“An obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one’s actions”.
It is the missing link that is needed for our fitness goals and desires to become our realities and accomplishments. Lacking accountability is a common fitness setback; You want to be healthy, fit, and to feel good, but you struggle with actually DOING it and furthermore, sticking with it.
Here are my top tips on how stay accountable towards your fitness goals:
1. Determine your SMART Fitness Goals
Making concrete and specific fitness/health goals are crucial to success. Goals are what drive us to action and make change! Goals not only help keep you accountable, but they will help keep you motivated and focusing on progress and positive change.
Smart goals are: Specific-Measurable-Attainable-Realistic-Timely
2. Make your FIT Plan
Once you have determined your goals, it is time to create your own Fitness Plan. Having goals without plan is like having a full tank of gas in your car but no map. You have the desire, but no correct path to get there!
Your Fit “Prescription” should be tailored to your needs and goals. Every body is unique! Be realistic; take a good look at your schedule, fitness level, etc and go from there. Your plan should be detailed, personalized, attainable, yet challenging and promote change. Don’t be afraid to ask for help!
3. Get Visual and Write it out
This is a very important step in order to create Self-Accountability; the more times we visually see our goals and our plan, the more likely we will DO IT! Writing out your goals, workout schedule, meal plans, etc. will create a personal commitment and “promise”. You wouldn’t want to break a “contract”, right? Reflect back to the definition of accountability above: “the obligation and willingness…” The desire and willingness to get fit is created during your goal setting, and writing it out creates an obligation to follow through 🙂
Do what works best for you! I suggest:
- Posting your fitness goals in multiple places (your desk, fridge, work, dresser, purse, phone, etc). The more times you see it, the more you will be reminded!
- Create a detailed “fitness and health” calendar. Make your workouts and food prep time as “appointments” during your week just like you would for work meetings, family events, etc.
- Create a daily or weekly fitness checklist; every time you complete a workout, eat a healthy meal, take your supplements, etc., cross it off! It can be very motivating to see how much you can “cross off” and to keep progressing.
- Pick a favorite motivational quote to put with your fitness goals/schedule. Some of my favorites:
“You focus your mind to train your body and the changes that begin to take place impact your mind as well. Dream it, believe it, and you will achieve it.”
“If it is important to you, you will find a way. If not, you’ll find an excuse.”
“Make the most of yourself, for that is all there is of you.”
4. Tell Family and Friends
Sharing your fitness goals and new schedule with others will help them help you! When you tell others about your plan, you will be more likely to stick with it when they will ask you about your progress. They can also be a positive support system for you when you are feeling discouraged or lacking motivation. Yes, there will be people that unfortunately will NOT be supportive. Remember, these are YOUR goals…Do what is right and healthy for YOU even if it others might not agree or understand.
5. Find an Accountability Partner
Seek out a (supportive) friend, a fellow gym member, or how about a personal trainer or coach…Yes, I CAN HELP! A fitness professional can not only provide you with accountability but also education and motivation to achieve a fit lifestyle. A fitness coach can help set up an individualized fitness plan based on your needs, goals, schedule, and background, and can help you with the physical and mental accountability needed to move forward. Setting up sessions with a personal trainer will ensure that a consistent workout regime…not to mention someone who will be looking over your food journal! 🙂
6. Set short term progress markers
Long term goals can sometimes feel daunting, overwhelming, and easy to lose the consistency and drive…when you have several months to reach your goal, “What’s the rush? Missing one workout won’t kill me…this cheat meal won’t set me off…”But we all know that is a slippery slope right back to unhealthy habits.
Doing short term (weekly, bi-monthly, monthly) accountability “markers” can ensure that you are making progress and moving forward. Some examples:
- Weekly weigh-ins
- Bi-monthly/monthly body fat calculations
- Bi-monthly/monthly full body measurements
- Food journaling (to be assessed weekly)
- Weekly progress photos
These can be done with your accountability coach and/or fitness professional. Setting up these short term progress markers will be a good indication of your progress and if your plan needs any changes. This will also keep you motivated, as you see your body changing! 🙂
I am available for private appointments to discuss personalized fitness and health coaching to help keep YOU accountable and devise your individualized fitness plan. Please contact me if you have any questions! 🙂