It is January. It is inevitable that you will be bombarded in your emails and on social media with fitness and nutrition plans galore which will ‘transform you’.
But are any of them actually the right fit for what you want to achieve?
Creating a fitness goal is very subjective and personal, so there are aspects you need to think about which I go into below. There is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to fitness and nutrition, it is all dependent on your body type, height, overall structure and lifestyle.
At this time of year a lot of content in the media is about weight loss or fat loss, but that isn’t necessarily everyone’s goal; so don’t be afraid to do something different to what you see circulating online.
Creating a realistic and attainable goal is the first step. What exactly is it you want to do? Do you want to lose fat? Do you want to build your upper body? Have you signed up to run a half marathon?
Write down your goal/s and think about what you need to do in order to get there. This is when talking to a professional at your local gym can be handy as they can point you in the right direction or to a trained nutritionist.
Create a plan of action, like stepping stones, to get you to where you want to be.
DON’T JUST COPY EVERYONE ELSE
As I mentioned above, you don’t need to copy what you are seeing on Instagram to also see results. Different goals require a different journey, and accepting this is important. Some celebrities and online influencers post their macros and workout regimes on social media which is totally fine, but to try and follow someone else’s food plan can be damaging as we all need something different depending on details such as height and activity levels. Find out what will work for your body and your goals through research or a professional.
CHOOSE A TIME FRAME
Is there a time frame on your goal? When I ran the half marathon I had twelve weeks to train so I had to factor that into my training plan. Time frames work for some, for others they don’t. The worst thing to do is create a deadline and for it to add stress to your life – no one needs that. Maybe your goal is a work in progress and you want to see where it goes, which is totally fine too. Life is not a race and you can work at whichever speed you wish.
TALK TO A PROFESSIONAL
If you really want some dependable advice you should look to speak to a sports/fitness/nutritional expert as they will be qualified to create a plan for you completely customised for your body.
BUY A JOURNAL TO RECORD PROGRESS
For me, writing down my goals on paper makes me feel more accountable and also makes it easier to refer back to.
It is also a great way to record your progress. Progress is NOT just about weight loss. Progress can include how much weight you’ve lifted and for how many reps, how many kms you managed to run and in what time. I am personally not a big fan of weighing myself so I tend to measure certain parts of my body – upper arms/waist/hips/thighs – and record these weekly to see how my body is changing.
FIND OUT WHAT YOU ENJOY
Experimenting is the fun part of changing up your lifestyle. In the kitchen try new ingredients and meals, try to create everything from scratch and learn new skills along the way. In terms of fitness try some fitness classes and see what you do or don’t enjoy – you will never know until you try!
PATIENCE & CONSISTENCY
Remember not to be hard on yourself if you don’t seem to make progress as quickly as you hoped. Even by just moving more you are paving the way to being healthier and the progress will come if there is consistency and patience. It is better for your health to work at a slower and safer speed then to go on a crash diet which will of course give you quicker results but it will be less attainable to keep up.
I hope this has helped you on your journey in some way. If you have any other tips please feel free to leave them in the comments!