It's the Season to Change Your Life

Alexander Reeser

Sport and Exercise Psychology, Strength and Conditioning, Biokinesiology

It's the Season to Change Your Life - Fitness, balance, coaching, mindset, goal planning, daily practice

Photo by Bev Childress

 

For a majority of the nation, 2018 brings goals of self-improvement. Whether that means getting a promotion at work or quitting your current day job entirely to follow a passion, turning over a new leaf has become an intoxicating ritual Americans continue to practice once every 365 days. It doesn’t take an expert to realize that the fitness industry experiences great financial rewards from this fascinating practice.

 

 

As a part of the fitness industry, I’m torn by the success gyms across the world reap during New Year's with a sweet-sounding pitch and a lot of externally motivated consumers. Don’t get me wrong—I love that people are motivated to change their lives through fitness. There’s not a more worthwhile goal in my opinion. However, I’m fed up with gyms not providing consumers the tools and motivation required to keep them there long enough to actually better their lives. You made the effort to get in the door, it’s only fair for us to do whatever we can to keep you there.

 

That said, here are my four tips for you to keep in mind when pursuing your 2018 fitness goals.

 

1. Internal Versus External Motivation

Separating these two types of motivation is, in my view, the first step in realizing long-term fitness goals. External motivation is created from an external stimulus. The fitness industry feeds off of external motivation to entice you into buying whatever they’re selling (supplements, membership, etc.).

 

It's the Season to Change Your Life

Photo by Bev Childress

 

External motivation is great for someone looking to start to a new fitness regime, but not so great at getting them to adhere to it. Internal motivation, however, is created from an internal stimulus. Words like passion, drive, and desire are often used to define someone’s internal motivation. When it comes to fitness, individuals that realize the most success are not those people who train so they can fit into a dress for their cousins wedding (external motivation), but rather those who train because they truly love the boost in self confidence they received from wearing the dress in the first place (internal motivation). Allow internal motivation to drive you and you will master the first step to success.

 

2. Set a Plan and Do All of It

I’ve been fortunate enough to work with some of the world’s most elite athletes. Most of them have told me that they set some sort of plan for what it is they want to accomplish in their training and competition season. Having the drive to improve yourself is a start, but what’s the point if you’ve got nowhere to direct your energy? The New Year brings a lot of “I want to” but not a lot of “here’s what I want to do and how I’m going to do it.”

 

3. Find Balance

This may seem like a no-brainer, but I’m consistently amazed by how many well-versed individuals in the fitness industry fail to appreciate the importance of aspects outside of training. Balancing your life when tackling fitness goals is key in order to maintain motivation and a healthy, realistic outlook on progress.

 

4. Check Your Ego

Lastly, check your ego at the door. You may be the best in your world at what you do, but chances are the coach or trainer who offered you some guidance will help you in achieve your fitness goals. That being said, the gym can be a scary place for newcomers. Don’t let fear paralyze you into not helping yourself. You’ve already shown you can show up, so be proactive and make it worth your while.

 

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