I always guessed that a large part of the population never achieve their New Year goals year after year. What I didn't expect was to find out that the number is a whooping 92%, according to scientific research by the University of Scranton. That means out of 100 people, only 8 will achieve what they set out to do.
Research also shows that 95% of New Year goals are fitness related. From weight loss to running a full marathon, a stunning 43% will give up on their fitness goals before February begins. No time. No motivation. No results. Excuses. Bah humbug.
My belief is that your "why" must be stronger than your excuses. Your "why" will be the reason that'll pull you through the times when you lack motivation. Your "why" will be that push factor when you don't see results for a few weeks. And in order to achieve your goals, you need to begin with why.
Your "Why" Is A Long-Term Play
One common mistake people make is to think their "why" is short term. 1 month. 3 months. 1 year. Why do you want to achieve your fitness goal? To look good in a dress? To wear that shirt you always wanted? To get more followers in your social media profile? How about so you can keep moving without any assistance when you're 65? To be able to pay less medical bills when you're 70? Or be able to attend your grandchild's wedding when you're 80?
Fitness is a life long journey. It isn't just working out to lose weight. It isn't just working out to look good so you can get more followers and more likes in your social media profiles. When you look at it long term, it takes away the pressure and disappointments that come with not seeing results for a while, or when you lose your sense of motivation.
It's a long-term play. How do you want to be 10, 20, 30 years down the road. Very much like financial planning, you want to look at how you want to be like when you retire. Then you work backwards to understand the kinds of movement and exercises you want to do in order to achieve that. Strength, cardio, flexibility and mobility. How much time and effort do you need to put in each week to invest yourself and your health.
Fitness isn't a YOLO movement. If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail. People who don't plan won't get the results and fail to achieve their fitness goals.
Your "Why" Is Personal
It has to be "because I..." and not because of social pressures, what your boyfriend thinks or what your wife wants you to do. This has to be what you want or what you need. It is for you to decide. It is why you want it. It is why you need it. Your parents can tell you what to do. Your doctor can advice you what to do. Your friends can beg you to do it. Ultimately, the decision lies within you. Your foundation is sealed when your "why" is personal. Nothing anyone else tells you will be able to sway you from your decision. It is also the beacon that pulls you back when you start to stray.
Your "Why" Is Internal
Intrinsic motivation simply means self-motivated. You do it because you want to do it. You're not swayed by the number of followers or likes you will get on your social media platforms. You're not doing it so that you can fit into a dress. You're not motivated by external factors.
This is possibly the toughest "why" to achieve, and yet the one that rules them all. It requires behavioural change. It requires you to get into a headspace that blocks out all external factors. It requires you to know what you want. Fitness is 20% head knowledge and 80% behavioural. If you know what you have to do, and you do it on your own accord, that's where the magic happens. And if you do it consistently, that's where change begins.