All The Reasons Your Fitness Goals Don't Stick (and How To Fix It)

If you find yourself having thoughts like “I’ve tried everything and nothing works” or “I don’t know how other people do it, because I can’t”, then you might need to read this. Most of you lacking the results you’ve been dreaming of for so long are doing at least one of the following things wrong and you might not even realize it! So, believe in yourself a little more, fix some of these things that are holding you back, and watch yourself flourish. There’s nothing wrong with YOU, the secret is all in how you approach your goals. Thankfully, you can change that at any time – even today! 

You're not being realistic.
It's easy to start the new year, or even a new week, and have all the motivation in the world to go from zero to 100 with your diet and exercise. Unfortunately, for many people (especially beginners) this isn't a sustainable way of approaching a goal. Your motivation can only last for so long until you crash and burn out of exhaustion or your schedule changes. Choose a way of eating and exercising that makes sense for your level of experience and your lifestyle. When you learn how to be realistic about what your body, mind, and schedule can handle, then you set yourself up for success rather than the inevitable burn out. Start with small, reachable goals and grow from there.

You’re not being patient.
This one is huge. You’ve heard it over and over before that you have to “trust the process”, but you have a big reunion or event happening in three weeks and you need to change your body within the next 21 days. Or, you’ve been doing SO GOOD for 30 days and you still look basically the same. Newsflash: it might take a little longer than that, so don’t give up so soon. If you’re eating right and keeping up with an active lifestyle, it is scientifically IMPOSSIBLE for you to fail at whatever your goal may be. You must give yourself time and give your body some grace. Wrap your head around the fact that you’re in this for the long haul, and trust that your body can get there in time. Patience and consistency go hand-in-hand, so keep doing what you’re doing and keep trusting that process. There should be no rush, only trust that every day you’re getting a little bit better, and every day those little bits add up. Brick by brick.

You’re not doing anything you like.
You should – on some level – enjoy what you’re doing to better yourself. If you loathe your current fitness routine, you should understand you don’t have to. Getting in shape doesn’t have to be a miserable experience! Don’t get me wrong, it requires hard work, but it shouldn’t be the worst part of your day every day. When you are using a method that you hate – may it be in your diet or in your exercise – your chance at making this a long-lasting lifestyle change is extremely slim. If you’re eating Whole 30 and it makes you feel dead inside… maybe try another way of eating. If you’re taking a group fitness class and you don’t like being around other people… maybe try working out one-on-one with a personal trainer. There are so many ways to reach your goals, so don’t be afraid to mix it up and try something new! This is not a one-size-fits-all thing. Take a yoga class, go on a bike ride, learn Olympic Weightlifting, do SOMETHING new until you find one thing that’s at least a little bit fun for you!

You’re not eating properly.
As my dad has been saying since I was a little girl… “you can’t eat a donut and crap broccoli.” Isn’t that such a lovely visual? Well, it’s disgusting, but it’s true. You cannot eat carelessly and expect to have a body that looks like you care a lot. You can't out-work a terrible diet. Whatever results you get out of your diet is a direct result of the work you put into it. So, educate yourself a little bit on how to eat, and start caring! Whether you’ve been under-eating or over-eating, you’re hindering your progress and not doing your hard work in the gym any justice. A few key points of eating properly are: prepare ahead of time for what you’ll eat that day, learn the importance of each macronutrient, eat real foods as much as you can, and understand how much food your body needs to function properly. If you need help, I can help you here.

You’re not pushing yourself.
You’re technically doing everything you’re supposed to do, but at some point it stopped being so difficult. If you’re working out and eating correctly, but you stopped seeing some results after a while, there’s a very good chance that your body has adapted to what you’re doing and is no longer progressing like you want it to. I know I said you should enjoy what you do, but no matter what it should feel like HARD WORK. Since it’s the gym metaphor I can relate to best: if you’re lifting weights and you have been shoulder pressing the same 15lb dumbbells for months, it’s time to step it up to the 20’s, even if you can’t get as many reps at first. You should be utilizing progressive overload and adding volume to your workouts by increasing at least one of the following: weight, sets, reps. You cannot keep doing the same workouts without increasing the intensity or load of the workouts and expect to keep improving. If you’re into yoga or group fitness classes, take away some of the modifications you’re using and start doing things that are harder than what you’re used to. Push yourself until what you’re doing feels hard again.

I’m no scientist, but I’m about 99.9999% sure this is why most people who wish they were yielding better results aren’t experiencing success yet. Take it from me, a girl who used to avoid hard work like the plague and didn’t believe in herself… you have EVERYTHING that it takes to succeed and more! The human body is insanely malleable and it is capable of so much growth and change. You just have to find that sweet spot between having fun and working hard, and go for it.