And into June we go…
It’s not uncommon to see posts around this time of year asking if you are halfway to the goals you set yourself back in January, and it can be a good time to reflect on the progress you’ve made (or not) and look at what you can improve on, or start as we approach the second half of the year.
One of the biggest realisations for a lot of people is that they have put off getting started on a goal or project because they felt put off or intimidated by the amount of time that was going to be needed to do the thing. Now, 6 months later, they could have been done, or at the very least 6 months closer to achieving the thing.
As a wise man once said, “We overestimate what we can do in a day, and underestimate what we can do in a month.”
If you have a big fitness, nutrition or body comp goal that you have been putting off because of the time it’ll take, here are 3 tips to help get you going.
- Understand why you want to do it. Having a clear reason for doing a thing makes it a lot easier to stick to when times are tough. For me, I want to be in great shape to keep up with my daughter as she grows up, and I want to set a great example for her of setting goals and putting the work in to get them. I’m going to need a pretty big roadblock to make me miss sessions and put off getting started on something.
- Break down the process you need to follow into bite-sized chunks. Once you know the outcome you want, it’s time to forget it for a while and focus on the process. If it’s improving your nutrition for example, what are the boxes you need to tick every day in order to do so? Get your protein in, use some kind of portion size guide, drink zero cal drinks most of the time, eat your fruit and veggies etc. Then go to work on those.
- Set up some milestone progress markers and reward yourself for reaching them. That might be time passed, inches lost, or training sessions completed, but celebrating your little wins along the way can be a massive boost in motivation to keep going.
Tracking calories is a great way to make progress on your fat loss goal. While it’s not essential, it can help provide better awareness of how much food you are eating and make it easier to start seeing some progress.
One of the most important things to remember is that the starting point you use, regardless of the method, is just a guesstimate. Whether you go down the complex Harris-Benedict method to find your caloric needs, or a simpler option (which works out more or less the same and takes about 10 seconds to do), the number you get is an approximation.
The real work begins after you get started.
You have to be consistent, measure progress, and adjust your approach every 2-3 weeks in order to figure out what works for you. So don’t view the number you get (or range of numbers, I need to re-do the video to show the range of values, multiplying by 10 and 12, I give clients instead of a single target number) as being set in stone, instead be open to adapting up or down as needed to give you a better chance of being consistent for long enough to see progress.
One exercise I’ve recently put into my warmups, for almost everyone, is a bear crawl. It does a lot of very good things to help get you ready for your training session.
- It warms up your shoulders, and gets your serratus fired up and working, especially moving backwards
- It gets your abs nd spinal erectors working hard to stabilise your torso
- It warms up your hips and quads
- It gets your heart rate up a little
You don’t need a lot to get the value this movement can bring, try kicking off your workouts with 3-4 out and backs of about 4-6 steps each way.