Committing to Fitness in 2014 - Infographic

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Each year sees a surge of individuals renewing their focus on personal fitness and eyeing ambitious achievements in the year ahead. Despite this early enthusiasm, statistics suggest that only a limited percentage will successfully change their health habits.

Committing to fitness in 2014

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Why have fitness goals?

Many of us commit to fitness goals every New Year’s Eve. In fact, losing weight was the most common New Year’s resolution in 2014, and staying fit and healthy wasn’t far behind, taking fifth place.Why do we do it?

There are a number of excellent reasons for getting in shape. Some of our most common reasons range from improving physical appearance to reducing stress and boosting social interaction, according to Psychology Today.

Other good reasons to work out include better overall physical and mental health, more energy throughout the day and improved sleep.

How likely are we to succeed?

Unfortunately, the average person who commits to a healthier lifestyle in the New Year is about as likely to give up as continue. After the first week, only about three-fourths of people keep going to the gym. After one month, this number drops to 64 per cent, and after six months more than half of people have given up their goal.

People who start younger have a better shot at changing their lifestyles for the better. Among people in their 20s, 39 per cent succeeded in the long-term.  Those over the age of 50, however, only had a 14 per cent chance of accomplishing their resolutions.

How can we improve our chances?

Choosing a realistic goal is the most important thing that you can do to improve the chances of keeping your New Year’s resolution, according to PsychCentral. Losing 50 pounds by the end of January sounds appealing, but it isn’t particularly likely. Losing the same 50 pounds over the course of six months might just be possible.

It is also important to pick specific goals that include behaviors – like eating healthy and going to the gym on a schedule that you set out. If you choose behaviors that you enjoy, you are also more likely to stick to them. If you hate running, but don’t mind riding your bicycle for example, choose the bicycle. Your results might not come as quickly, but better late than never.

Logging your progress, recruiting your friends and family to hold you accountable and accepting setbacks are also good ways to make sure that you continue striving for your health goals.