For many of us, those heady health and fitness goals we set on January 1 won’t even survive the month. In fact, January 19 has come to be known as “Quitter’s Day”, with research revealing this to be the exact date most people give up on their New Year’s resolutions.
However, if you’re one of the thousands currently feeling the January 19 lull, there are some easy things you can do to bring yourself back from the brink.
“The main reason why people put fitness in the ‘too hard’ basket so soon is because they make unrealistic goals and have that ‘instant gratification’ mindsight,” says Michelle Furnis, group fitness instructor and TSG‘s Chief Commercial Officer, Health and Fitness in Australia/New Zealand.
“They expect to look like Gigi Hadid two weeks into January following a solid month of over-indulging during the ‘silly season’,” Michelle tells 9Honey.
To avoid this mistake, it’s really important to make small, realistic goals that “look beyond the aesthetic”.
“Fitness isn’t just about looking good, it’s about feeling good — and that comes with time,” Michelle explains.
The personal trainer has shared her four-pronged advice for anyone struggling with their health and fitness 2021 goals. Here’s what she had to say.
1. Take a moment
When you truly feel like chucking in the towel, Michelle says she always suggests taking a moment and reconsidering the goals you already have in place.
“Perhaps your current activity or routine might not be right for you,” she tells 9Honey.
“Fitness is personal and as such, it’s important to find what works for you and most importantly, something that you enjoy, you need to find the fun for you.”
2. Window shop
A lack of motivation can sometimes indicate boredom. So why drag yourself back to the gym when there could be other more fun and engaging ways to get your sweat on?
“The health and fitness industry continues to change, meaning there are more classes and different fitness environments that suit what you are looking for,” Michelle explains.
Technology has also made shopping around and trying new fitness regimes easier than ever.
“Whether it’s an intimate pilates class or a large group fitness session, it’s easy to book in and pay from the comfort of your phone.
“The new year is the perfect time to ‘window-shop’ for classes as many gyms and clubs have special introductory offers and discounts. There truly is a fitness experience for everyone.”
3. Start small
The issue with going ham with your fitness goals in early January is that not only do you risk injury and burn-out, but this approach isn’t sustainable.
“If you’re lacking that motivation, remember that fitness is a long game — it has to be part of your daily life, as it’s much easier to build new habits around existing ones,” Michelle suggests.
And the best way to set yourself for success?
“Set up short incremental goals, rather than a far reach goal. This helps you celebrate the small victories.”
4. Assemble a training team
From morning walks to signing up to a bootcamp, pairing up with a mate can do wonders for your motivation and enjoyment levels.
Michelle suggests rallying the troops to see if there are friends, family or work colleagues keen to work out with you, and make a regular thing of it.
“Consider pairing up with a trusted friend or partner as this helps ease the pressure and creates a sense of camaraderie — plus, there’s nothing like a friend to hold you accountable.”
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