This time of year is all about “new” right?
It can certainly be overwhelming to try to live up to and tackle all of the new at once. John and I enjoy going to the gym most evenings and of course we have seen the typical increase in attendance and our regular machines being more crowded by new faces there. Now, I applaud people for wanting to make a change and improve their fitness, for trying something new, and being in the gym after a long day at work. But I always find the cycle of starting a new habit, whether it be food and fitness related or not, trying it for a few weeks, then quitting, quite fascinating. Everyone feels renewed and invigorated for a few weeks at this time of year and then all of a sudden, those efforts fade and normal routines and habits creep back in. Why is that?
As a dietitian, I believe that part of my job is not only to educate folks on nutrition but also to motivate them to continue to make the changes they want to until they form new habits that are sustainable and become their new routine and way of doing things. I always set a few goals with clients at each session. And then follow-up accordingly. And I believe this is the piece that answers the why. Following-up doesn’t mean perfection in hitting the gym or in food choices. Following-up creates an attainable and accountable moment for someone to re-assess their goals and efforts, and to consciously decide what is working and what is not working for them. And it creates a time to set new goals as others are achieved.
So find your follow-up. Whether it is with a friend or a family member or a credentialed and licensed professional, find someone to talk to about your goals and struggles and how you can stay dedicated to what matters to you. You got this!