New Year’s Fitness Goals: Lifelong Habits, Not Quick Fixes

We have all heard the saying “new year, new you,” and the beginning of January is notorious for people trying to hit lofty New Year’s fitness goals.

More often than not, this is quickly followed by dwindling numbers as the year progresses, and these same people give up on their fitness aims.

A big reason that people don’t follow through is that they set unattainable goals from the beginning and quickly burn out when they don’t see instantaneous results.

The key is to set sustainable fitness, workout, and exercise goals.

Follow the tips below to build healthy habits that will help you crush your New Year’s fitness goals — and stay healthy for years to come!

This muscle-building workout for women over 40 contains five of our favorite exercises!

Tips For Setting Realistic New Year’s Fitness Goals

There is nothing wrong with setting the bar high. However, choosing short-term, realistic goals along the way to reaching your long-term goals can be helpful.

Exercise, at times, can feel like a chore! And it can be especially daunting when you set lofty long-term goals. By changing your mindset, you will be able to stay motivated as you reach new, smaller, everyday goals.

You may have set a goal to lose “X” amount of pounds or drop three dress sizes. However, as much as being lean and fit is important for long-term health, fitness is not just about weight or clothing size.

Exercise and fitness have numerous overall health benefits. Exercise is important for overall physical health and can help decrease the incidence of a number of chronic diseases, like diabetes and hypertension.

On top of that, exercise itself can improve your mood, decrease stress levels, and help you feel empowered as a woman. This is why your New Year’s fitness goals should be something you can sustain as lifelong goals, not just quick fixes.

Make Performance Goals Instead of Just Weight Loss Goals

While weight loss always seems to be the top priority for women looking to get into shape, performance goals are even more fun to achieve.

Knowing that you can achieve physical goals based on strength and endurance is one of the best feelings out there. This is great not just for your physical health but also for your mental and emotional well-being.

So, instead of just focusing on the scale when planning your workouts, you should also include performance goals to motivate your body and mind.

For example, if you are an avid runner or are just looking to start from scratch, you can make it a goal to enter a 5K race. As you train, you can focus on other performance goals, like trying to run non-stop for 5 minutes or improving your mile time by 10 seconds.

If you prefer working out in a group, make it a goal to go to two exercise classes a week or to meet up with a friend every weekend for a workout.

These are just a few ideas to set small, performance-related goals. By attaining these small victories, you will also gain muscle, build endurance, and reach weight loss goals. This will all get you closer to your long-term fitness goals.

Learn to effectively achieve your goals by starting to simplify your weight loss journey!

Set Reasonable One Week or Daily Goals

Setting the bar high with your New Year’s fitness goals is great, but sometimes, your long-term goal may seem too challenging. So, instead, set some short-term goals to reach along the way!

For example, if your goal is to lose 20 pounds, set a goal to lose one pound a week.

Research has shown that even moderate weight loss can decrease your risk for chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, and hypertension. So you don’t have to drop a ton of weight to see numerous health benefits.

If you have a lofty performance goal, you should also set short-term goals for these as well.

For example, if you want to increase the amount of weight you can squat by 50 pounds, try adding just five extra pounds every couple of weeks. If you try to hit your goal too quickly, not only do you increase the risk of injury, but you may also lose motivation if you don’t see immediate improvement.

Schedule Your Workouts

It’s easy to make a New Year’s resolution and say you are going to work out more. However, you are more likely to achieve this if you actually schedule your workouts.

Otherwise, you may fall back into the habit of saying, “I’m too busy to work out,” at the end of a long day.

If you know that you have a busy schedule after work or in the evening, make it a habit to get up early and work out before your day starts.

Or you can even schedule a midday workout if you have a long lunch break.

If you put it on your schedule, you make it a daily task that needs to be checked off just like anything else.

This video will help you create your own home workout plan for weight loss and toning!

Try New Activities

The new year is a great time to vary your workouts with new exercises and routines.

By adding variety to your workouts, you can become re-engaged in a new fitness regimen. This will also help you not to fall back on old habits of skipping workouts.

