Resolutions. They’re the kind of thing we set in place for when the clock strikes midnight on 1st January. After all, a new year is as good a time as any to set some goals, whether that’s to build on your existing achievements or to tackle a new challenge.
We start the year as we mean to go on, pursuing our goals and ticking off our mini achievements. But when July rolls around, how many of us can say that we’re still chasing those goals that we set in the winter months?
With the recent re-opening of gyms, what better time than now to review our goals so that we can smash out each session? Whether you’ve returned to the gym or have found a new love in the home workout scene, the post-lockdown gym-reopening buzz has got many of us thinking about how we can refocus on our goals and what these should be, us included.
Set mini goals
SMART goals, FAST goals or CLEAR objectives; whenever someone suggests a new goal, we’re surrounded by acronyms for setting goals that are achievable and attainable. Whichever acronym you choose to use, there’s strong reasoning behind their use: accountability.
Breaking down our end goal into smaller targets that we can tick off as and when we achieve them is not only a way to hold yourself accountable for your goal, it also encourages you with each accomplishment.
If your main nutrition goal is to reduce your portion size, start off by aiming to reduce the portion size of just breakfast, then add lunch and dinner.
If you’d prefer to cut back on the amount of unhealthy snacks that accompany the binge sessions that we’ve all picked up over lockdown, set an initial goal of reducing one movie marathon snack a week.
It’s easier to decrease your snacks over a period of time rather than cutting the extra unnecessary snacks out completely in cold turkey fashion.
Here are 3 goals that you can use as a starting point to make sure that your nutrition is on the right track.
Goal #1 – Focus on what you’re eating
Now’s the time to really focus on the unwanted habits that have crept in over the past few months. The multiple ‘I’m just going to treat myself’ comments add up and can push back your fitness goals, not to mention the disruption it can have on your macro goals.
When settling down to eat, try to eat away from distractions such as your phone, the tv or your open emails on your work laptop.
There’s also no need to rush your food, it’s not going anywhere! Take your time chewing and take at least 20 minutes before reaching for dessert or a snack to fill the gap — you might find that you just needed time for your food to digest to feel full.
Goal #2 – Snack smart
Snacks add up and have a lot of weight when it comes to our diet.
If you’ve taken to snacking on less than healthy options when you’ve got the option of a healthier snack, take a minute to think about which one you really need.
Do you really need that second bag of crisps today or will that banana be more rewarding?
If you like to snack on something more than just a piece of fruit or plain yoghurt, why not get creative in the kitchen on the weekends or in between those Zoom calls and whip up a batch of egg muffins or protein balls?
Goal #3 – Reduce the takeaways
We hate to be the bearer of bad news… but those takeaways that have become a new weekly ritual? They could be a factor affecting your physical goals.
If you’re not keen to reduce your number of takeaways (supporting the local community AND no washing up? We don’t blame you!), why not swap every other takeaway for a lighter option or choose a restaurant that offers a healthier menu.
We’re thinking lots of greens, a source of protein and some carbs. In other words, a takeaway that resembles your own cooking that isn’t deep fried or lacking vegetables — the more home-cooked, the better!
Don’t beat yourself up
Whilst we know that we’ve focused on the need to set some nutrition and dietary goals, it’s okay to not be perfect 100% of the time.
As long as you try your best, there’s no stopping you from achieving your goals! An unplanned temporary pause on your goals once every while isn’t the end of the world, particularly if it means staying motivated and happy.
Remember, the most successful routine is the one that you can stick to.
Take home message
There’s no better time than now to reassess our nutrition goals and take a good look at how lockdown may have altered our dietary choices, impacting our fitness goals.
Take a look at our recommended goals and have a think about other nutrition goals that you can implement to make the most of being out of lockdown.
Think of it as a fresh start or a chance to become motivated again! Getting your nutrition right and correcting unwanted habits will really help you to achieve your fitness goals.