There is something exciting about the month of January. The holidays are behind us, and it is time for a fresh start, a clean slate. So, what do you do when the newness of January fades away? Because, let’s be honest, there is nothing magical about January. The magic happens in the mess, during the process of achieving our goals, not setting them. It is important to have properly, and intentionally, set attainable health and fitness goals for ourselves.
I am learning not to set impossible goals. This year, I have practical, simple goals, that are trackable, and manageable. I am taking the realistic approach, so I don’t quit because I can’t meet the lofty expectations I set for myself. I am not big on new year’s resolutions, and I am not one of those #GOALS girls. *eye-roll* lame, I know.
I am making a commitment to continual improvement. To BE in the moment. I am choosing to focus on the process and the actions needed to achieve the outcome. The best example I can think of is this… It is like focusing on a single pitch, each play of the ball game, instead of staring at the score board, waiting for the numbers to magically change.
Relating to health and fitness, I want to continue becoming the strongest most capable version of myself, gradually improving the process.
We all have various fitness and nutritional aspirations. I believe, to be intentional and mindful, writing down our goals is the most important thing we can do. Then, give yourself grace.
Starting January 1st, our newsfeeds and inboxes are full of goals and resolutions, crushing this, reinventing that….by March, the motivation and enthusiasm has faded. So, I want to share with you 6 things that keep me motivated, on track, and will maximize your workouts, all. year. long.
Nutrition is key to maximizing your workouts and seeing results. This year, I am ditching detoxes, cleanses, and clean eating. Yep. Buh-byeeee! I am replacing these with a whole food reset. I have made the intention to follow people like McKel Hill and Kimberly Snyder, who use a more evidence-based science behind whole foods, which supports our body in doing what it already does best, DETOX…every minute of the day. The most important piece of advice that I have learned, and can pass along, is finding balance. Cliché, yes. Boring, probably. No matter what workout I try, what meal plan I use, I always circle back to finding and maintaining balance; mentally, physically, and emotionally. I do not restrict myself from foods that I love (tacos are here to stay ya’ll), and I do not work out obsessively. I do however, remain aware of what I consume. Allow yourself to indulge here and there, while also making time to work out or be active 4-5 days a week.
Not only will being mindful boost your overall health and wellbeing, it decreases stress, and helps foster a mind-body connection with your workouts. It allows you to pay attention to what your body is telling you; when to push your limits, and when to respect them. You have made the decision to plan and schedule your workouts, why not maximize that time; Be present, get in, get out.
Stick and stay. It all boils down to consistency. When your heart is aligned, it is easier to remain consistent. Attach a “why” to your health and fitness goals. Get the heart involved. When you do, your purpose is fueled by passion, and consistency is sure to follow. Fill your days with structure and purpose, rather than chaos and defeat. Personally, environment also plays a major role in my consistency. That can mean switching things up! You don’t have to be in a gym, with a trainer, to maximize your workouts and stay consistent. Workout at home, take your workout outside, try a new class, youtube new HIIT workouts, finally give yoga a try. Keep it fun and exciting. What and who we surround ourselves with can positively or negatively impact our consistency. Choose your workout buddies, and accountability partners wisely, friends.
We all know that the myth has been debunked that lifting weights makes you bulky. Lifting weights actually stimulates your muscle (lean body mass), which strengthens, tightens, and tones. Yes, please! Aside from wanting a tone physique, having more lean body mass supports a wide array of things our body needs strength to do when carrying out daily tasks; such as, supporting hormonal and bone health, supporting our core and spine, and my personal favorite, it allows our bodies to literally burn more fat while SITTING. While I love weights, I am a proponent of being able to lift your own body weight first. This is not a race, take the time to educate yourself on proper form and technique before going all out. For this reason, HIIT workouts are my favorite (more on this later).
First, you do not need to go out and buy an entirely new fashionable fitness wardrobe to start working out. Period. But, I do believe there are ways to arm yourself for battle, whether that is your wardrobe, technology, or music.
Your workout gear should make you feel comfortable and confident. Think about what fits, and feels comfortable, depending on what type of workout you are doing. If wearing something cute motivates you to get up and go, by all means friend, I am here cheering you on. I recently discovered Target's athleisure line. Here are some of the items I have my eyes on....and here + here + here. Because, well...Target.
Aside from fashion, it is important to outfit yourself with the proper tools. Track your progress in a notebook, planner, on your phone, or in a journal. Track what is important to you! I change up my workouts every 3 months, or so. I like to track things like strength, speed, and distance.
The next thing I equip myself with is music! How do people workout without music? I recently bought these snazzy little headphones that are perfect for running and working out. They are wireless, and waterproof (so they don’t slip and slide if I sweat…I mean perspire...I mean sparkle). Be sure to check back in, workout playlists are coming soon!
Our bodies need to consistently be refueled, not only with proper nutrition, but with rest. Giving our muscles time to rebuild and strengthen is imperative to any workout regimen. I promise, if you allow yourself to rest, you will notice improvements in energy, recovery time, and quicker physical results. Rest also prevents burnout; keep in mind, its January. We want to keep our fitness goals simple and attainable.
May your workouts be sweaty and purposeful.
Together, lets make this our most radiant year yet!