Reaching your fitness goals can be an uphill battle.
Not only are you trying to reverse your current bad habits physically, you are also trying to turn your negative thinking around. Sometimes, the latter is the hardest part of reaching your fitness goals.
Mental fitness is just as important as physical fitness. In fact, I would argue that without a proper mental turnaround, a physical turnaround is the same as trying to climb an unclimbable hill.
It simply can’t be done.
So in this article, I am going to share the 7 best ways to reach your fitness goals, all from a mental perspective.
- Understand Your Motivation to Be More Fit
This might be the biggest hurdle in turning your level of fitness around. Not understanding your true motivation for wanting to live a healthier and happier life can lead to quick de-motivation and also enable quick-react justification for your current bad behaviors.
Knowing your true desires and being open about them, to yourself and those around you can provide key levels of mental and emotional support that will enable you to more likely reach your goals.
Is your motivation your family? Is it because you are tired of being tired? Are you trying to attract a partner? Is it ego-driven? Being honest with yourself about the root motivation is the building block for achieving your health and fitness goals.
- Start With the End In Mind
The only way to know when you have arrived at your destination, is to know exactly what your destination is. You can’t hit a target if you don’t know what you are aiming for.
Defining your goals does not mean that those goals are set in stone. Goals are meant to drive action, keep us motivated, and create a sense of purpose.
But goals can also be adjusted based on what you learn about yourself and your motivations as you progress through your journey. In many cases, goals get shifted due to knowledge gained and/or motivations change during the transformation journey. Now, this is not to say that goals should be viewed as “flexible”, which can lead to quicker abandonment of your current goals, but knowing your goals can evolve allows for more opportunity to be motivated about where you are headed.
Remember, a goal is meant to keep you moving forward, even if your journey path changes along the way,
- Get the Right Tools to Do the Job
Imagine a repairman trying to fix an appliance, but without any tools. Or a basketball player trying to score a basket, but with no basketball. Or, a hairstylist trying to cut your hair, but with no scissors.
Once you know the goal, knowing the tools you will need to reach your destination become paramount to success. New processes typically require new tools to achieve new results, so knowing what you need to get the job done is key.
Do you have a new goal for eating healthier? Then you will need to invest in new types of food. If you are not drinking enough water, perhaps an electric shaker bottle such as the Voltrx electric shaker bottle will help you drink more water. If you easily get sore, maybe something as simple as a massage gun will help recovery time and keep you moving. Wanting to run more? You may need some running shoes or headbands to keep your feet hitting the pavement every day, comfortably.
- Create a Plan with Repetition Every Day
“An apple a day keeps the doctor away”.
This is a very famous saying that actually has a hidden meaning.
“An apple a day? How boring!”
True, but notice the part that says “keeps the devil away”? This can also mean that, by having a strict plan, every day, there is less room for error. If you wake up and know exactly what you are going to eat for the day, or the types of workout or healthy choices you are going to make, then you are much less likely to make a bad choice, since your decision was already made.
Sometimes, being boring is the best way to stay on track.
- Make “Cheating” a Part of the Plan
One bad day can easily turn into 3 bad days. One day off can easily turn into one week off. One cheat meal can easily turn into a cheat week.
An avalanche starts with something small. When you are working on building a new “you”, and you are still in the process of developing new menstrual and physical habits, moments of failure can often be internally amplified, cause discouragement, and lead to digging a deeper hole.
There is an old saying that “misery loves company”. This means that when things are going bad, or things are not working out the way we expect, we are more likely to add more troubles to our small issue. This is the beginning of the avalanche.
So how can we overcome this? PLAN your off days, Plan your cheat meals. Plan when you are going to allow yourself when and how much to eat or how many days to take off from the gym. This will put you into a mindset of “following the plan” instead of “going off the rails”.
This way, you aren’t breaking the rules by eating too much or staying away from the gym an extra day. It was part of the plan, which will make you see those “failures” now as “part of my success”.
- Be Offended By Yourself
Setting a goal means that you recognize that there is a gap between where you currently are and where you want to be. It’s an acknowledgment that in your current position, you are not satisfied. That you want something different.
You have become offended with yourself, and where you currently are.
The question is, how offended are you, really?
True change is typically brought about only when a person is ready to change when they have reached the tipping point and are unwilling to continue down the same path. When they truly have had enough, and are going to do whatever it takes to advance their position towards one more desired.
- Have People Around You Who Support You
I tell my kids all the time “Your net worth is equal to your network”.
I have taught them from a very early age that our characteristics, habits, thoughts, etc are highly impacted and formed by the people who we surround ourselves with. That humans tend to take on the same lines of thinking like those people whom we are spending most of our time with. We absorb them, whether we want to or not.
When it comes to living a healthy lifestyle and hitting your wellness goals, the people around you can be one of the biggest roadblocks to your success. With over 33% of the American public being obese, there is a high likelihood that many of your family or associates are not health-minded.
In order to succeed and hit your goals, you need some sort of interaction with people who you can talk to, look up to, and feel part of their community. It’s much easier to discuss your fitness goals with others who are like-minded, than with those who are not.
Whether it’s in-person, or even finding similar-minded people on social media platforms such as Instagram or Facebook, find people with similar ideas and goals and use each other as motivation to reach your goals together.
What Do I Do Next?
What is next? Look at yourself and look for opportunities to be better. Do you want to lose weight? Are you wanting to feel better? What about more exercise?
I write on my website often that health and fitness, and your goals, are personal and specific to you. As long as you are honest with yourself as to where you currently are, and where you want to be, there are no wrong answers.
Robert is a Certified Personal Trainer and Certified Nutrition Coach through the National Academy of Sports Medicine and is the founder of Fizzness Shizzness. He encourages and empowers health and fitness lifestyles to those who want to live healthier lifestyles after 30.