There is no denying that improving your health can take a lot of effort, organization, planning and dedication. However, there are ways to make the change easier for yourself by putting plans in place early to avoid setbacks later. As many of you have probably heard, changes in body composition and health are generally considered 80% diet and 20% exercise; however, there really needs to be a percentage allocated to mindset, goal setting and a psychological component.
All aspects of these are essential to consider, but we cannot deny that nutrition really is a key player in changing your shape and health, and in doing so you need to put plans in place to ditch the junk.
You have to want it!
Firstly, you have to want to change! You can read all the self-help articles, enlist as many people as you like, but ultimately, if you have no desire deep down to want to change, it is unlikely to happen! And certainly not easily… The choice and the power to make it happen is ultimately yours.
If you are committed to change it is necessary to put some plans in place to set yourself up for success. Initially, if possible, gain the support of your family and friends that surround you and let them know you want to make a positive change in your health. You will be much more successful if you have the support from those around you.
The next step is to set an achievable goal. Research suggests that you are much more likely to achieve your goal if you stick to just one. The more goals you start setting yourself, the harder it is to focus on and drive for your goal. Be prepared to take the time to change and work on goals you can achieve. For example, you may want to start walking most days of the week, or cut out soda. Set a long term goal, but then break it down into daily and weekly goals that you can achieve – think of them as small pieces in the puzzle, taking one step at a time.
The Fast Track
To speed up your results, it can be worth enlisting the help of health professionals who can monitor you and make suggestions that are best suited to your goals and needs. This may be through the incorporation of a Physical Therapist, Personal Trainer, Dietician, Nutritionist and your Doctor. If you do have any injuries or medical conditions it is important to speak and work with your doctor to ensure you are aware of any implications with changing your lifestyle. They may refer you to an Accredited Exercise Physiologist for specialized help.
Mindset is a vast part of success as well, and this can often be your undoing in changing your health when you start to doubt yourself, lose motivation or start focusing on negative thoughts. Staying positive and surrounding yourself with positive affirmations, supportive people and focusing on your goals can certainly assist with your success rate.
To help keep a positive mindset, keeping a gratitude journal can be unbelievably beneficial! Show appreciation of your efforts and progress through this journey of change. Keep a record of your successes and what you are grateful for obtaining, learning and personal growth during this time.
Reflecting and expressing gratitude on paper is a terrific way to remind you of the good that comes when trying to better yourself. Everyone is likely to fall off the horse in some way and having a gratitude journal is an excellent tool to remind yourself as to why you wanted to undergo change, and restore a positive mindset within yourself.
Similarly, commenting on what didn’t go so well or what produces stress is undeniably valuable as you can use it to learn how you could deal with the same situations better and plan how to better deal with it in the future if it were to occur again.
This reflection will not only show you where you have come from but also help shape goals and aspirations of where you want to be in the future!
Lastly, be kind to yourself! Don’t beat yourself up if you have a bad day, miss a workout, or overeat! That is life, no one is perfect. Refocus on your goals and continue on. Being down on yourself will only produce negativity, which is not beneficial to your overall outcome.
By utilizing some of these strategies, you can help the journey be a lot smoother and your chances of success a lot higher. That doesn’t mean it will be easy, but it will be worth it!