Every new year, a lot of us make resolutions and set fitness goals, and the most common is to get in shape. We convince ourselves that we can easily achieve this goal by end of the year. We get a new gym membership and start going hard at the gym especially during the first few weeks in January. This is also the time gyms are packed all across America with other fitness enthusiasts who made the same resolution to get in shape. But towards the end of February and early March, the lines to the treadmills will have dwindled and there are lots of available bikes in the cycling class.

Why do you think people give up on their fitness goals so early in the New Year? Perhaps it’s because, many of us do not take New Year’s resolutions very seriously. Some of us actually think it’s a joke, people break every single one before the year is over. Or maybe because we finally realize we don’t have the money or the resources to achieve a revenge body like Khloe Kardashian. If you plan to take your fitness goals very seriously this year then continue reading because this post will reveal very simple things you can do to stick to them.

Set realistic goals

It doesn’t make sense to set a goal to work out 5 times a week when you haven’t worked out for months or even years, you will only be setting yourself up for failure. It makes a better sense to set a goal to work out at least 2-3 times a week so you can get used to the feeling of working out. I’m no stranger to working out but I’m very bad when it comes to consistency. Even while planning my wedding last year, I thought I would take my fitness goal extremely serious so that on my wedding day I will be this fit bride that everyone will envy. My goal was to workout everyday after my 9-5 and then on weekends. This was not a realistic goal because most days I get off work very late and tired, and most weekends I just want to rest and catch up on sleep. So, it was no surprise that I didn’t achieve my fitness goal before my wedding. I thank God though that my wedding dress, which didn’t require any adjustments when I first wore it in April, it fitted me like a glove, still didn’t require any adjustments when I wore it again in November on my wedding day. But this new year, I’m setting a realistic goal – to workout at least twice every week after work (I plan to not work late on workout day) and then once every weekend preferably on Saturdays, that’s when my husband and I are both free to workout together.

Schedule your workout

Just like we schedule doctor’s appointments by putting them on our calendar so we don’t forget, we should also put our workout schedule on the calendar. Choose how many times a week you will like to workout and decide on the time of day you prefer. If you want to workout every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 6:30 pm then put that on your calendar and set a reminder. This will force you to hold yourself accountable and you will be less likely to cancel. I set a goal to workout every Tuesday and Thursday evening after work and every Saturday morning. And to hold myself accountable, I entered the schedule on my calendar and set a reminder so I can never claim I forgot to workout.

Mix it up

Avoid doing the same routine every time you workout. It’s good to mix things up and switch up your routines to keep things interesting so you don’t get bored and then risk losing your enthusiasm. If you are working out three days a week, you can do two days of weight training and one day of cardio. You can even add yoga, swimming, or cycling to your routine.

Keep a workout log

Thanks to smartphones, you don’t even have to bring a book with you to the gym, you can easily log your workout on your phone. Doing this will help you keep track of your routines, properly plan your next sessions based on your previous ones, and be able to measure your performance. Keeping a log will show you evidence of your improvements since you started working out and it will help motivate you to keep going hard and never giving up.

Find a workout partner

On days you don’t feel like working out, a partner is the one to remind you why you started this journey in the first place. It’s good to hold yourself accountable but it’s also helpful to have someone who holds you accountable too. A partner will encourage you and even help you with some routines you can’t do alone. I rarely want to workout on Saturdays but my husband is always there to support and encourage me to come to the gym with him.

Create a weekly meal plan

It really doesn’t make much sense to set a new fitness goal without making some changes to your diet. Some people have mastered the art of meal plans and it has tremendously helped them in achieving their fitness goals. I am still a learner and just taking it one step at a time. It gets tricky when you have a husband who wants to finish everything you cook in one day. However, a meal plan will keep you on track and you will rarely deviate from the meals you have planned to eat for the week. For more help on how to create your own weekly meal plan, you should check out The Kitchn and Choose My Plate.

What are your fitness goals this year and what plans have you put in place in order to achieve them? Please share things you have done or plan to do to stick to your fitness goals. Share them in the comment section below or tweet me @Linda_LMExpose