We’ve all been there, every single one of us. We start a new diet or exercise program and it doesn’t work out – we start to place blame when things don’t go how we thought they would. “It’s hard to get the type of protein I need”, or “my gym doesn’t have all of the equipment I need”. If pressed, we’d probably admit that it isn’t down to the availability of equipment, nutrition or support that has led us to failure but more likely, that extra bit of effort or attention to detail.
So why is it hard to get results in a time where everything is so accessible? You can download a hundred fitness apps, buy virtually anything in our supermarkets and join a handful of gyms within a short car journey.
For most of us, it boils down to the fact that we have no one holding us accountable for our efforts (or sometimes, lack-of). Accountability is a key factor in determining the likelihood of success in any endeavour, and especially in our fitness and wellness activity.
Let’s take a look at four simple ways to add accountability to your weight loss or workout program.
PLAN, PLAN AND THEN PLAN SOME MORE
Never underestimate the power of putting pen to paper – it can have far more of a profound effect than entering into your phone or a digital calendar. So, buy a wall calendar or a day planner or even an empty notebook and start planning your workouts. Get your plan on paper and then it’s easier to stick to.
Once you’ve got your plan down, start taking steps to make it a concrete plan. Sign up for your classes, confirm your schedule with your workout buddy, or even post about your intentions on social media – all of these simple and fast steps will help you hold yourself accountable to your plan. And remember what they say: failing to plan is planning to fail.
DOCUMENT YOUR JOURNEY
Don’t just document your plan, document your results, too. Not only will that help with accountability, but it will help keep you motivated and wanting to accomplish more as well.
The most simple is journaling. Whether that’s keeping a log of your workouts and accomplishments or creating a photo journal of your journey on social media if you feel comfortable – it will help create a history of small victories that keep you motivated and moving forward.
Plus – if you’re posting your gym selfies on Instagram and suddenly stop, someone’s bound to inquire why – see? You’re already being held accountable!
MAKE A FINANCIAL COMMITMENT
A lot of people find it helpful to make a financial commitment to their goals – of course, we recommend joining a gym or investing in a coach but whether it’s a new gym membership, new trainers or a high-tech fitness tracker, investing in your goals helps you feel committed to getting it done.
You’re more likely to attend a gym you’re paying for than you are to use that free online exercise video. And the reason is simple: you’re not losing anything (in theory – you’re losing the opportunity to reach your goals) when you skip a day of online workouts, but if you skip out on a gym membership – you’re spending real money and it’s harder to make excuses to skip that workout. Not to mention the time you’re wasting in not making a change.
Whether it’s buying a gym membership, committing to a trainer or buying new shoes: drop a little cash on your goal and you’ll find that the investment often pays off big in the end!
IS IT THAT EASY?
Nobody said it was going to be easy, but it certainly doesn’t have to be as difficult as you’re making it.
The bottom line is, if you truly want to make your health and fitness routine stick and see the results you’ve always wanted, it’s important to hold yourself accountable. Don’t be afraid of putting yourself out there in order to achieve your goals – it’s a liberating and rewarding experience.