We are in the full swing of the holidays. You may have your Christmas tree set up already or are planning too very soon. Your calendar is starting to fill up with holiday events. And the very last thing you want to do is start trying to lose weight. So, we do our best to push down the feelings of disappointment, again. Every year this happens and we try to find something that works in the new year. Maybe we get some results but then we fall back into old habits after a few weeks. It's a super frustrating cycle. I know because I was there too for a long time.
My cycle looked more like fitness extremes that lead me to late night binging and no results. I would work so hard and get nowhere. I made things complicated for myself but what a relief I'm no longer there. That's a story for another time. You can check out this blog for more of my story here.
So why shouldn't we wait till the new year to start making changes in our health and fitness journey? Because a lot of us wait for things to calm down and be exactly how we want so we can get in the best shape of our life. I'm sorry but that doesn't happen too often. Like I stated above we can try but a lot of times we end up falling off the wagon. What is more realistic and long term is starting to put in place good habits despite the things going on around us. I have a lady I'm working with right now, her kids have been sick and her husband has been in the hospital. She's not getting every little thing done. BUT she is making tremendous progress. She's focusing on hitting her protein and calories AND she's seeing weight loss! Despite the crazy going on around her. She is entering the holidays already ahead of the game. You could do the same entering the new year.
I had a conversion the other day about holiday burnout. I was talking to a mom who was telling me that she muscles through the holidays. Then feels like she needs to take a break from everything for a while to recover. But it sounded more like she was dreading it all rather then being excited about it. She's been putting her health on the back burner and now needs to muscle through the holidays. I found this sooooo sad because that's not what the holidays are even about. What a terrible way to go about it. I'm not saying this to put anyone down because I do understand there are a lot of moving parts. BUT let this be a challenge to assess what we are making ourselves busy with. Maybe there's one, two or ten things we could take a step back from. To ensure that we were actually present during the holidays. That's all I'm going to say about that. But I have been reading this book “ The ruthless elimination of hurry” and it talks about things like this. And not being busy for the sake of being busy.
So, back to making progress in our health and fitness starting now. Think about how good it would feel to be at the holiday parties and actually be feeling good. Actually having energy for all the activities and feeling good in the clothes you're wearing. Could you imagine!? And it doesn't have to be that complicated. It can start by drinking a little more water. I'm talking instead of 3 glasses 4. Or you start walking each day for ten minutes. Or a couple days a week. These small changes can bring such big results in the short term and long term. Also, wouldn't it be nice to prove it to yourself? That you can stick to it during the holidays. That you can stick to it despite the busyness.
Speaking of proving it to yourself. Peter(my husband) and I were talking a few weeks back about how we felt like we needed a discipline reset. We were letting small things fall through the cracks. Nothing major but we don't want to be good at things we want to be great. My husband is a physical therapist and I'm a personal trainer/ health coach. We both want to grow in our fields and be excellent at what we do. So we felt like to excel and be good at what we do. We need to push our limits in our personal lives. So a few weeks ago we started the 75 hard challenge together. I haven't posted anything about it yet because I was nervous too to be honest. I don't know why but I wanted to start and it was him and I for a bit. Working through the challenges and doing something hard, together. Why would we start this during the holidays? Why would we do something so extreme? Because we want to get better, we want to be excellent, we want to prove to ourselves that we can do it. I'm not going to go into detail on this challenge. You can message me about it if you'd like. But we felt we didn't want to push it off, we want to grow and there is no perfect time.
Which brings me to three things you can do to start making small daily changes that will bring big results. Whether it's in the fitness department or not. These can help.
Accountability. This is huge. It can be annoying sometimes. Having Peter check in on me to see how I'm doing each day with what I need to get done for the 75 hard. But in the end, I want to get better. I want to see results in the area of discipline. SO first I needed to tell him my goals. Then be humble enough to allow him to check in and critique me when I'm not giving 100%. This is not easy, at all. But it helps me to not slack off. It holds me accountable and when I have a weak moment I know I have someone in my corner to encourage me.
Have a Daily task list. Right now I have a daily task list for 75 hard and for work. Now I still do other things for my health, discipline and job. But these are things I know will move the needle forward for me if I do it every day. For example if you want to be getting in better shape hitting your protein goal is vital. So that could be on your daily task list. But a goal for you could be getting better at a morning routine. So on your daily task list you have to journal for 5 minutes. It can be something so simple or bigger. But don't do more than 5 tasks per day.
Have a goal and don't quit. Don't quit. How many of us can say that we have quit on ourselves? I know I have. So many times. Because it gets inconvenient or “hard”. But if we want to get better we have to push through. We have to know what our goal is and why it's our goal. We have to be willing to push through that mental block. That lazy nature we can so easily gravitate too. I know I get lazy and don't want to give 100% sometimes. Actually most times. I would love to slide on by and get all the results I want. But I know that's unrealistic.
So I say all this to encourage you. Don't wait. Set some small goals. Tell your friend or spouse about it. And don't give up. Do it for you, your family, so you can be the best version of you.