Whether you love ‘em or avoid ‘em, setting well thought-out New Year’s Resolutions is the first step in starting your New Year exercise plan.
If you’re struggling with setting – not to mention committing to – healthy fitness goals and resolutions, read on to find out what’s specific and realistic, yet ambitious, enough. Or should you just stick to the basics?
The key in getting started with your New Year exercise plan is getting specific with your fitness-related resolutions.
Resolving to lose weight, gain muscle, or run more sounds hopeful, but without a specific goal you’re more likely to fall short.
So, what is a specific goal, then? Well, a specific fitness goal could be for example:
- Losing 15 pounds by June
- Sculpting visible bicep muscles by strength training three times per week
- Training for and running a 5K in March
Want to learn more on how to jumpstart your New Year exercise plan? Here’s how you can set and commit to your healthy fitness resolutions and goals.
1. Set Specific goals
A specific and measurable goal could be:
“I want to drop my body fat percentage by X%.”
To review and make sure the goal is also attainable, you should also plan and document how to make that happen:
“I commit to training consistently, working out beyond my comfort zone and maintain a healthier and more balanced diet, particularly on the weekends.”
“My goal is to get back to running more consistently and to push myself to the limit with kickboxing and Krav Maga three times a week.”
2. Set a deadline
If you want to make that even more specific, agree on a deadline with yourself – by when will you achieve this goal?
“By the end of this year, I will be able to do an unassisted pull-up.”
3. Be Realistic, but Compassionate
“I will lose the 55 pounds I gained over the year.”
If this sounds familiar, the first thing is to show understanding and compassion towards yourself and be clear and honest about what led you to this situation.
“I want to get my body baby ready! I’m focusing on my nutrition and moving my body in ways that I love.”
“After a long break from exercise, I’ve gotten off to a great start by starting Zumba and spin classes and tracking my daily activity and calories.”
4. Be ambitious – but smart
“I will hike a mountain in every state in the US!”
“I’ll complete a sub-3 marathon.”
You may set an ambitious racing goal for yourself, like a sub-2:20 marathon in January or a bucket-list-race, like an ultra marathon. While both of those goal races are quite long, that doesn’t mean you should only focus on long runs. In fact, the key is to be fast at shorter distances like the 5K and 10K and do smart training that incorporates speed work, strength training and enough recovery. With the addition of some longer single runs, it will all come together.
4. Go Back To Basics
It’s not always necessary to find and try something new and mind-blowing. Sometimes it’s best to stick to the basics and what you know… or knew before. So, it’s kind of new – even though weirdly familiar.
Maybe you’re planning to go back to an old interest or passion and plan to keep crushing your training, diligently follow your diet, and hone your physique as much as possible.
“I’ll go back to my pre-pregnancy running training but with a workout buddy – my baby. I’d love to run another half marathon – with a stroller this time around!”
“I’m still coming off of injury so my fitness goal for now is to stay healthy and have fun while I’m at it. I plan to start from the beginning and take it slow and steady.”
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Please note that the information provided in the Polar Blog articles cannot replace individual advice from health professionals. Please consult your physician before starting a new fitness program.