We have a double whammy this week – yesterday was Blue Monday and it’s also the week when people are more likely to give up their New Year’s resolutions.  According to YouGov, only a quarter of people keep their New Year’s resolutions.  If your resolution was to take more exercise and get fitter, lockdown is making that even harder.  And the weather in the UK doesn’t help either.  But don’t grab the duvet and bury your head, there are ways to motivate yourself to stick to your resolutions.

Here are my tips:

  1. Choose exercise that you enjoy.  If you don’t enjoy it, you won’t keep it up.  It doesn’t have to be the gym or running – it could be dancing, gardening, cycling, walking, kicking a ball around, juggling, yoga – whatever you fancy.
  2. Just do it.  This sounds daft, but it works.  Don’t think about it.  If you look outside and start thinking “it’s wet, it’s cold”, you won’t do it.  Put it in your diary and do it whatever.
  3. Make it easy to start.  If you have to search the house looking for your trainers or your gloves and hat, you’ll give up.  Leave everything you need by the door, so you can grab and go. 
  4. Set yourself up for success.  If your goals are too hard, you will give up on them.  Set yourself small goals – such as getting outside every day – and even if it is only for 10 minutes, you will succeed.  That will encourage you to do it again.  Success breeds success.
  5. Find someone to do it with.  If you have an arrangement to exercise with someone else, you are more likely to stick to it and exercise for longer.  If you can’t meet people, take an online exercise class. 

We know that being outside and taking physical exercise is good for our mental health as well as for our bodies.  Maybe this is the year when you can become one of the 24% of people who do stick to their resolutions!