Alright everyone, a new year is upon on us and the new year’s resolutions and goal setting is underway for many people. A fresh start to a new year tends to motivate us to take action, but unfortunately that motivation is often very short lived. A vast majority will end up quitting after a short few weeks, a smaller percentage will stick with their plan for three to four months before quitting, and a tiny percentage will actually reach their goal within that year.
The real problem that sets us up for failure is that our “resolutions” are too extreme. We set our expectations too high and did not effectively map out a plan in order to achieve that goal. The actions we initially took to achieve the goal was simply not sustainable. So why set up a goal that is going to make us fail and cause great disappointment? We’re not. We are going to change that approach.
We must start small and work in a progressive manner over time based on our adherence. It is so important to implement nutritional and training changes that are sustainable to you and only you. Take into account where you’re starting from and what is realistic for you, not what works for someone else. Even if the plan is the best out there, it won’t matter if you’re unable to follow it consistently over time. Consistency is everything, and without that we have nothing.
It is much more effective to look at what we have been doing in regards to training and diet and make small changes. For example, to understand this in a simple way, going from training three times per week to four times per week is not only realistic but also much more sustainable than going from two days per week to seven days per week. Once you have made some changes to your current diet and training program and have sustained it consistently for a set period of time, you can then implement additional small changes.
The human mind does not do well with extremes even though we tend to fall into them over and over. We are an “all or nothing” type species and tend to get frustrated very easily. Many feel that if they are not able to be 100% on a plan, then they should not follow anything at all. This is a very counterproductive mindset. Instead, have the mindset that you will be as close to 100% as you can given your current situation. Then over a period of say six months, your average might be 85-90%. That is a great passing grade and you will make significant progress. On the other hand, going from 100% to 0% might bring down your average to 50-60%, which is NOT a passing grade and you will have made very little progress, leading to frustration and the desire to give up.
Life is tough and things never go smoothly, but we have to learn to stay on our path regardless of what is going on around us. We might not be 100% but that is ok. Although all of this may sound silly, it is the truth. The best training and nutrition program is only as good as your ability to consistency follow it over time. You do not have to be 100% to make ground. You must make small changes, stick with those changes, and build over time.
Do not wait to work toward your personal goals—the time is now. You do not need a new year to do it. Life is about becoming a better version of ourselves, physically and mentally. We may all have different goals, but the approach is always the same. Success comes down to a realistic plan, discipline to carry out the plan when you do not want to, and consistency to follow that plan over an extended period of time.