By: Michelle Shorten, MD
If you’re struggling to stick with your resolution to exercise more in 2022, you’re not alone. Many Americans set lofty New Year’s resolutions only to feel defeated by the time February rolls around. If you’ve fallen off track, consider these recommendations:
- Be Specific. One reason people fail at resolutions is because their goals are too broad. Saying you want to get healthy leaves the door wide open. Instead, make a list of smaller goals that are easier to tackle. Make a goal of eating three vegetables a day. Shoot for making it to the gym just two days a week if that’s all your schedule allows. Once you master those goals, you can be more ambitious as you go.
- Celebrate Your Wins. Focus on the positive. No matter how small, little wins add up. Did you choose water over soda today? Good for you! Did you make it to the gym twice this week even though your goal was to make it three times? Celebrate the workouts you completed. You WILL experience challenges and setbacks. Don’t strive for perfection. Strive for improvement.
- Course Correct. If January didn’t go as you hoped, it doesn’t mean you failed. Take a look at what went wrong and adjust your plan. Maybe you had good intentions of waking up early all month, but realized morning workouts aren’t for you. Even the most successful people have setbacks. They’ve just learned to course correct when what they’re doing doesn’t work.
- Always Remember Your Why. When you set a goal, make sure you’re aware of all the reasons why you want to achieve it. Is your goal to have more energy to enjoy your kids or grandkids? Or maybe you want to fit into an old pair of jeans. Write down all the reasons why your goal is important to you. Committing to a workout routine is hard. It takes dedication and discipline. When your motivation is low, always remember your why.