We’re a week into 2019. And how is it going for you so far? Are you someone that makes resolutions?
When you mention new year’s resolutions you get a variety of responses.
‘I don’t make them’
‘I already have my goals figured out’
It’s surprising how setting goals at this time of year generates a negative response. Maybe it’s due to the fact that a number of will fail in their attempt to achieve. Maybe it’s because if you’re not a goal oriented person it’s hard to connect and relate to the number of people that are. Maybe it could be that if the individual has tried before, and failed, they are reluctant to try again.
Regardless the reason to not making a resolution or goal at this time of year I’m OK with it. And maybe this has to do with a part of my definition of success is to fail faster. I’d rather find out the efforts that don’t lead to success, sooner, and get on to success sooner as well.
So for the sake of this post let’s assume we are the type of people that sets goals or resolutions. And let’s also assume that 2019 hasn’t started out on the right foot. That’s not an unreasonable scenario as we know most won’t achieve their goal.
But that’s not entirely true. When we say most won’t achieve their goal we usually mean this on the first attempt. But how often do we get things right the first time in life? How often do we have to try again, change our approach, ask for help or whatever else before success happens?
With that in mind below are 5 things that can derail a health and fitness goal. And with each there are some solutions to spin this challenge into an opportunity. And then use this opportunity to help you achieve success.
1.Injury – Maybe you’ve started 2019 with an injury. it could be that you’ve put out your low back. Or maybe you’ve tweaked your knee at the ski hill. Regardless of what the injury is recognize this is an opportunity to learn about your body. It’s an opportunity to come back stronger. And it’s an opportunity to do what you normally wouldn’t do.
Consider the following example. You love deadlifting. So much so that you refer to December as Deadcember. And you’ve got aspirations to put up a big number in this lift and maybe enter a powerlifting meet. But now you’ve put out your back. Now what?
Well, this might become an opportunity to get some treatment from a physiotherapist or massage therapist. You may learn why you got injured in the first place. You might learn which stretches and drills need to be a part of your daily practice. And by stepping back and focussing on these you might be able to get stronger overall when you come back.
Rather than get frustrated when you get injured see this as an opportunity to strengthen the whole. And if you’re someone not likely to take a rest day, stepping away from the platform might be a good thing as well.
2. Travel – Are you someone that travels for work? Or maybe you’ve been blessed with the opportunity to get away for some R&R. For many travel is a common scapegoat to achieving the best results. But it doesn’t have to be.
We can use time as a way to improve our health.
If you’ve ever thought about giving intermittent fasting a try travelling can be a great time to make this work. And if looking after others prevent you from having time for yourself, time away might be a good time to focus on you. If there isn’t a gym where you’ll be maybe you can go for a run, swim, charge up a flight of stairs, do some mobility or extra core work.
3. Nutrition – Did you over indulge over the Christmas break? If you did, don’t worry. What I mean by that is that it’s done. There’s no benefit now to continuing to play this over in your mind.
But sometimes when we overdo something in our life we are less likely to indulge in that same behaviour. I lived in Mexico for a year after high school and I can’t even smell tequila these days without my stomach turning over.
So if this sounds like you in terms of having an excess of food and drink recognize this could be an opportunity to eat healthily. Your friends and family will be amazed at your will-power. Little do they know, right?
4. Time – Do you ever find it’s difficult to find the time for exercise? If this sounds like you than there may be two solutions that could help.
The first is to recognize we’ll never find the time. We make the time. So this involves a shift in mindset and changing our priorities.
The second thing that could help is to find the dose of exercise that fits your life. Somehow it seems people get the misconception that unless they’re putting in 60 minute training sessions on a daily basis there’s no point. Instead we should look to figure out what amount of exercise we can always do even when life gets busy.
For some this might be 4 hours per week. For others it could be 2. Maybe it’s 15 minutes daily. Obviously better results will come when a minimum threshold of exercise is done but that doesn’t mean there are zero benefits from a small dose of exercise.
And here’s the key…even with a small dose of exercise i.e. 15 minutes, our moods improve. We are more likely to make better nutritional choices and get better sleep. So don’t dismiss the benefits of even small amounts of exercise.
5. Support – Do you have a training partner? Or is there someone you look forward to seeing at training? And you are accountable to this other person, and vice-versa? Maybe January has started and this person hasn’t been there for you. Maybe you’re on your own.
For many this can be the reason to throw in the towel. We can justify it in our mind saying we’ll wait for the other person. When they’re ready then we can get started.
That’s the easy way. But the best results don’t come from taking the easy road. Success comes from getting out of our comfort zone. It comes from trying a new approach. It forces us to take the lead and get started solo.
And the thing is once we try it this way we’ll find new strength. Personally, I’ve got the most out of training and competition when there were lots of reasons to say no. Maybe I show up for a race or training session and none of my crew is there. It would be very easy to drop to that level. If no one else is doing it than I don’t have to either. Instead if we can find it in ourselves to step and do the work when no one else is you will gain more than the physical gains normally expected from training. You will gain a mental toughness that goes with you all in situations and establishes a new rule for yourself as to how you will live your life going forward.
5 things that normally trip people up with their new year’s resolutions. If any of these apply to you look to spin this challenge into an opportunity and reap the rewards of better health and performance.