Sustaining Momentum: How to Keep Your Health and Fitness Goals and Resolutions on Track. Hutton Health

Sustaining Momentum: How to Keep Your Health and Fitness Goals and Resolutions on Track

29th January 2024

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As the new year begins, countless individuals seize the opportunity to establish fresh goals and embrace healthier habits. However, the initial surge of enthusiasm that accompanies the start of the year can dwindle over time.

According to a Forbes survey conducted in October 2023, 48% of people stated ‘fitness’ as their top priority in 2024. Each year, people around the world set New Years Resolutions and goals based around health, fitness and weight loss. 

A typical fitness cycle often looks like this:

You decide it’s time to lose weight and get the body you’ve always wanted, so you begin to pursue your fitness goals with enthusiasm. The New Year is a common time for people to pursue fitness, health and weight loss goals with the ‘New Year, New You’ and view of the opportunity for a fresh start.

Suddenly, an obstacle appears; work is very busy or overwhelming; you get sick and are unable to start your diet; the temperature drops; the social calendar is more enticing than the diet or exercise routine; or you realise that your four-workouts-every-week goal is too demanding for your normal schedule.

Struggling to lose any weight, perhaps even gaining some, you give up and feel like a failure.

You gradually revert to your old habits and before long you are back to square one, feeling stuck in a body that you don’t feel comfortable in.

Commons reasons people don’t succeed with their health, fitness and weight loss goals

Commons reasons people don’t succeed with their health, fitness and weight loss goals:

Unrealistic Expectations 

Many individuals set overly ambitious fitness or weight loss goals as part of their New Year's resolutions, setting themselves up for disappointment. According to a study published in the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, unrealistic expectations are associated with lower adherence to weight loss interventions.

Setting achievable, gradual goals increases the likelihood of success and helps maintain motivation over time.

Download Hutton Health’s free goal setting workbook!


Lack of Specificity 

Vague or generalised resolutions, such as "get fit" or "lose weight," often lack the specificity needed for effective goal-setting. Research from the American Psychological Association suggests that setting specific, measurable, and time-bound goals enhances the likelihood of success.

Plan for success: Individuals who define clear objectives are better equipped to create actionable plans and monitor progress, increasing their chances of achieving their resolutions.


Inadequate Planning and Preparation 

Failure to plan and prepare is a common reason for not achieving fitness resolutions. A study in the British Journal of Health Psychology emphasizes the importance of planning in goal attainment.

Plan for success: Individuals who invest time in creating a detailed plan, including workout schedules and meal preparation, are more likely to overcome obstacles and stick to their resolutions.

Download Hutton Health’s free meal planner.


Lack of Social Support 

A study published in the Journal of Behavioural Medicine highlights the significance of social support in achieving health-related goals.

Plan for success: Individuals with supportive social networks, such as friends, family, or workout buddies, are more likely to succeed in their fitness resolutions.

Those lacking encouragement and companionship may struggle to stay motivated, making it crucial to involve others in their fitness journey.

Hutton Health offers 4 online workouts each week and includes a supportive group of women in a community embarking on their health and fitness journey as part of the monthly membership.


Failure to Address Emotional Factors 

Emotional and psychological factors play a significant role in health and fitness goals. Stress, emotional eating, and self-esteem issues can undermine resolution success.

Research in the International Journal of Behavioural Nutrition and Physical Activity suggests that interventions addressing emotional factors contribute to better weight loss outcomes. Ignoring the emotional aspect of behaviour change can lead to self-sabotage and hinder progress in achieving fitness resolutions.

Plan for success: It's essential to recognise and address emotional barriers to create a sustainable path to success.

Why is it important to set goals and intentions for a successful fitness and health journey?

Why is it important to set goals and intentions for a successful fitness and health journey?

Setting clear and achievable intentions plays a pivotal role in attaining success in health and fitness endeavours.

When I have set a goal in my fitness endeavours, it has helped me commit to a training plan, which provides added motivation to turn up on the days when I am lacking the energy or drive to exercise. Following a plan allows me to celebrate each workout and each time I push myself out of my comfort zone, providing the intrinsic reward I need to continue pushing myself toward my goal.

 When individuals establish specific health and fitness goals—such as "losing weight sustainably" or "building muscle mass gradually"—they provide themselves with a roadmap, guiding their actions and decisions. These intentions serve as motivational beacons, instilling a sense of purpose and direction in one's fitness journey.

Setting well-defined intentions fosters commitment and consistency in adhering to a structured plan, ultimately enhancing the likelihood of achieving desired results in a sustainable manner. SMART goals lay the groundwork for a focused and purpose-driven approach to health and fitness, promoting long-term success and personal satisfaction in their wellness journey.

Download Hutton Health’s free goal setting workbook!


Beyond Resolutions: Maintaining Fitness Motivation

Keeping momentum in health and fitness goals is the key for long term success. Many people start their health and fitness journey full of energy and motivation but have a more difficult time staying committed to their fitness goals all year round.

Beyond Resolutions: Maintaining Fitness Motivation

5 tips to maintain your fitness motivation to reach your health and fitness goals:

Here are 5 tips to maintain your fitness motivation to reach your health and fitness goals

Cultivate Intrinsic Motivation 

Instead of relying solely on external goals or New Year's resolutions, dig deeper to discover what truly motivates you on a personal level. Whether it's the joy of movement, the sense of accomplishment, or improved mental well-being, finding intrinsic motivations fosters a more enduring commitment to fitness.

Many of my clients find motivation in keeping up with their families and friends. One of my clients found her ultimate success when she was able to join her son for a walk along the seaside. What is your biggest motivation?

Reflect on the deeper reasons behind your desire to stay fit, and let those reasons guide your journey.

Diversify Your Routine 

Keep your workouts fresh and engaging by incorporating a variety of exercises. Monotony can lead to boredom and decreased motivation. Explore different forms of exercise, such as yoga, strength training, cardio, or recreational sports. Trying new activities not only keeps things interesting but also challenges your body in different ways, promoting overall fitness.

Find out more about types of exercise and elements of a good workout plan.

Set Process-Oriented Goals 

Shift the focus from outcome-based goals to process-oriented goals. Instead of fixating on a specific weight or body shape, concentrate on building healthy habits and consistently following your fitness routine.

Celebrate small victories, like completing a challenging workout or sticking to your schedule, as these achievements contribute to long-term success and maintain motivation.

Prioritise Recovery and Self-Care 

Recognise the importance of rest and recovery in maintaining motivation. Overtraining can lead to burnout and decreased enthusiasm for exercise. Incorporate rest days into your routine, practice proper sleep hygiene, and indulge in activities that promote relaxation and well-being.

A holistic approach to fitness, including adequate recovery, ensures sustained motivation by preventing physical and mental fatigue.

Find out more about the healing power of rest and why it is important for your health.

Create a Supportive Environment 

Surround yourself with a positive and supportive environment that encourages your fitness journey. Share your goals with friends or family who can provide encouragement and celebrate your successes. Join fitness communities or online groups where you can connect with like-minded individuals.

A supportive network can offer motivation during challenging times and create a sense of accountability, making it more likely for you to stay committed to your fitness goals.

Your mind is a powerful tool that plays an integral part of any weight loss journey. Focus on improving your mindset to improve your health and lose weight in a sustainable way.

Looking to improve your mindset? Check out 'Unlocking your Unlimited Potential'


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