It’s that time of year again where you promise that you’re going to lose that couple of pounds, pack on muscle and quit your bad habits.
This year though, we’re going to make sure you achieve those goals. We’re going to make sure you don’t hit any of the walls that you usually encounter. We are going to do this by explaining why you hit them and how you can avoid them in the first place!
You don't set goals
You want to lose weight? You want to put on muscle? Ok, how much muscle? And by when? These are questions you need to ask so you know where you’re going and how you will measure your success. A 2014 study by Matthews et. al. showed that 76% of people who had written, focused goals achieved those goals, compared to the 46% who achieved their goals without a plan.
You set unreasonable goals
You’ve decided to set a goal but you’ve said you want to lose a stone in 2 weeks. Unless you are living on a drop of water every day, you’re not going to get that much change in your desired time frame. Then you will either lose heart or be too harsh on yourself in light of your failure to achieve your goals. The saying goes “Rome wasn’t built in a day but they were laying bricks every hour,” sums it up perfectly. Treat your goals as small bricks to be easily achieved over time. If you’re unsure about what your goals should be, come and speak to one of the Fitness Team who can help.
You don't measure your goals
Now you’ve got a reasonable goal but you don’t know if you’ve hit it. Make sure before you start your exercise journey, you measure the aspects of yourself that you want to change. For example, consider getting your body fat percentage measured to make sure you know if any weight gain is muscle or fat.
You've hit a plateau
So, you’ve set your goals, they are reasonable and they are measurable. It was all going great, but now your progress has slowed/stopped.
This, in most cases, is down to the fact that you haven’t changed your exercise/nutritional stimuli. As it was pointed out in last month’s article, altering your workout volume will help your results. The same goes for whether you’re trying to lose weight or get fitter... if you haven’t challenged yourself with new distances or workouts, your body won’t have had to adapt. Remember, what doesn’t challenge you won’t change you.
You're not eating enough/You're eating too much
You’ve followed our advice on all the other points, but you’re still not seeing the results you promised yourself. The key the majority of the time will rest on your diet. If you eat more than your body needs, you will put on weight/muscle. If you eat less than your body needs, you will lose weight. It’s that simple. See one of our trainers about finding out how many calories your body needs to give your goals a kick start.