How to stick to a New Year’s Resolution

Every year we all make New Year’s Resolutions but according to a study, only 8% of people stick to them. If you are making a resolution this year, here are some ways you can make sure you achieve them.

 Be realistic

Set goals and time frames that are realistic to achieve. If you would like to lose 4 stone, don’t expect to achieve it in 4-weeks. Think about the time it took to gain the weight, if you gained weight over 5 years you can’t expect to lose it overnight. How much progress you want to make will dictate how long it will take.

Break your overall goal into smaller milestones to make you feel proud when you achieve your first pound or stone loss. This will help you to stick at it as you are seeing small results regularly.


Establish why

This may sound obvious, but lots of people try to get fitter without a real reason why they are doing it, this means you are less likely to stick at it.

Establish why you have chosen your resolution; whatever it is you chose. Once you know why you want to achieve it you will be more motivated to act on it.

Plan and Prepare

Failing to prepare is preparing to fail. The main reason people don’t stick to a new year’s resolution is because they don’t plan. In the Army they refer to is as

“Proper Planning and Preparation Prevents P**s Poor Performance”

Here are some examples of ways that you can plan depending on your resolution:

“I want to stop eating biscuits
Don’t buy them, if you don’t have them in the house you can’t eat them. Find a healthier alternative to have in place when you would usually eat a biscuit.

“I want to start running in the morning in the mornings
Make sure you prepare the day before, get an early night, leave your running kit out ready and set yourself goals and targets.

“I need to eat better on the go”
Prepare food to take with you, this will help you to stop grabbing unhealthy and pre made foods from the shop.

Set targets

Setting a goal is so important. Depending on the goal you might want to break it up so that you can feel a sense of an achievement as you work towards the big goal. For example, if your goal is to run a marathon then you will need to first achieve a mile, 5 miles, 10 miles and so on. Plan a range of events or dates when you will enter a 10k or a 15k so you have a clear date to work towards.

Entering an event is a great way to motivate yourself, you have a clear date and goal to achieve. Ultra Events organise a range of events which give you 8 weeks of free training and you compete at the end of that training, it is a great way to set a target.

Set timescales

Give yourself a clear timescale. It’s all well and good to have a target, but if you say ‘I want to run 10k’ with no timescale you are setting yourself up to fail. Enter a race or give yourself a clear date.

Reward yourself

You are working hard to achieve your new year’s resolution so reward yourself when you do well. This doesn’t mean that if you eat well Mon- Fri that you should reward yourself on Sat and Sun by eating 10,000 calories.

Do something positive, if you run your first 5k buy something for yourself or go out with the family for the day. It’s important not to undo your hard work by doing something counterproductive.

If you fall off, you can get back on

It’s normal to have a lapse, everyone does it. The important thing to remember is that it is just a lapse, you haven’t ruined your goal because you ‘ate a chocolate bar’. Don’t beat yourself up, just get yourself back on track. Just give it your absolute best and stick to it.

If your new years resolution is to become fit and heathy you should see it as a long term commitment so missing the odd day or eating something you shouldn’t is not the end of the world.

Commit yourself

If you want to achieve anything then you need to take action. Set your goals, make it easy by planning and preparing, set yourself targets and timescales to go with them. When you achieve targets or mini targets reward yourself and remember that if you fall off you can get straight back on it.

Look at the above pointers as strategies or tools to help you get healthier and do them, you are in charge of your future.