For people starting out on a weight loss programme their goals may seem a long way off. This is why many people do not last the distance. But we think you need 4 things in order to give yourself a chance to succeed.
- AN EFFECTIVE PROGRAMME – simply hitting the treadmill or watching what you eat might not be enough. You need to get the balance right, and not make things so extreme that there is no chance of long term sustainability. You need an effective programme – use one of our 12 week programmes, and stick to it!!! A 2007 study in the Journal of Sport Medicine found that a mixture of cardio and resistance training is best for fat loss. Therefore, lifting weights (even bodyweight), combined with cardio training is the best solution. Get a programme that incorporates both!!! It is also advisable to make gradual dietary changes. Yes, diet is key, but changing everything all in one go may not be sustainable for you. Pick one or two things that you know are definite no no’s, get them out of the diet, and once you are into good habits, pick the next thing to change.
- GOALS – you need to have goals that achievable but challenging. Setting a series of shorter term goals will help you build towards that final victory. If you achieve something every two weeks, you will be motivated from the continued improvement. You are more likely to stay the course. A goal of working out 5 times this week is likely to be more achievable than taking 5 minutes off your 5k time in just 14 days. But remember, achieving a goal is not an excuse for a binge!
- ENTER A RACE – knowing that you are going to be towing the line in 10 weeks’ time can be the inspiration you need. When there is a reason for training, you are more likely to commit. Train for a reason.
- GET A TRAINING PARTNER – people feel safe when they have a support network. Having someone to lean on is a good thing. You are accountable to them. You are more likely to work out when you have had a bad day, or get up early for a run, if someone else is depending on you. It is human nature to not want to lose. Some friendly competition will make you push yourself that little bit harder. Being out of your comfort zone will definitely see you achieve your goals faster. When you are in the early stages of a weight loss programme, the temptation to rest and order that pizza can be a strong one. Knowing someone else is committing as well may just give you the strength of character to resist the tough times. If you are in the gym, the added benefit of someone to spot you on heavier lifts is also useful. Making training social makes it fun. Hanging out with a friend while also getting fit…what could be better?