Another new year, another set of resolutions! Every year, we decide to go to the gym more often, eat better, pay more attention to calories, or get out the running shoes we bought last January and go for a run. And every year, we almost always only keep it up for a few days or maybe a week or two. Many gyms are empty again by the beginning of February and the new running shoes go down to the charity shop as part of the spring cleaning. After all, there’s still some time until the summer.
SO HOW DO I ACTUALLY GET MYSELF TO FULFIL MY NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS?
First and foremost, it’s important not to overdo it. The motivation boost can take you in the wrong direction. As the saying goes, “Rome was not built in a day.” So it is not realistic to try to implement five New Year resolutions in one year simultaneously. So let’s turn that laundry list into a single resolution and do it right. The feeling of having done one thing really well is, of course, much better than doing a bunch of things only half-way, if at all.
IT’S ALWAYS HARD TO GET STARTED, BUT DON’T SKIP THOSE BABY STEPS, PLEASE
Not only are we tempted to make too many New Year’s resolutions, we also tend to try to push ourselves too fast and too hard. Driven by a sense of New Year’s euphoria and a desire to get results as quickly as possible, we often go straight for the deep end, while just getting ourselves back on the training bench and building up a sweat is already hard enough. Less is often more here too. I also need to point out that you don’t always have to join a gym to become physically fitter. As a beginner or if you’re on the road a lot for work, having 3-4 go-to exercises that you can do quickly and simply at home or in the hotel room is a good place to start.
It’s important to keep the exercises as simple as possible so that they require little space or additional equipment while still delivering the best results possible in a limited time. To start, exercising with your own body weight is completely sufficient. And that body weight can be quite something if you decide to put it all on a single joint or muscle.
Drink enough water: drinking lots of water is not just for supermodels. Water does our body good. Since a New Year’s resolution to get fit is not only very exhausting, but also unfamiliar for the body and its muscles, we sweat a lot. While this helps the body cleanse itself from the inside out through the skin, it also means the loss of a lot of fluid and minerals. That’s why it’s all the more important to provide the body with sufficient water. We are deliberately talking about water, plain water, not the all-too-common New Year’s resolution that leads to the squeezing of lemons by the gallon and turning every fruit and vegetable imaginable into smoothies.
There’s nothing wrong with smoothies or lemon water, of course. They certainly make their contribution to our physical well-being, but can also do a number on your gut. So, to get started, it’s best to stick with a good, cold, healthy glass of water.
WHAT YOU EAT MATTERS
Healthy nutrition is important. In fact, this could be a good New Year’s resolution for several years running. If you resolve to do more sport or get fit and healthy for spring, healthy eating is going to come up. What’s important is not to kick off the new year by going on a hunger strike. This will just make the inevitable cravings that much worse.
The main ingredient which belongs in every meal and also in every workout is motivation. So as loud as the fireworks on New Year’s might have been, they didn’t scare away that inner couch potato, who’s just waiting for the right opportunity to take back over.
DO IT FOR YOU BECAUSE YOU ARE WORTH IT
Getting fit and healthy for spring should not be just a resolution at the beginning of the year. Health and physical fitness are essential ingredients for having fun and enjoying life later, even as we age. So please don’t let anyone tell you what resolutions to make, like telling your partner it’d be nice for them to work out more. Of course it would be nice, but the smile on your faces before, during, and after the workout should be much nicer.
Just like a smile on a child’s face, the smile when you cross a finish line or meet a goal is the most beautiful thing there is!
In this sense, work out and stay healthy for YOU!