Without question, there is no denying that improving your health can take a bit of effort, organization, planning and dedication. However, there are ways to make the change easier for yourself by putting plans in place early to avoid setbacks later.

As many of you have probably heard, changes in body composition and health are generally considered 80% diet and 20% exercise, however, there really needs to be a percentage allocated to goal setting and a psychological component. All aspects of these are essential to consider, but we cannot deny that nutrition really is key in changing your shape and health, and in doing so you need to put plans in place to ditch the junk.

You have to want it!

You have to want to change! You can read all the self-help articles, enlist as many people as you like to help, but ultimately, if you have no desire deep down to want to change, it isn’t likely to happen. Even when you’re sure you want to change it’s certainly not easy. Ultimately, the choice is yours.

If you are committed to change it is necessary to put some plans in place to set yourself up for success. Initially, if possible, gain the support of your family and friends who surround you and let them know you want to make a positive change in your health. You will be much more successful if you have the support of loved ones.

Goal setting

It is necessary to set some achievable goals, and research often says you are likely to be 80% more successful if you set yourself one goal at a time. The more you pile on the lower your success rate drops. So be committed to taking the time to change and working on goals you can achieve. For example, you may want to start walking most days of the week, or cut out ‘sweet drinks’ as we say in Guyana. Set a long-term goal, but then break it down into daily and weekly goals that you can achieve – think of them as small pieces in the puzzle, taking one step at a time.

The fast track

To fast track your results, you will need to enlist the help of health professionals who can monitor you and make suggestions that are best suited to your goals and needs. These professionals can include doctors, personal trainers, dieticians, nutritionists and physical therapists. If you have any injuries or medical conditions, it is important to speak and work with your doctor to ensure you are aware of all the implications of changing your lifestyle. You may have to be referred to an accredited exercise physiologist for specialized help.

Mindset

Mindset is a crucial part of success as well, and this can often be your undoing in changing your health. When you start to doubt yourself, you lose motivation or start focusing on negative thoughts. Staying positive and surrounding yourself with positive affirmations, supportive people and focusing on your goals can certainly assist with your success rate.

Finally, don’t beat yourself up if you have a bad day, miss a workout, or overeat. That is life, no one is perfect. Refocus on your goals and continue. Being down on yourself will only produce negativity, which is not beneficial to your overall outcome.

Utilizing some of these strategies can help make your journey a lot smoother and your chances of success a lot higher. That doesn’t mean it will be easy. Change isn’t always easy, but it will be worth it.

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