can be messy and complicated and unpredictable.
All that being true, some people succeed with their New Years Resolutions, despite the fact that life affects them too.
So why don’t we look at how our clients do it?
I run a Personal Training company, so when it comes to figuring out health and fitness in a real-world context, I’m ideally placed.
My clients go through a coaching programme of exercise and healthy eating for up to a year. During this time, we learn how to make their health and fitness goals a reality, even as the chaos of life continues.
This is what we have learned and although not necessarily in the same order, the clients with the most success, follow these habits. See what they say:
1. Check in with yourself every morning
“I start my day with reading my Precision Nutrition Coaching lesson and then doing my exercises. It’s essentially plugging into myself first thing every morning. By doing my thing when I wake up, I remind myself that I am healthy and happy and I have more to give to the world.”
2. Eat protein at breakfast
“I include protein at every breakfast. My favourite: breakfast meatballs. Turkey + shredded veggies onion), quick oats, egg whites and spices made into balls and cooked in muffin trays in advance. Then I heat ‘em up in the morning.”
3. Bring a lunch you’re excited to eat
“I bring a lunch that is a simple salad with meat for protein. Adding little extras like seeds and nuts to my salad along with avocado makes it something I look forward to eating, instead of leftovers".
4. Pre-prepare dinners
“PLANNING & PREP! This has been huge for me. I come home late and I’m often rushed to get some food in me. Now I just take everything I’ve already cut up or cooked (in advance) and put it in a pan. It’s much less stressy. I’m eating slowly and not inhaling food right past my full point.
5. Eat at the table
“In the past, I ate dinner in a rush, then scurried of to do the next thing. I have made a conscious effort to sit down and eat the meal more slowly, so I can actually remember tasting and enjoying it.”
6. Exercise whenever, wherever, and however possible
“I never choose the closest parking spot. This way I can get in a little more walking. Also, at work, I walk about as much as possible to the printer, the get water cooler and up and down the stairs (avoiding the lift). I visit my colleagues at their desk rather than phone them, or email”.
7. Aim for “a little better” instead of “perfect”
“It’s not about being perfect. It’s about gradual and continuous improvement. I used to get really down on myself if I ate unhealthy food or missed some workouts and felt like I had failed. Now I feel that I’ve put in some great work, and I can do even better tomorrow and the next day.
8. Get support from wherever you can
“I use a meal service for healthy meals, which are pre-portioned. I commute an hour each way to/from work and I work long hours as an engineer, so having the ingredients there with recipes has helped immensely.”
9. Find accountability
“My coach consistently reaches out to me, and the PN lessons remind me to move daily and claim the day for myself. Doing those things before I head out to work keep me focused. It reminds me this is my life and my choices can be life-affirming in every moment.”
10. Show up again the next morning
“Show up each day and do what you can on that day. Don’t jump ahead or overdo you planned exercises. This is not a race. It’s not a diet. It’s your life.”
What could your “real world resolution” look like?
My wife and I have no idea what life will bring this year, the year of Brexit but we’re committed to doing the best we can, when we can, with whatever we’ve got.
I hope you are too.
With the New Year upon us, it’s an interesting time to make (or renew) your commitment to health and fitness. Why not do that while considering the context of your own unique, interesting, and (no doubt) challenging life?
What to do next
Consider your health and fitness goals for this coming year. What does a renewed commitment to health and fitness look for YOU — in the context of YOUR own unique, interesting and challenging life? How could you aim to make things “a little bit better” this year, instead of “perfect or nothing”?
Celebrate your accomplishments from the past year. Even if there’s lots you want to change, think back and call out at least two or three things you did well this past year. Give yourself a pat on the back for any and all signs of progress, no matter how small.
Plan for things to go wrong. What challenges do you anticipate might interfere with the progress you want to make Think about those roadblocks now. Consider some adjustments and workarounds in advance, accepting the messy “real-world” stuff will be key to your success.
Start Small. What is one little thing you could do today to help you prepare for success this year? Maybe it’s researching a healthy meal delivery service for busy weeks, downloading a relaxing meditation podcast, or booking a babysitter one evening a week. Take one small action now, and you’ll already be on your way.
Take inspiration from our clients. Do any of the strategies above intrigue you? Pick one and give it a shot. If you usually eat dinner on the go, try sitting down for a meal at the table. If you want accountability, find someone to check in with.
Remember, you don’t have to get it “perfect”. Not now, not ever. All you have to do is make an effort and keep showing up every day.
Want help becoming the healthiest, fittest, strongest version of you?
Most people know that regular movement, eating well, sleep, and stress management are important for looking and feeling better. Yet they need help applying that knowledge in the context of their busy, sometimes stressful lives.
Over the past 12 years, we’ve used the method developed by Precision Nutrition to encourage healthy eating and have introduced fitness exercises at home with them. In this way, we have helped hundreds of clients lose fat, get stronger, and improve their health… for the long-term… no matter what challenges they’re dealing with.
We’ll be opening up places in our HEAT programmes in April and October this year
If you’re interested in coaching and want to find out more, I’d encourage you to join our pre-sale list by getting in touch on the form below. Being on the list gives you two special advantages.
You’ll pay less than everyone else. I like to reward the most interested and motivated people because they always make the best clients. Join the pre-sale list and you’ll save up to 54% off the general public price, which is the lowest price I ever offer.
You’re more likely to get a place. To give clients the personal care and attention they deserve and so that I can physically deliver the fitness training, we only open up these programmes twice a year.
By joining the pre-sale list you’ll get the opportunity to register 24 hours before everyone else, increasing your chances of getting a place when you want it.
If you’re ready to change your body, and your life, with help from the best of nutrition coaching and fitness training at home, this is your chance.
Places open First Week in April and October — don't miss out!
Or click the link to our contact form and choose which programme(s) you are interested in
and we'll send you more info. Plus you'll get the chance to register 24 hours early and get our lowest price ever — up to 38% off the general price.