If, when looking in the mirror after the holiday season, you see a few extra pounds, remember that with the extra weight you laughed a lot with co-workers, you got to see friends & family from out of town, you shared in the joy of the season with loved ones.
While you may have had a few extra holiday cookies, you have the memories too.
Now that the holidays are over we can reset our focus, take time and decide what is important to us in the new year, and make a plan to make the changes we want for our health and fitness.
Follow these 5 Steps to Create Your Personal Plan to Shed the Holiday Pounds:
1. Set Realistic Expectations
2. Set Process Goals to Achieve Your Desired Outcome
3. Recognize What Works For You (& What Doesn’t)
4. Enlist a Support System
5. Start With Your “Why”
Set Realistic Expectations
Life is messy & complicated. Jumping on a restrictive diet, or creating restrictive goals can lead to failure when the complications of life mess us up, throw us off track, and make it easy to quit working towards our goals.
When aiming to lose body fat, try aiming for a half pound of body fat loss per week. If you do this consistently, it will add up to a huge transformation in just a few months!
Try working on one behavior change at a time to reach your goals.
Pick one of the following: meal prep for the week on Sundays, add more protein to your breakfast, track what you eat (calories & macros) 5-6 days per week on MyFitness Pal, cut out alcohol. Once this goal is met consistently and becomes a habit it doesn’t require anymore mental energy. Then you can pick another behavior goal to work towards!
Set Process Goals to Achieve Your Desired Outcome
Process goals allow us to focus on the behaviors necessary to move us toward our desired end state.
• Add 30 grams of protein to your breakfast
• Eat Vegetables with at least 2 meals every day
• Workout 4 days each week
• Sleep 7+ Hours Each Night
• Journal every night before bed
When we achieve these small process goals each small victory spikes our dopamine as we experience the feeling of success. The more we succeed the more we want to continue hitting small victories which helps us to stay motivated until we reach our goals!
Think: What process goals do you need to implement to help you to reach your weight loss goals?
Recognize What Works for You (& What Doesn’t)
Chances are you have had routines that have worked for you in the past (meal prepping on Sundays, working out at 5am 3-4 days a week, carrying a water bottle with you throughout the day, etc.). Picking these habits back up are an easy way to get back on track since you already have the blueprint for these habits stowed away.
Recognize that the process goals that work for other people might not work for you. Just because someone else lost weight on diet XYZ doesn’t mean this process is going to work with your lifestyle or for your goals.
Recognize what behaviors or habits you currently do that don’t serve your goals and cut them out of your life. If a behavior isn’t serving your goals, you need to replace them with healthy behaviors that get you toward where you want to go and who you want to be. Example: If you are drinking wine 3 nights a week, is this behavior serving you and helping you to reach your goals or working against you?
Think: What has worked for you in the past? And why did this work?
Think: What behaviors are you doing right now that don’t serve your goals? Is there any true benefit to these behaviors that serve your health and lifestyle goals?—If not, replace them with behaviors that will help you to reach your goals!
Enlist a Support System
When we enlist a support system into our goals we add accountability to what we say we are going to do. We add a fresh pair of eyes to help us see what we can’t see ourselves. We add emotional support to pick us up when we are down.
Get on the buddy system, share your goals with your friends & family, join a group nutrition challenge, enlist the help of a nutrition coach, etc. These are all great ways to get the support we need to make a behavior stick, to get us past the sticky bits so we can reach our goals.
Start With Your “Why”
When your “why” is strong enough it can help you overcome obstacles to help you find your way.
Why do you want to lose weight, build muscle, be healthier/fitter?
How will making changes in the gym and to your nutrition help you to live a better life outside of the gym?
What effect will losing weight help you to improve your relationships?
1. Write out your main fitness goal, and when you want to accomplish it by.
2. Know your why, write it down, share it with your support system.
3. Take consistent, imperfect, action every day until you reach your goal!
Reach Out For Help
If you have any questions, or need any help with shedding the holidays pounds, shoot me a message: email@example.com