How to refine your New Year’s Resolution (because ‘get in shape’ and ‘lose weight’ don’t work)

If your New Year’s Resolution is to ‘get in shape’, ‘go to the gym more frequently’, or ‘lose weight,’ you may already have begun to feel the frustration like our buddy, George.  These goals are too vague and chances are, if you’re like most of us, you’ll get bored or discouraged very quickly.  One source says only about 8% of people are successful in achieving their New Year’s Resolution. 

But if your Resolution is more specific, the progress you make toward achieving that goal will be more apparent and you’ll stay motivated.  Getting in better shape and losing weight will be a by-product of your progress.

Rather than try to ‘lose weight’ or ‘get fit’ which may lead to you going to the gym with no plan of what you want to accomplish or ability to judge when you’ve achieved your goal, try these suggestions instead:

  • Sign up for a road race that doesn’t afford you the ability to put off exercise.Practice the race distance tomorrow to see what you are currently capable of and work then towards improving your time (maybe by 20%)
  • Pick a bodyweight exercise (pull-up, push-up, air-squat) and try to increase the amount of repetitions you can do in a single session multiple times each week
  • Pick a sequence of exercises and complete them as fast as possible while keeping track of your time.  Try to improve your time whenever you attempt that workout.  (A very simple example is: 20 burpees, 30 sit-ups, 40 lunges, 20 push-ups)
  • Learn a new skill: could be anything from completing your first pull-up to learning how to rock climb 
  • Commit to going to a group exercise class 1-3 times per week
  • Find a sport you like and sign up for a league

Goals like these will get you in shape and help you shed fat with less stress and boredom. Take these suggestions and you’ll likely be part of the 8% that achieves their New Years Resolution.