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Posted By Sport & Health on Dec 31, 2020 9:37:03 AM

“Dear self,

 

This is the year that WE MAKE IT HAPPEN! On the ladder of life, the top is where we belong!

 

So, from here on out, I promise to commit to the following:

 

  • Meal prep 7 days a week
  • Workout 2x’s daily
  • Run the Marine Core Marathon
  • Meditate daily
  • Replace Netflix with Yoga
  • Give up sugar
  • Give up drinking
  • Give up pasta (gosh, I love pasta!)

 

 

We got this!!!”

 

Sound familiar?

 

How many times have we made resolution after resolution only to realize that after about 30 days of trying to stick to everything on our list we find ourselves right back where we were before the new year started?

 

While it’s great to have ambition, we often forget that when setting new goals, we are going toe to toe with one of the largest adversaries known to man-our own brains.

 

Have you ever wondered why getting new habits to stick are so hard and why breaking old habits seem to be even harder? It’s because good old Mother Nature has hard wired that wonderful lump of flesh in between our ears to primarily focus on survival (thanks evolution!) and when it comes to survival, at least according to the lizard part of your brain, stopping anything you’ve become accustomed to and/or doing anything new can come with a risk.

 

This was a great benefit to us back during our hunter/gatherer days when venturing into new territory could result in being the nearest mountain lion’s lunch, but in the modern world this old survival tactic is, well…old and no longer serves us! But it’s so lodged into our psychology that it’s the number one reason why so many people struggle to accomplish their fitness goals when the calendar hits January 1.

 

So, what’s the new you, eager to have a kick ass year, supposed to do?!?

 

We have a solution, and while it may not align with all the memes you’ve pinned to your 2021 Pinterest board it’s backed up by good old science so it’s more likely to work for you.

 

Start with ONE goal that you can easily incorporate into your current lifestyle.

 

That’s right… Just…One…Goal.

 

 

By starting with only one goal that you can easily incorporate into your existing routine you immediately increase your rate success because it’s easier for the brain to make small changes over time than to drastically rearrange the routines it assumes are necessary for your survival.

 

Let’s say your goal is to lose 30lbs by the start of Spring. It’s much easier for your brain to commit to getting in one hour of movement five days a week with the help of a personal trainer than it is to immediately start counting every macro, give up all of your favorite foods, and workout more than you ever have in your life. Or, maybe you’re already used to working out daily, but night snacking has always been a struggle for you-you’re more likely to have success if you set a goal to increase your daily water intake than you are if you set a goal to count every macro AND completely rid yourself of all your favorite snacks.

 

Again, it all goes back to the lizard brain and survival.

 

Even though you know those habits of yours are no benefit to your health and counterproductive to your goals, the lizard brain is so used to receiving the stimulation that it believes that you need it in order to survive. As soon as you abruptly remove said stimulation your mind goes into survival mode and starts screaming at you from the depths of your soul to immediately go to the store and get those cookies NOW, NOW, NOW!!! Its why sugar cravings are so strong and why trying to create a bunch of new habits at once simply doesn’t work.

 

On the other hand, if you set just one goal say, to increase your daily water intake, you’ll feel fuller throughout the day while nourishing your body with the hydration it needs and as a result, you’ll be less likely to reach for those cookies at the end of the night.

 

And if you do reach for those cookies anyway?

 

It’s Okay!

 

 

 

 

Focus on moderation instead of elimination and your brain won’t associate the idea of getting healthy with taking you away from what it “thinks” you need for your survival.

 

 

 

We get it, starting with just one goal doesn’t seem as meme worthy as a laundry list of new To Do’s to check off every day, but it’s proven to work much better and, once your new routine becomes a hard-wired habit, you can always add new ones to help you achieve your goal quicker.

 

To further ensure that you crush it this year, we also suggest you write your goal down, along with the action item you’ll use to achieve it and review it daily. Studies show that you’re 42% more likely to achieve your goal if you physically write it down so grab a pen and paper and send that awesome intention into the universe baby!

 

Finally, remember to be patient and only compete with yourself.  You will encounter setbacks, you’ll have days where you aren’t able to lift as much as you did the week before, and you’re going to have moments when you want to give up and it’s okay. The tortoise beat hair because it focused on getting to the finish line no matter how long it took, it wasn’t concerned with the speed that his competitor was moving at.

 

But if you want a slight edge we can help!

 

With the world’s best trainers, programs, and fitness classes we’ve helped thousands of people in our fitness family achieve their goals year after year.

 

Give us a call today and your new you will thank you come this time next year!

 

 

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