BENNETT: How to create and keep your New Year’s resolution

By on January 5, 2018
Kin Corner is a monthly feature on movement, exercise and rehabilitation written by a Katrina Bennett, a registered kinesiologist.


by Katrina Bennett

Do you wish you were more fit and healthy? Have you set goals in the past that just didn’t work out?

According to Stats Canada 62 per cent of men and 46 per cent of women are overweight or obese. When broken down by province British Columbians did have the lowest rate — which is great — but what can we do to become more fit and healthy in 2018?

(Photo courtesy of Jasmine Pinto).

At the beginning of each year, the thoughts and whispers of New Year’s Resolutions surround us and although we start with the best of intentions, 25 per cent of us break our resolutions within the first week and 80 per cent within the first eight weeks.

So what makes a New Year’s Resolution so hard to keep? I believe it comes down to three important questions. One, is your goal realistic? Two, do you have clear action steps laid out to achieve your goal? Three, have you created a motivational climate for success?

Realistic is defined as having or showing a sensible and practical idea of what can be achieved or expected. So, the first step in setting a fitness goal is to look back and see what you are currently doing and what you were able to achieve over the last six months to a year. How much exercise did you complete? If your goal is to lose weight — how much weight have you lost? If the answer is very little or zero to both questions then starting with a small goal and progressing to a bigger one is your best chance for success.

The second step is the key for any goal-setting plan. We must lay out clear action steps to achieve the goal. What daily and weekly steps can you take that will bring results? If you want to lose weight then eating healthy and exercising regularly will likely be a part of the plan. Start with something that is a little bit more than what you have been doing in the past and work on that for one month. Review your progress and commend yourself for your effort and progress. Be kind to yourself and your motivation will increase. 

There is no need to guilt trip yourself. You simply need to find something you really want in your life and then chart a course that is long enough for you to achieve it. If you only had one responsibility in life — your health — then you would definitely be able to achieve this goal more quickly but the fact of the matter is that we all have many important facets of our life — spiritual, physical, mental and emotional. We carry a heavy load so small changes are the best way to create long-term, lasting change.

Finally, do you have a plan to overcome barriers to success? I recommend that from the very beginning we set up a motivational climate for success. There are many tips available to help you overcome your barriers to exercise. Here are four of my favorites.

One, have enough workout clothing for a week’s worth of workouts. Have them washed and ready at the beginning of each week and lay out a clean set the night before each workout. Two, create a pumped up motivational playlist to get you going. Music is a powerful force so use it to your advantage to get you started. Three, record your workouts in a training log. Make it simple — date, time, description of your workout such as upper body, lower body or core and how you felt after you completed the session. Four, only announce your success after you’ve completed your workout and not before.

Ralph Waldo Emerson said it well in one of my favourite quotes: “That which we persist in doing becomes easier for us to do — not that the nature of the thing is changed but that our power to do is increased.” As you persist at your fitness goal this year you will become stronger and it will get easier — one day at a time.


For more information please visit our website: Katrina Bennett, RK Registered Kinesiologist and owner of Nicola Valley Kinesiology.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *