new years resolutionAlthough we often think of the New Year as a time to reboot fitness goals, there’s no time like the present. Why wait? Since every day, or every moment for that matter, presents an opportunity to begin again, go for your goals now. Here are some steps you can take to get a jumpstart on those fitness resolutions.

Set yourself up for success

Let’s face it. This probably isn’t your first time around the block with a fitness resolution. As you dust off your goals take a moment to honestly assess where you went wrong, as well as where you went right the last time. Here are some common pitfalls and how to avoid them:

  • Unrealistic expectations – healthy weight loss happens at about one pound or two per week. When you start your fitness resolution by saying you will lose 20 pounds in a month you are setting yourself up for disappointment. That’s a clear path to discouragement and derailed goals. Instead, set up goals that are challenging but actually achievable.
  • Unclear motivation – when you are clear about your why, the how is often easier. Take a few moments to decide why you want to achieve your fitness goals. How will your life be changed or improved? What benefits do you anticipate? Why do those benefits really matter to you?
  • Inadequate planning paired with plenty of guilt – take a look at your schedule to see where you can make room for fitness. There are 168 hours in a week, surely you can keep two and commit them to exercise. The world will not cave in or stop, I promise. Remember, if you always put yourself last others will likely follow your example. Making time for self can increase your chances of success with fitness resolutions.

Get help from a few of your friends

men exercising on gym machineFitness is often more fun when it is enjoyed by more than one. Enlist a girlfriend, your kids, spouse or neighbor to join you for regular sweat sessions. You are more likely to stay with it when you have an accountability buddy.

Write it down, make it happen

Decide exactly what you will do, how often and when. Approach your fitness resolution with a real plan. Vague ideas and promises about what you want to do rarely lead to anything other than more broken promises. Tell yourself what you are going to do, make a plan and make a way to make it happen. After all, if you can’t trust yourself, who can you trust?

Monitor your progress

Keep a journal, shout yourself out on Facebook or wear a fitness tracker. Do whatever it takes to celebrate each step and share the accomplishment of staying on track. Noticing how far you have come is so much more encouraging than lamenting how far you think you still need to go. Finally, don’t let a bad day, week or even month keep you off track. Remember, the New Year isn’t the only time you can recommit to fitness. You can start, and start over, any time.