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New Year, New Goals?

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Every year, millions of people make health and fitness focused New Year’s resolutions.

Whether those goals include losing weight, hitting the gym more, training for an upcoming event or just eating healthier, so many people start off strong only to have their resolutions dissolved into nothing after a few weeks. They sit on the couch, watching the “Biggest Loser,” and feeling guilty.

The excuses are always good, too. Let’s review a few:
There isn’t enough time
I’m too tired
I don’t need to work out
Working out is boring
I don’t like going to the gym alone
It’s too expensive
I don’t know what to do

Do these sound familiar? How do these make you feel?

Certainly not happy or motivated to reach your goals. But every person has used at least one of these excuses at some point in his or her life. You’re not alone.

How do you pick New Year’s resolutions that are attainable and will keep you motivated well past the first two weeks?

Make your resolution and goals SMART and you’ll be one step closer to achieving the greatness you deserve.

S: Specific: Have a detailed goal in mind. A perfect example would be, “I want to lose 25 pounds in four months and participate in a fun run.”

M: Measurable: By making your goals measurable, you’ll be able to track (and see) your results as you go. Take your measurements (chest, waist and hips) at the beginning, middle and end of the timeframe you choose. Write them down.

A: Attainable: Set yourself up for success. Create an attainable goal that you know you can reach.

R: Realistic: Make your resolutions realistic. If you are just starting an exercise plan, create a resolution that will be realistic for your body. “I want to lose 25 pounds and complete a 5K fun run in less than 45 minutes,” is a realistic goal.

T: Timely: Make your resolutions timely so you don’t lose focus. By setting a deadline you provide yourself with an end to your means. “I want to lose 25 pounds and run a 5K fun run in less than 45 minutes by March.

Now that you have a way to make your resolutions SMART, the next step is to find motivation to complete your workouts. Let’s be real. There will be numerous times when you’ll make excuses to avoid working out. No matter what the excuse is, you have to remind yourself that you matter and are deserve a healthy, fit body and lifestyle.

There are several ways to get through the workouts that you just don’t want to complete. These strategies will keep you inspired through those tough times.

1. Start with Your SMART Resolution
Write it down and post it somewhere you look every day (the fridge) so you read your goal every day.

2. Get Creative
Switch up your workouts or participate in different classes. Focus on specific muscle groups on specific days. Bring music to distract your mind during the cardio sessions.

3. Early Bird Gets the Worm
Get up early to complete your workout—this will get your blood pumping at the start of your day and will also get the obligation out of the way. Afterwards, head home to slug back a protein shake to help repair your muscles.

4. Be Your Own Best Friend
Take care of your body. Replenish it with healthy foods. In fact, diet is just as important—if not more—than exercising!

5. Reward Yourself
You work exceptionally hard. Plan to reward yourself with a treat of some kind. Buy yourself something tangible like new yoga pants or new running shoes. You deserve it.

Actions speak louder than words, think about all of the opportunities you have to set yourself up for success and reach your goals. Positivity is the key and only you can unlock the changes.