A Letter To Everyone Tempted To Quit Their 2018 Fitness Goals Already

Dear Unmotivated Person,

I know that you’ve stopped taking progress pics lately. Maybe they’re just not where you want them to be (read: you’re not where you want to be), or maybe your followers finally spoke up that they didn’t care about your fitspiration as much as you did. I get it, that can be depressing. But that’s no reason to give up on your fitness goals.

Getting fit is by far the most popular New Year’s resolution. We care about getting fit and healthy more than we care about living life to the fullest. It would seem that if we really cared about it that much, it’d be easier to do. But the fact is that 73 percent of people give up on their fitness goals. And right about now, you’re pretty tempted to be one of them.

But think about everything you overcame! You’ve already started. Alright, maybe you weren’t as scrupulous as you supposed to be, but it was your friend’s birthday weekend/baby shower/graduation party/any-excuse-to-eat-chips-please. But if you’ve made it until now, and you’ve even been keeping even kinda consistent, now is not the time to cave!  You can keep going!

 

Tip #1: Create a Plan for Life

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Okay, I know that sounds scary. Dieting for life? Who could ever dream up that kind of hell?

But I don’t mean crash diet for life. I mean you need to understand that if you want real change, you have to make a real change in your life. Instead of some crazy juice craze, commit to smaller compromises. Walk more, eat more veggies, stop eating french fries with every meal. You won’t see dramatic change quickly, but it is more sustainable.

Doing this prevents you from yo-yo dieting, which means you won’t have to crash diet ever again. Look at it from that perspective.

Secondly, this enables you to stay your goal fitness level for the rest of your life. Many people have this idea that if they could just lose/add those last 10 pounds, then they could go back to their normal routine. That just isn’t true. The maintenance needs of your body change as you increase muscle mass or lose weight, and your lifelong diet needs to reflect that.

 

Tip #2: Use Technology!
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You don’t have the time or energy to keep track of every calorie ingested or expended. I know I don’t. And if you’re relying on a typical calorie journal, it can get tedious very quickly. Plus, who just knows off the top of their head how many calories a slice of cheese has in it? If you do, I’m sorry.

At least half us have a health app on our phone now anyway. We just have to be sure to use the right ones! Some people get motivated by goals and golden stars; other people want a large library of nutrition information. Don’t be afraid to play around and look for what works for you.

My favorites are the ones where some famous Olympian athlete interrupts your music to give you a pep talk. They let you know that you’re halfway there, or that you’ve beat your record. Even on the days where I don’t have enough energy to push through my workout, they’ve got something motivational to say. But I’m a sucker for praise.

 

Tip #3: Change What Isn’t Working

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This might sound obvious, but so many people get tunnel vision when it comes to completing a goal. They tell themselves that they’re going to run everyday before work, and when they hit the snooze button on the Monday before work, they call the whole thing a failure. But it doesn’t have to be like that! Instead, maybe run after work or during your lunch break. There are ways to become a morning person, but be prepared for an uphill battle.

Some people might even get hurt — that’s not unusual if you’re suddenly upping your fitness level by 10000000%. Work out another muscle group, and make sure to RICE it. I mean, I’m not a doctor, but RICE is never a bad idea with an injury. I think. Just don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Look, I know this already got preachy. The point of all of this, though, is so that you don’t have to make this exact same resolution come 2019. Save yourself some time and follow three simple tips. You already did the hard thing — you made it this far. Now keep going.

Dayton Uttinger

Dayton socializes for a living and writes for fun. Her rarely relevant degree gives her experience in political science, writing, Spanish, rugby, theater, coding, and spreading herself too thin. She will forever be a prisoner of her family’s business, doomed to inherit responsibility despite frequent existential protests.

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