You can try out a class at your gym, like a boot camp class or barre class. You could even join a run or bike group so that you will have other people to motivate you along the way.

Expand your horizons and try new activities outside of your comfort zone. You may be surprised how much you enjoy these new workouts!

Build Power With Plyometrics and HIIT Workouts

If you aren’t already incorporating HIIT and plyometric moves into your workouts, then the new year is the time to add these exercises to your fitness arsenal.

Some women avoid high-intensity exercises due to fear of worsening knee or joint pain. However, even if you suffer from joint pain, you can modify HIIT and plyometric moves to enjoy all of the benefits of these workouts.

What is HIIT?

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a great cardio option to burn calories in a short amount of time. HIIT involves doing intervals of an exercise at the hardest effort you can sustain for a given period of time.

You can do pretty much any exercise you choose during these intervals. This gives you the opportunity to train multiple muscle groups so that you will build lean muscle while you simultaneously burn fat in a short period of time.

For example, one study showed that two minutes of sprint intervals produced similar post-exercise oxygen consumption compared to 30 minutes of continuous running at a lower intensity.

This is important when you have minimal time to workout but want to achieve the same fitness goals.

This HIIT workout is one of our favorite quick workouts to burn fat and build muscle.

Combining HIIT and Plyometric Workouts

Plyometric training involves explosive compound movements that are typically done with just your body weight or very light weights.

Exercises include moves like plyometric pushups, box jumps, and jump lunges.

The goal is to train for maximum force production in the smallest period of time, so reps are kept low, and the intensity and effort are high, similar to HIIT workouts.

This makes HIIT and plyo workouts a perfect combination.

Plyometric training focuses on increasing the strength and efficiency of the fast-twitch fibers.

This will carry over to all of your other workouts through gains in speed and strength.

For example, a study in the Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research found that a combination of squat and plyometric training provided a significant increase in hip and thigh power production, resulting in a greater increase in vertical jumping ability than could be achieved from training solely with one program or the other.

During plyometric movements, you are trying to perform each movement as explosively as possible, which normally means leaving the ground.

However, you can modify how high you jump based on your current fitness level and underlying knee or joint limitations.

You can dedicate one of your workout days to doing strictly plyometrics or add plyo exercises into your other routines.

If you want to try out a great HIIT-Plyo Workout to aid with your New Year’s fitness goals, add this routine to your weekly workouts.

Fit Mom New Year’s HIIT-PLYO Workout

With these exercises, perform the movement for 30 seconds, then rest for 30 seconds before moving to the next move.

Alternating Jump Lunges

Start in a split stance position with your hands on your hips and your knees bent at a 90-degree angle with your right leg forward.
Lower your left knee toward the ground while bringing your right thigh parallel to the floor in a lunge position.
Push off the ground, jump, and switch the position of your legs while in mid-air, landing into the lunge position with the left leg forward.
Repeat, switching legs on each jump.

Plyometric Push-Ups

Start in a plank position with wrists directly under the shoulders and body in a straight line from head to toe.
Lower your chest to the floor, push up with enough force for your hands to leave the floor for a second, and then land softly and repeat.
You can also do this move on your knees.

Lateral Skaters

Start with your legs slightly wider than shoulder distance apart and arms at the sides.
Bring your left leg behind at a slight angle into a reverse lunge with the front right knee at a 90-degree angle.
Swing the arms in front of that bent knee and leap the back leg forward to switch sides in a skating motion.
Alternate your arms and legs as you switch sides like a speed skater.

180 Jump Squats

Stand with your feet hip-width apart and begin to lower your body into a squat until your thighs are parallel to the floor.
Jump up while turning your body 180 degrees mid-air so that you land facing in the opposite direction.
Immediately lower into your squat again, and jump and turn in the opposite direction so you land in the starting position.
Repeat as quickly as possible.

Broad Jumps

Stand with your feet hip-width apart and begin to lower the body into a squat.
Jump up as high as you can forward, and focus on landing softly on your feet.
Immediately return to the quarter-squat position and repeat.

After completing this circuit, rest for a full minute. Then repeat it two more times.

