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It’s a new year, and that means a fresh start that we’ve all been craving post-2020. After a year that involved weeks (or months) of quarantine, it’s the perfect time to start focusing on health and fitness again.
Each week for 12 weeks, we’ll be discussing a different topic to kickstart your 2021 health and fitness journey. These topics range from workout balance, to meal prepping tips, to this week’s focus on setting goals.
At the end of the 12 weeks, you’ll be feeling fit, fresh and ready for the year ahead.
Welcome to the Tanita 12 Week Challenge - it’s time to focus on you!
Starting a new health or fitness routine without a goal is like travelling without a map - you might get there eventually but it’s easy to get lost along the way.
Think about what you want to achieve over the next 12 weeks.
Do you want to lose weight? Gain muscle? Tone up? Maybe you just want to increase your general fitness and not be out of breath as much?
Once you know where you want to be, it’s time to start thinking about how you want to get there.
Right now, your end goal might seem really far away, so it’s important to set some smaller goals as well, especially early on.
These goals can be REALLY small too.
Maybe you want to make sure you’re getting up at 6am every day to give you enough time to exercise before work. Maybe you want to just make it to the gym at least twice in the first week. Maybe it’s as simple as swapping an unhealthy snack for a piece of fruit.
It doesn’t matter what these small goals are to begin with, they just need to be something achievable.
The more of these smaller goals you can achieve, the more you’ll be able to motivate yourself to keep going. As you achieve them, you can set more difficult goals for yourself - instead of getting to the gym twice a week, you might be feeling up to three sessions. You could be ready to increase the weights you’re using, or speed up the treadmill a bit more.
As you keep hitting more and more difficult milestones, your end goal will look a lot closer and attainable every day.
Measuring your goal progress is extremely important, but figuring out how to measure your progress accurately will depend on your fitness goal.
If you’re looking to lose weight, then a set of digital bathroom scales will do the trick - but if you’re looking to add muscle or tone your body, a set of bathroom scales won’t give you all the information you need to track your progress.
A body composition monitor measures not only your weight, but can also accurately measure your body fat percentage, muscle mass & quality, bone mass and even your total body water percentage. Some of these even connect with the Tanita app, allowing you to see and track your progress from your smartphone - how easy is that!
Most people think that getting results is about going as hard as you can all the time, but the truth is, consistency is far more important than intensity.
It can be exciting starting a new fitness routine or challenge, but that excitement fades quickly if you injure yourself straight away and need a week to recover.
Staying consistent - even if that means lowering the intensity - is more beneficial in the long run: it reduces the risk of injury (especially if you haven’t exercised in a while) and allows you to settle into a regular routine that works best for you.
It cannot be overstated just how important preparation is for reaching your goals.
When it comes to starting a new fitness routine or health habit, we have a tendency to look for excuses not to go out and exercise, and do something easier instead.
Making sure you’re prepared ahead of time means reducing as much friction as possible, and removing excuses before they pop up. If your gym bag is already packed the night before, you can’t use the excuse of “I didn’t have time to pack it this morning”. If you’ve prepared your healthy lunches ahead of time, you won’t feel the need to grab something unhealthy from the nearest food court.
Practice doesn’t make perfect - preparation does!
It’s easy to fall back into your regular habits unless you have a strong level of accountability built in for yourself. This is super important, especially in the first few weeks when your routine might start to slip or you feel like giving up entirely.
There are a few ways to do this:
It’s not about avoiding embarrassment if you fail, it’s about building a support system around you to keep you going.
This is everything you need to get started on your new fitness journey.
Now that you’ve set your goals it’s time to start working on them! Good luck for week 1 - remember to check in each week as we continue to post helpful articles to keep you going, or follow Tanita Australia on social media.
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