We run a gym, so New Year’s is kind of our Black Friday. All the resolutions drive people back to the gym. And the gyms, in preparation, have all kinds of banners and promises. Declarations “Lose those holiday pounds!” or all manner of “Get started on that beach body today!” Or our least favorite: “New year, new you!” (Or new body, or whatever.)
Don’t get us wrong. We are a business, and we would love your patronage. But we’re not going to promise you a rose garden.
Let’s have some real talk. Getting in shape is hard. Eating well is challenging. And to do both consistently, with work and family and about a thousand or so other distractions, can feel nearly impossible. Sometimes we end up spending more time beating ourselves up about the things we aren’t doing, piling on guilt and worry.
It’s important to stop and realize that exercise, nutrition, and the entirety of your health can and should be something that you do completely for yourself. This is a very liberating thing to internalize. But if you do so, you also have to accept that it’s entirely your responsibility. You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to, but you should be willing to accept the outcome — whatever it is you choose. Internalize this reality and use it as a motivator. But don’t be a jerk to yourself. (There are enough gym, equipment, food, and weight-loss drug ads already being jerks to you as is.)
Instead of focusing on “new year, new you” or chasing a beach body, stop and think about what it is you actually want. Maybe you don’t actually care how ripped you look on the beach, but it would be really great if your back didn’t hurt all the time. Perhaps you don’t need to be able to bench press your own body weight, but it would be excellent to have the range of motion to lift your suitcase over your head and put it in your overhead bin. Or even: “Well it sure would be nice to get my GI tract under control so I don’t fear the bathroom.”
Maybe you do sincerely want a beach-ready body, and that’s fine too. Or lose 20 lbs, because you know it would benefit how you feel. These are not inherently bad goals — far from it. The difference is in where they come from. If they’re for you, from you, then we say go for it. These are real goals. Human goals. And at Legitimate Movement, we will support you in them.
We just want to make sure that above all else, your goals are yours and will lead you to greater happiness and growth.
All that to say: if you’re so inclined, why not prepare for the New Year the Legitimate Movement way?
Here’s how to do it.
1. Write down your health and fitness goals for the new year. They can be of the more classic sort, such as being able to execute a Get Up with a specific weight that you’ve been chasing. Or it can be a lifestyle one, like only eating out 2x/week max. It can even be mental-health focused, like being sure to make time to read for at least half an hour a day. Whatever your goals are, make sure you ask yourself this question: IS THIS SOMETHING I TRULY WANT FOR MYSELF? Or was it something that you feel like you SHOULD want? If the latter, drop it. Your goals should be things you actually want.
2. Ask yourself, are these goals SMART goals? That means, are they Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-based. (Click here to read more on SMART goals.)
3. Get a plan together.
4. Follow that plan. You don’t need to be “hardcore” about it — just be consistent most of all. Consistency is key. Instead of a New Year’s resolution, in fact, why not just go for New Year’s resolve?
5. Give yourself a break when you’re not perfect.
If you need help with any of this process, come talk to us. At Legitimate Movement our priority is making you move better and get stronger — and we mean that as broadly as possible. We are here to help.
Being able to lift 3x your body weight is an impressive feat, but it means nothing if you’re in extreme pain as a result of your training. Having an impressive beach body is meaningless if you’re unhappy. We want you happy and healthy, first and foremost.