New Year, New You! Isn’t that the dominant message that’s in a lot of our minds? Whether or not we had a great year or a so so year this past year, welcoming a new year sets a certain tone to making changes and trying something different.
“…welcoming a new year sets a certain tone to making changes and trying something different.”
Do yourself a favor this year, here are some considerations to help you kick off 2017 in a positive way!
1. Reduce negative self-talk
We’re all guilty of this. It’s part of human nature to have self doubt and self defeating thoughts roaming around in our minds. The frequency and level of intensity of negative self-talk differs from person to person, but if we make a conscious effort to reduce or steer clear of them any time it comes up, we’re already one step ahead to a better year.
I am choosing to meditate more, specifically focusing on improving my self-esteem.
2. Stop making excuses
Unfortunately, making an excuse is so much simpler than committing to goals. If we allow excuses to dominate our minds and eventually our actions, then nothing gets done. “I don’t have enough time,” “I’ll do that tomorrow,” “I am too busy,” are some of the reasons why we aren’t achieving the goals we’ve set for ourselves.
Fear is also a big part of the reason why excuses tends to win the battle, because some of us would rather eliminate the chance of failure than to try at all and excuses are our crutches to justify not pursuing our goals.
I am making a rule for myself, if I am make an excuse to avoid a task or actions towards my goals then I will have to do whatever it is I am making an excuse for right there and there. Discipline is what it takes (warning: easier said than done)!
3. Remember to listen to your body
With the momentum of a New Year, many are fast to make a change, to commit to something, and make this year a great or even better year than the last. There’s danger in this all or nothing approach, because (let’s be real) it’s not going to last; especially with the unnecessary pressure you’re adding on yourself.
Remember to listen to your body and work with where it’s at. Have you slacked over the holidays? Then maybe starting off with two versus your usual five or six sessions will be a smart start. Are you finally ready to commit to a routine? Then maybe start with two days of higher intensity workouts and progress through the weeks by weaving in low intensity workouts to aim for a more active year.
I allow myself to take weekends off or choose active recovery activities like yoga to counter the hard work I’ve done throughout the week.
4. Stop Looking Around
We are all at a different point in our health and fitness journey. We are unique individuals. The journey towards better health and fitness is 100% about where you are and how you are doing. It is not about comparing yourself to the guy crushing those burpees in class or about your friend who dropped 10 kgs over the holidays. It is about asking yourself “Where am I? How am I doing? and What are my goals?” (Let’s also remember to set realistic goals).
There’s two things I do to stop myself from looking around in class. One, I think about the muscle group I am working on. For example, while executing a squat I think and focus on activating my butt muscles. Second, I distract myself by visualizing the toned bodies of people I admire (this also helps me push myself when completing a workout). There’s something about visualizing perfectly toned and chiseled abs that gets me revved up while completing a set of burpees.