This 15-minute HIIT workout can be done at home with no equipment!

Keep Track Of Your Progress

Sometimes, it can help to see your progress in writing.

Seeing all of the strides you are making in your fitness makes it easier to stay motivated and accountable to your goals.

You can even leave yourself little notes on post-its or even as alerts on your phone to remind you of the goals you have achieved so far.

Another idea for the new year is to keep before and after photos from the start of your journey to reinforce how hard you have worked along the way.

You should also keep a fitness journal and write out your workouts to keep yourself accountable for your fitness.

If you exercise regularly, it helps to keep track of how you are improving along the way.

If you have set a weight loss goal, monitoring the scale seems like the obvious thing to do.

But again, there is much more to health and weight loss than just that number.

If you gain muscle and lose fat simultaneously, your weight may stay the same or increase slightly even if you are healthier.

This can be discouraging to see and can cause you to lose motivation.

This is where you can track things like body fat percentage. Your body composition is an important determinant of health

You should also track the weight or reps you do during resistance workouts to monitor your strength gains.

During cardio workouts monitoring your heart rate during similar workouts will allow you to see how your endurance is improving over time.

These things will keep you motivated as you see how much you progress over time.

These five actionable tips teach you how to create a healthier lifestyle and body!

Stay Positive!

Everyone has ups and downs in their fitness journey.

So, even if you have a setback or two while working towards your New Year’s fitness goals, that’s OK!

Instead of completely giving up on your resolution, work on smaller, attainable goals while you get back on track.

Sticking to New Year’s fitness goals can be tough if you don’t see immediate changes or progress.

This is why your New Year’s fitness goals should be about making lifelong changes and not just quick fixes.

Being a Fit Mother is about seeing your health and fitness as something to continually improve on, not just for yourself but for your entire family.

Holly Smith, M.D.
B.S. – Dietetics, NASM-PES Certified Trainer

Writer, The Fit Mother Project

Holly is an osteopathic physician, runner, triathlete, and fitness and nutrition enthusiast.

She is board certified in nephrology and internal medicine, has a bachelors degree in dietetics and is a certified personal trainer with NASM-PES certification.

Holly has completed four full ironmans, twelve marathons, countless half ironmans, olympic distance triathlons, half marathons and numerous other road races.

Holly joined the Fit Father Project in May 2019 as a regular writer, contributing articles on health, wellness, exercise, and nutrition.

She has also recently qualified for the 2020 World Championships for Ironman 70.3, in New Zealand!

If you’re a busy mom who wants to finally lose weight,
get healthy, and actually keep the pounds off for good,
this is the simple program you’ll love sticking to…

Our Fit Mother 30X Program (FM30X) is the answer you’ve been looking for. Inside FM30X, you’ll receive:

The simple & delicious Fit Mother Meal Plan with easy recipes for you and your family.
The metabolism-boosting Fit Mother 30X Workout (under 90 min/week) to kickstart your metabolism for fast fat burning.
VIP email coaching where we’ll personally walk you through the program.

Learn More About FM30X
<!–Read the FM30X Program Overview letter here –>

If you’re a busy mom who wants to finally lose weight,
get healthy, and actually keep the pounds off for good,
this is the simple program you’ll love sticking to…

Our Fit Mother 30X Program (FM30X) is the answer you’ve been looking for. Inside FM30X, you’ll receive:

The simple & delicious Fit Mother Meal Plan with easy recipes for you and your family.
The metabolism-boosting Fit Mother 30X Workout (under 90 min/week) to kickstart your metabolism for fast fat burning.
VIP email coaching where we’ll personally walk you through the program.

Learn More About FM30X
<!–Read the FM30X Program Overview letter here –>

*Please know that weight loss results & health changes/improvements vary from individual to individual; you may not achieve similar results. Always consult with your doctor before making health decisions. This is not medical advice – simply very well-researched info on New Year’s fitness goals.

The post New Year’s Fitness Goals: Lifelong Habits, Not Quick Fixes appeared first on The Fit Mother Project – Weight Loss For Busy Moms 40+.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.