How to reach your fitness goals
We all know physical fitness can lead to health, longevity and happiness – but sometimes it’s the getting out there and doing it that we find the hardest.
Success and failure are divided by a thin line. You can stay on the right side of it by making the right decisions. Here are some top tips for forcing yourself to get fit:
1. Set goals and be specific about it
Don’t just say ‘I want to get fitter’ – that is too vague and you are likely to lose track, get bored and stray back to your old habits.
Make your fitness goals specific and realistic by seeing what you are capable of now, and setting a higher target for a time in the future. For example, if you can run a mile without stopping now, make it your target to run two miles without stopping in four weeks time. Run a little bit further every day and eventually you will reach your target – probably without even realising it.
2. Do not over-train
A common mistake is training too hard too soon. Make sure what you’re aiming for is attainable. Fitness happens over time and if you push your body too hard you risk injury. Once you have an injury, you could be out of the game for days, weeks or even months – putting you right back where you started.
3. Track your progress
Download a fitness tracker app or keep it simple with an exercise diary. Document what you do, in what time and what intensity – then you can see how you change over time. Seeing improvements will motivate you to carry on. Sometimes you might feel like you’re plateauing or failing but if you look at your exercise diary, you might find that you’re not.
Add variety to your training programme. Even if your goal is in running, try other activities to improve different aspects of your fitness. Use resistance weights to boost your leg strength, try swimming to focus your breathing, and yoga to improve your flexibility.
5. Visualise your success
Imagine reaching your goal. See yourself doing it – reaching the finish line, looking in the mirror and seeing your weight loss, or your muscle definition; feeling the improvement to your health. Focus on that image and make it your driving force. Whenever you feel like staying on the sofa instead of getting out there and working hard, imagine that you never reach that goal and think about how you’d feel.
Life coaching can impart self-motivation skills and help clients develop plans to reach their goals. Find out more by visiting our Health page.
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