It's New Year's resolution time again and a chance to make positive changes in your life. This year, use Coach Jenny's Evolution-Resolution system and make good on those resolutions.More: 3 Ways to Stick to Your Running Resolution
Start With a Specific and Realistic Goal
Goals that are too lofty don't stick and can be overwhelming. Go with a realistic goal and aim low. For example, train to run and participate in a 5K in May. The race makes the goal specific. Plus, it is very realistic to train to run a 5K in four to five months.
- Make it stick: Register for the race. It will keep you accountable to your resolution and keep you going.
Follow a Realistic Training Program
The number one way to reach a running goal is to follow a training program that matches your current level of fitness and build from there. You will progress faster and reach your goals more quickly and with less risk of injury and burn-out.
- Make it stick: Do a personal inventory of your activity. Match your current activity level to the first few weeks of the training program. Less is more in the first month of training.
Break it Down
Break your resolution into a few smaller, more digestible pieces (check points) throughout the year. For instance, start with a 10-week run-walk program on your journey to learning to run continuously. It is a smaller and more achievable goal and will lead to the next goal of running the race.
- Make it stick: Set one goal for spring (5K) and one more for the fall (losing 15 pounds). Connect the two with smaller mini-goals to get you to the first, then the second.
Let Your Goals Evolve
Change takes time. Getting active and losing weight are fantastic goals, but they take time. Put your mini-goals into your calendar and focus on one at a time. Be patient and persistent. There will be ups and downs; but if you stick with it and stay on target you will reach the next check point.
- Make it stick: Stay motivated by keeping a log or diary and look back every few weeks to see your progress. You may not notice change over a few days, but a few weeks makes a big difference. Register to receive the Active.com running newsletter to stay motivated.
Treat yourself to a massage or special gift when you reach a mini-goal. It is a great way to stay motivated and celebrate reaching the next checkpoint.
- Make it stick: Put your major—and mini—goal somewhere you can see it daily.
Surround Yourself With Support
Join a group, program or club. Tell everyone you know about your goals. You'll have a built-in motivational source, plenty of friends to chat with along the way and someone to get you going when you're not inclined.
- Make it stick: Invite your support team to celebrate reaching your mini-goals. Positive reinforcement goes a long way in staying on track.
Happy trails?event to add to your calendar.