5 Key Habits for Achieving Your Health and Fitness Goals
Prolific author and motivational speaker Brian Tracy famously says that “successful people are simply those with successful habits.” In our experience, this is something that’s incredibly accurate when it comes to achieving health and fitness goals. You can have the best information and the best intentions, but your habits are what’s going to make or break you. Here are our top 5 habits for achieving your health and fitness goals.
“In essence, if we want to direct our lives, we must take control of our consistent actions. It’s not what we do once in a while that shapes our lives, but what we do consistently.”
– Tony Robbins
The all-time most common fitness mistake is starting too hard or too fast, and then dropping off entirely due to injury, burnout or lack of motivation. If you want to succeed at fitness then you need to build a habit of consistency. It’s far better to workout once or twice per week for an entire year than it is to workout six times per week for one month of the year!
To put this into action, start by picking an achievable and realistic amount of training sessions per week (an amount that you can accomplish even on your busiest week) and plotting them into your diary.
2) Stack Little Wins
Winning is not a sometime thing; it’s an all-time thing. You don’t win once in a while, you don’t do things right once in a while, you do them right all the time. Winning is a habit.
Another huge fitness mistake is setting goals so huge that they’re almost impossible to accomplish, which inevitably becomes demotivating and sets you up to fail. Instead, aim to build the habit of stacking up little wins.
So instead of saying I want to lose 5 stone (70lb), you can try breaking this up into smaller, more achievable goals. For example, this month I want to lose 2-4lb. Get yourself the small victory, gain the confidence, and then push on towards your next small goal.
You’ll be amazed the psychological difference it makes having dozens of small wins under your belt. You’ll feel more confident, more determined, more energetic. It’s like magic.
3) Track the Boring Daily Stuff
You’ll never change your life until you change something you do daily. The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.
-John C. Maxwell
It might not be the most exciting thing in the world to do, but taking 5 minutes every day to track and record some simple health and fitness information can make you much more likely to accomplish your goals. We recommend a simple little notepad or journal that you can tick off each day for things like…
- Making sure you’ve drank 8 glasses of water
- Getting 8 hours of sleep
- Eating at least 5 portions of fruit and vegetables
It’s not sexy, and you’re not going to get a bunch of likes on social media for it, but it’s a habit that moves you a little bit closer to health and fitness success every single day.
4) Revisiting Your WHY
“He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.”
– Friedrich Nietzsche
Everyone is at their most motivated for the first few of weeks of their health and fitness journey, and yet as little as 4 to 6 weeks later that initial motivation can start to fade. This is why 80% of fitness new years’ resolutions fail by the second week of February.
One of the best, most effective ways to combat this is by revisiting your WHY. Actively taking the time to think about what it was that made you decide to start your journey in the first place? What is it that you want to achieve? (Your Pull) and what is that causes you pain that you want to move away from? (Your Push)
Make it a habit to regularly revisit this. Write it down in a journal and read it multiple times per week. Alternatively, write it on sticky notes and post them around your house. You’ll find your motivation goes up significantly.
5) Learn to Love the Kitchen
To eat is a necessity, but to eat intelligently is an art.
- Francois de la Rochefoucauld
It doesn’t matter what your fitness goal is, lose weight, build muscle, get stronger, run a marathon, compete at the Olympics. Being able to prepare, cook and eat delicious, nutritious food is going to be essential for your success.
Remember, you’re only actually training a few hours per week, the rest of the time you’re recovering and refueling your body ready to go again. In a way, you can think of yourself as a high-spec formula 1 car. You might only race for a few hours each week, but when you do race you want to be able to do the best you possibly can, and that requires good preparation.
Aim to build a habit of loving the kitchen. Get to know the different types of vegetables you can cook with. Learn about the different types of proteins, carbs and fats that you can build meals from. Get used to trying different recipes. We’re not saying you need to become the next Masterchef, but if you can make it a habit of putting together a handful of tasty, nutritious meals each week, you’ll be making a huge step towards achieving your fitness goals.
Summary – Your 5 Essential Fitness Habits
Your health and fitness goals are achievable. You have the information, the motivation and the technology all at your fingertips. To maximize your chances of success, though, you’ll want to build habits of…
- Stacking little wins
- Tracking the boring stuff
- Revisiting your why
- And learning to love the kitchen
They’re not always the coolest, the sexiest or the most interesting things to focus on, but we can promise you that they’ll make the biggest difference to your health and fitness over the long run.