The New Year is only a few hours away and you’re probably already thinking about how amazingly healthy, fit and fabulous you are going to be in 2018! Everyone has the right to dream big, right?
Sadly we all know that our end-of-year motivation often fades and that next December 31, you are likely to be thinking about the exact same resolutions.
Living the Monaco Life you are a creature of comfort, which is easier than creating the new habits necessary to make you fitter, healthier and, ultimately, happier.
Willpower is important but there are a few other tricks that can truly affect your chances of success. Here are a few I most commonly use with my clients.
Set an intention, not a resolution.
They may sound similar but they’re not. Here’s why.
Let’s say your New Year’s resolution is to walk the coastal path from Monaco to La Mala every day in 2018. We all know this is not possible every day because you’ll travel, you’ll have unexpected things happen and you might even feel like a rest from time to time. As a resolution, the moment you skip one day you’ll feel like you failed and are likely to give up for the rest of the year. As an intention, walking as often as you can means that even if you miss one day, you won’t feel like a failure and will keep at it over time.
Get inspired but don’t believe everything you read.
There is no “one size fits all” to your health and happiness. It’s great to get inspired by what others do but ultimately you need to find what works for you. This may take some trial and error but you don’t have to fit under any label: paleo, vegan, crossfitter, yogi … you name it. In fact, it’s better if you don’t. It’s by tuning in with your body and following what feels good for YOU that you’ll find what truly works.
Only set intentions that you enjoy.
Don’t like running? Don’t try to run every day! Willpower will get you part of the way but sooner or later you’re going to give up on the things that offer no pleasure.
Try walking instead of running or if you have trouble finding a form of exercise you like, remind yourself of what you truly enjoyed as a kid and get involved with that.
Find a great podcast – Tim Ferriss is one of my favorites – that you only listen to when you go walking, and you’re more likely to actually want to get out and do it. Also, Monaco is lovely early in the morning or at night so find the time that suits you best and just start with a small loop, which brings us to our next point.
Rome wasn’t built in a day.
January is the time of the year when most people work out but it’s also when most people get injured. The key to long term results and sticking with your “intentions” is to be smart and be kind to your body. When you’re in pain or legitimately feeling tired, take a day off sport. If you listen to your body when it whispers, you won’t have to listen to it scream when it gets injured.
No one in his of her right mind works out every day. It’s definitely not something I recommend to my clients as it causes too much stress on the body. Increased stress means increased cortisol, which is a fat storage hormone.
It’s not about having a “perfect” January, it’s about making it through to December and actually feeling good in the skin you’re in. Have the mindset of a marathon runner, not that of a sprinter.
Your plan will change across the year and that’s okay.
Don’t listen to the voice in your head. It loves comfort and is an expert at talking you into staying in bed even though you know you should be going for that morning stroll. Forget arguing with the voice in your head, just thank it for its kind consideration and do the opposite of what it tells you – get out of bed, go for that walk and start making new habits for yourself. That voice will accommodate in due course, it’s only a matter of time.
Seek improvement, not perfection.
Celebrate the small victories and make a big deal out of the progress you make. Even if you haven’t been “perfect”, it’s the improvements that count. The mindset you adopt on your journey in 2018 is more important than the destination.
Maddy is the Founder of Nutrition For Naughty People, aimed at helping individuals find a better balance between the things that keep them healthy and the things that make them happy! Any questions? firstname.lastname@example.org.
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