Positive Path Recommended Reading

Sticking to it
By Matt Church

Unfortunately, for those whose New Year resolution was to eat right and exercise on New Year's Day, statistics show that more than 91 percent will fall off the wagon after just 17 days! (BW HealthWire) You planned that you were going to walk every day but compelling television kept you on the couch. You vowed to cut out fat foods but your mother-in-law's fruit mince pies just can't be allowed to sit. All good reasons and after all doesn't everyone break New Year's resolutions. You shrug it off Right? 

So why can't we seem to stick to lifestyle goals? 

We start diets on Monday and break them by Friday. We make new years resolutions only to be disappointed by our apparent lack of will power before the first month of the New Year is out. The key to meaningful change is to avoid making your goals unrealistic, and the key to remaining happy while you bring about change is to build up small success points along the way. Here are some tips to keep in mind the next time you look to make a change in your lifestyle. 

Understand that the Law of Effort and Reward applies. There are no quick fixes. I don't care how many times you have watched an advertisement on late night TV those hip slapping belly busting diets and "fabbo abbo" contraptions just don't work. The minute you take the easy way out, your chances of achieving your goal diminish significantly. You know what you have to do - walk a lot and don't eat fat. It is that simple - it's just not easy. 

It took you a while to get into your dissatisfied state so it will take a while to get out of it. If it took 5 years to get over weight it will take you about 1 year to get back into shape. Not 17 days. Remember that the Law of Erosion is the key to successful weight loss and fitness gain. It is the continuos daily efforts that make the difference in your results not the incredible day where you ran 15 kilometres and ate like a Spartan soldier. You need to plan a program that you can maintain over the long term. A good period to determine your level of commitment for is 100 days. Long enough to get results yet short enough to see an end in sight. If you average above 70% being good, that is 70 out of 100 days, then you are well on track to achieving maintainable results. 

The time for action is now. You will procrastinate if you have not spent the time deciding exactly what you want to achieve. Be specific with your plan. I like to 'chunk' down my 100 days into 10-day challenges. The focus of the ten days may be to walk every day or perhaps have a desert every other day. So start off simply by cutting out this article, perhaps stick it into your new exercise journal (a scrap book) every day write down what you eat, think and do. Go for a walk right now. Put a bag of exercise clothes into the car so that you can use them tomorrow. Cut up a fruit salad and keep it in the fridge as a snack. Go buy a low fat cookbook. Lay on the floor and do some sit ups (take it easy if you have a bad back) start off small and bit by bit you will begin to build 'results momentum' Each little success or result will push you onto your next effort. 

You will also be more likely to 'stick with it' if you have some measure for your success. If you want to lose fat off your belly then choose an old belt that becomes your fitness test. Each notch tightened will motivate you to stick with it. So that you get even more chances for success you may want to drill in extra holes. For the ladies it may be an old skirt you used to fit into. To test your fitness you may want to record your resting heart rate. Each morning before you get up take your pulse, as you get fitter your heart rate should decrease. I use calorie counters and distance on motorised exercise equipment to keep my mind involved. Each workout I record my distance and calories burned. It keeps me honest and gives me something to strive for. If you visit my Web Page I have a chart that gives you time, distance and fitness level comparisons for those who run outdoors. 

But more important than any other tip if you want to move towards a healthier lifestyle you have to TAKE SOME ACTION NOW! 

About the author: Matt Church is a speaker and trainer who travels over 100 days a year delivering seminars to corporations helping their employees lay the foundations for success. If you would like to help your employees get their priorities right or would like to find out more about a seminar run by Matt Church then visit his website at www.mattchurch.com.au

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