January 4. 2017

A New Year

Yes that's right. It's a new year again and a new chance to change the things around you that you think require improvement. Each year, people make these things called "resolutions" where they decide they've finally had enough or they are going to do that certain something they've been planning for the past decade. It's the time of reflection on the last year and repentance if you don't see that it was perfect. 


New Years is a great time of year, but to me it's no different than any other day. Here's the thing. If you wait until the new year each year, well you're probably not getting much done in the way of what you want to do. You probably work hard at your job, work hard being a parent or student, and then neglect yourself and say "I'll fix it next year". Of course a huge majority of folks who make New Year's Resolutions get tired and burn out after the first month. That's why we see such an influx at the gyms. People decide they finally are going to put in some work and then realize "this isn't easy" and give up. 

In my opinion, making any kind of resolution around the new year is almost like setting yourself up for failure. I used to do these and found myself in the exact trend I am describing. Each year it used to be about getting in shape. I'd start out strong and then quickly devolved back into the same bad habits again. I watch others do the same thing year after year as well. 

The problem is that we are putting way too much stress on ourselves. First you have the stress of actually putting in the work for your resolution, which if it were an easy thing, you probably would have done it a long time ago. Then we have the stress of living up to not only our own expectations, but everyone else's that we told about it because we all know that other people's opinions of our self image are important. Finally we have the mental side of it all. Realizing that what we are trying to accomplish is usually a bit much to process at one time. 

Resolving to change your life for the better is not a bad thing. It's a great thing. The bad thing is setting up unrealistic expectations and trying to achieve too much at one time. If your goal was to lose weight this year, that's fantastic! You absolutely can do it. You just have to remember something. You can't lose fifty pounds all at once, it takes time, structure, and will power. So why not instead commit to losing five or ten and moving to the next bit afterwards. That seems much more achievable right? It is for sure. The same can apply for really any resolution. 

We must limit ourselves and set smaller goals. I've talked about this many times in the past and I still see folks going down the same trend. I'm not alone in talking about this either. Almost any fitness professional you will talk to will tell you something along the same lines. You've got to be patient, you've got to keep going, and you cannot give up if it doesn't go your way one week. 

I've also talked before about getting back up if you fall. If you did make a resolution, then I applaud you for wanting to make a change. If you do not make it however because you slipped up somehow and just threw in the towel, then I'm sorry, that's where you are going wrong. You can slip up, it's not an awesome thing to do, but we all do it. Anyone that is able to be on the ball 100% of the time is the most committed person in the world. If you do slip up, it's fine. Brush yourself off and keep going. Don't let one slip, however bad, cascade into not trying to reach your goal. 

I realize the start of this blog seems to paint a negative picture about making New Year's Resolutions, but that's not my intended purpose. My purpose is to help you think about what you are doing and approach it a more logical way. It's a positive thing to make a change if it's a healthy one. We just cannot allow the stigma of making it on a certain day our precedent for accomplishing feats we couldn't previously. It's quite a cliche to make a resolution these days. It doesn't have to be a bad thing though. 

Small goals, small goals, small goals. There, I said it three times so you'll remember. 

We need those small goals so that we can ensure that we will be able to complete what we've set out to. Trust me, it's so much more feasible this way and a lot less stressful.

Get in the gym, welcome the new comers, or if you are a new comer, try to be a positive addition to your gym. 

Ask questions if you need to, but be respectful and have fun. No one is where they are today because they started there. They had to put in hard work and dedicate a portion of their life to what they believe is important. 

Have a fantastic rest of your week and stay strong! The large eating holidays are finally over folks! They are over! So it's time to buckle down again. 

Thanks so much,

Adam Hartley 

Co-Owner/Coach Custom Fintess Consulting


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