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Have you broken your fitness resolutions yet?

Make exercise a habit in 2023, Betty Doyling advises (Photograph supplied)

It is Week 2 of 2023. How is it going so far? Have you tried to devote yourself to a newer, healthier version of yourself by signing up to a fitness class or changing your diet dramatically?

Unfortunately a lot of us have already broken that pact with ourselves and this time next year we will be making the same old resolutions.

So if you are truly looking to lose weight, get stronger, and feel healthier overall this year, keep reading.

Between 80 per cent and 90 per cent of new year’s resolutions fail. That’s around eight out of ten people. So you are not alone. It happens to us all. But why does it happen? Existing habits have to be overcome to form new ones. Below are some of the main reasons new year’s resolutions are broken.

1. Changing everything at once

In the fitness arena, obtaining a healthy lifestyle can seem extreme and give an all-or- none approach. But it definitely does not work that way.

Try to only make about two to three small changes at a time: if I feel hungry at night, I will drink water first; I will floss and brush my teeth every night; I will take the stairs instead of the elevator. Focus on one thing, do it well then move on to the next new habit.

2. Starting too big

It is awesome to have hefty goals. I am all for that. But every goal must start with a single step. Starting off with signing up to five classes a week and eating only proteins is not sustainable and will have you burnt out in a week.

New habits need to be non-threatening. They should be a manageable switch. Start by exercising one day per week or cutting back on sugary foods instead of going all in.

You may see your fitness crush and admire their strength and dedication. However, they have likely mastered small habits over a period of time that have become their daily ritual. Going to the gym is not laborious for them. It is ingrained into their daily lives and has become a habit.

So if you are new to exercise or starting new habits, focus on one thing for a few weeks. Once you have committed yourself to going to that circuit training class once a week, for example, add another day. Once that is mastered, add another aspect of fitness.

Go for the gold, but start with small steps that will lead to consistency and build on those.

3. Create a ritual, wait on results

If you follow fitness accounts I am sure you have noticed before and after photos. We are obsessed with seeing results in fitness.

After my brain surgery in 2021, there were no dramatic physical changes that happened. In fact, even though I continued to work out, nothing really changed physically as a result of my hormonal issues. However, I did not stop working out because of it. I still enjoyed the way I felt after working out so I on kept pushing. It’s been a year and a half and I am finally seeing the physical gains of staying consistent. So, the bottom line is this – if you desire to see results, you need to form new habits. And for those new habits to develop, you first need to fall in love with a new routine. Only then will the results will come.

4. Environment switch

My client said to me this weekend as she contemplated staying in bed instead of coming to class: “The only thing that is stopping us from getting in shape is ourselves.” She is correct. Changing habits in a negative environment makes fitness efforts virtually impossible. We are responsible for our environment: the people we choose to associate with; the food we choose to pack in the refrigerator and cabinets. The life you live today is a result of your environment. The biggest change that will make a habit successful is executing it in an environment designated to make that habit flourish.

So as we enter Week 2 of 2023, let’s try and follow one basic rule: find a way for these behavioural changes to fit seamlessly into your routine to keep you from falling off the wagon.

Have a great new year and B-Active For Life.

Betty Doyling is a certified fitness trainer and figure competitor with more than a decade of experience. Look for B. ActiveForLife on Facebook

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Published January 11, 2023 at 7:57 am (Updated January 11, 2023 at 7:57 am)

Have you broken your fitness resolutions yet?

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