Health and Fitness Goals for the New Year – Take Control in 2020
This article about making and keeping health and fitness goals was written by Stodden Physical Therapy
With the start of each new year, setting health and fitness goals is a common (and fantastic) resolution to make! Surprisingly, it’s not just the general population that makes resolutions like these – even the health and fitness pros have to make changes with the beginning of a new year, too.
Common resolutions for people to make are typically focused on improving their lives in very specific ways. These include:
- Losing or maintaining weight
- Changing your diet
- Establishing healthier routines, like going to sleep earlier or drinking more water
- Making it to the gym more often… or starting to go
- Taking better control of both physical and mental health
What to know about health and fitness goals
Everyone has to start somewhere, so make sure that you choose to begin trying to reach your goals from a place that promotes success. This means being realistic with your desires, and not simply hoping for results overnight. The things that people want and need for themselves are always going to be different. This means that even if you’ve found a great program outline online or have listened to friends and family members talk about the things that they did to make health improvements, it may not be exactly right for you.
Now that it’s been a few weeks, it’s time to take stock of your situation. If you’re still on track with your health and fitness resolutions, great job. However, if you’ve found yourself struggling, know you’re not the only one in this situation, and try again tomorrow. Don’t throw in the towel or stop using that fancy new gadget that you bought after the holidays just because of a few bad days. Remind yourself of why you started, and get back into it.
Losing weight and getting in shape
For many, starting this health and fitness journey will start with exercise or recovering from an injury. If you’re getting back into exercising, start slow (light resistance or bodyweight resistance exercises would be a great way to begin) to make sure you’re not too sore and able to exercise on consecutive days. If you’re recovering from an injury, take the first step to schedule your physical therapy appointment and then be compliant and go 2-3 times/week! Establishing consistency over the first few weeks is the hardest part, but eventually, it’ll become a part of your routine and you’ll see the results you’re looking for physically, psychologically, and emotionally. Start slow, and set SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and with a timeline) goals both for the short term and long term.
Using the SMART scale to make health and fitness goal progress
It may seem like this SMART scale is only applicable to certain types of goals, but the truth is that it can be helpful for people at all stages of their fitness journey.
When establishing a timeline, you’ll need to think about different goals and what the process will be. For example, you’ll need to decide how you’d like to change your diet, or how many times a week you want to exercise or attend physical therapy before you actually begin. Taking things step by step – but understanding that there can be multiple steps or aspects of the routine done simultaneously is important. This is where the ‘mini goals’ portion becomes important to think about; even doing small things like meeting a weekly water intake goal or going to the gym a specific amount of times for a month straight are cause for celebration. This is proof that you’re committed to meeting your goals and using 2020 as a chance to succeed.
For many, it’s easy to get discouraged as time passes for a variety of reasons. Maybe you’re not seeing the progress you’d like to, or maybe you feel as if you could be doing more. Whatever the case may be, many people don’t fail in their goals due to lack of motivation – they choose to stop their progress because they’re trying to do too much, too quickly and it’s showing results that they aren’t prepared for.
If you find yourself struggling with pain/soreness, exercise progression, or a nagging injury that is not going away as you’re on your way to making your New Year’s resolution a reality, a physical therapy provider, such as Stodden PT is here to help. Many physical therapy clinics are offering FREE INJURY SCREENS through February to keep you on track.
Sure, it’s possible to make these changes on your own – people do this every day. Even small things can add up over time, but there’s nothing wrong with seeking out the help of professionals like those mentioned above in order to ensure that not only are your chances for success increased but that you’re not doing anything that could potentially harm your body. Athletic or personal trainers, physical therapists, nutritionists… they’re all available to help out when you need them, you’ll just need to look for the right team. You can find a local physical therapy clinic and book your appointment today by using the BetterPT physical therapy clinic locator, or if you’re on the go, choosing to download the BetterPT app is a great alternative.
Even though January is more than half over, there’s still plenty of time to make changes and get 2020 off to a great start!
Stodden Physical Therapy is privately owned and operated by Mike Stodden PT, with locations in Elkhorn, Bennington and Gretna, Nebraska. Stodden Physical Therapy’s slogan is “Get Back Into The Game, Get Back Into Life”, and they want to help you return to Your Life whether that includes sports or simply participating in everyday activities.