Goal Setting for the New YearPosted: December 22, 2014 in Getting Active by Craig Primack MD FACP
When making resolutions for the New Year, many people set goals that are so lofty and broad, that come February, they are long forgotten or the enthusiasm in them wanes. Rather than making vague resolutions this year to exercise more or commit to a healthy lifestyle, set a more specific goal to get in physical activity every day. It doesn’t matter so much about the type of physical activity you do, but the fact that you commit to doing some sort of physical activity every day as a goal.
Here are four tips to help you set goals for getting in physical activity every day this New Year.
- Join a class. Whether it is a dance, bowling, martial arts, Tai Chi, aerobics, water aerobics, or crossfit class, you’ll have a set time in your daily schedule that you commit to. To prevent boredom, mix up your physical activity classes, including participating in ones that you go to only and ones that you share with your spouse and/or children.
- Hire a personal trainer. Whether your personal trainer comes to your home or you meet him or her at a fitness center, a personal trainer can be a great motivator. Not only will you get one-on-one attention for your weight loss goals, but also your personal trainer can challenge you once your hit a plateau.
- Join a gym. If you’re not ready to hire a personal trainer, at least consider joining a gym. Today’s gym memberships are affordable, and you may meet someone at the gym who can become your workout buddy. This can help you stick to your exercise and weight loss goals past January.
- Exercise in short intervals. While it is best if you can get in 60 minutes of exercise per day, today’s busy lifestyle of most individuals makes that an unrealistic goal. Instead, work in 10 to 15 minute exercise sessions throughout your day. For example, spend 15 minutes in the morning on the treadmill, then take 15 minutes to walk at lunch. By breaking your daily exercise goals up into shorter sessions, you’ll get in your desired physical activity without it being too much of a burden on your busy schedule.
Remember, it is important to celebrate your smaller accomplishments, as it helps you to stay committed and make forward progress to a larger goal. So be sure to break big goals into smaller goals, and then create incremental action steps that you can act on immediately. Then, reward yourself as you achieve them.