Updated on January 3, 2017
Welcome to a new year - 2017!
You’ve probably had some time to celebrate, grab a few festive drinks, and reflect on all the fun and exciting things that took place over the past 12 months.
But now it’s time to move forward. 2016 is in the past. And it’s time to grab 2017 by the horns and make some things happen for yourself.
This (updated) post is all about helping you crush your fitness goals this year. We’ve got
5 8 simple (but powerful) tips to help you get the year started on the right foot.
Note from Crossrope
We originally published this blog post at the end of 2015 and we featured five tips to help you stick to your resolutions. Many found the post useful at the time so we’ve gone ahead and updated it with three bonus tips and resources to help you crush your goals in 2017. We really hope you enjoy it!
Challenge Yourself for 30 Days
Before we get into the tips, we want to make sure you’ve had a chance to sign up for our FREE 30 Day New Year Jump Rope Challenge that we’re co-hosting with Bloom to Fit.
We’ve got over $1,000 in cash prizes plus a ton of great resources to give away to help you get a head start on your fitness goals this year.
Just don’t forget to invite your friends!
We Suck at New Years Resolutions
We all know the difficulties with New Year's resolutions.
We're just not very good at sticking to them.
In fact, studies have shown that only 8% of people who commit to a New Year's resolution actually see it through to the end. The other 92% never achieve what they set out to do.
So how do we improve our chances of sticking to our New Year resolutions in the new year?
Here are 8 things you can do differently this year...
1. Set simple goals and commitments
One of the biggest reasons we fail at our resolutions is that we set lofty and unreachable goals. We set resolutions that are just too damn difficult to stick to.
There’s an alternative…
Instead of setting big goals this year, come up with 3-4 small commitments that you know you can stick to.
Here's a simple example to look at...
Instead of setting a big goal like "I want to lose 30lbs by April"...
Set small, simple commitments like this...
Commitment: "I will get up and walk for 30 minutes 3 days a week"
Commitment: "I will stop putting sugar in my coffee."
Commitment: "I will stop drinking Coke."
Don't underestimate the power of these little commitments. When strung together over time, they can lead to some astonishing changes.
And the best part?
Unlike goals, commitments are not results-driven. That means you have control over them. You either do them or you don't. You either go for your 30 minute walk, or you don't. The results are just a byproduct.
You can check out the full guide on goals vs commitments here.
Do This: Come up with 3-4 important commitments that you want to stick to in 2017.
2. Use a (commitment) journal
One of the best ways to keep track of your progress over the year is to use a journal.
And don’t think that journals have to be complicated. In fact, they shouldn’t be. You want to keep them as simple as possible.
Note – simplicity will be a common theme among these tips.
All you need to track is your commitment success rate. Each day, jot down what commitments you completed, what commitments your skipped, and (most importantly) why you skipped them.
Then get in the habit of regularly (once a week) reviewing your journal to see how you did. This mini-reflection period will help you optimize your commitments (and priorities) going forward.
Do This: Get a journal and write out your commitments in it.
3. Track your workouts
While we’re on the topic of journals, one effective way of sticking to your workouts is writing them down.
And, again, it shouldn’t be complicated – simply jot down the date, duration and intensity of the workout, how you felt, and any other important details that you think are worth tracking.
Personally, I like to track workout results so I can see how I’m progressing.
If I do a HIIT workout like this one, I'll write down how long it took me to get through the workout. That way I can re-do it in a few weeks/months and see if I'm improving
Again, simplicity is the name of the game.
Bonus tip – it helps to review your workout journal once a week or so. It will allow you to spot patterns and see progress.
Do This: Get a small workout journal (it can be the same one you use to write your commitments in) and keep tabs on your workouts for the next 2 weeks. Mid-month, go back and review your workouts. Have you progressed?
4. Plan ahead and use a calendar
Another reason people fail at their resolutions is they don’t plan ahead.
How many times have you just tried to wing it? How many times have you said "I'll just go to the gym when I have time" or “when I feel up to it”? How many times have you gone to the gym without knowing exactly what you’re going to do?
We all do it. But while it can work for some, it's not the most effective way at attacking your goals.
Personally, if I want my workouts to be effective and consistent, I need to plan ahead. I need to have everything figured out at least a week ahead (especially on weeks where my schedule is hectic).
Planning makes this easy for me. When my workouts are planned, half of my job is done. All I need to do is go in and do them.
One of the most underrated tools for doing this is the calendar.
Here’s what I like to do –
I use the Google Calendar (it’s free and syncs to my phone). I schedule in all of my workouts for the full week ahead. And I outline almost exactly what I’m going to do for each session before I go into it.
Here’s what the training portion of my calendar looks like for this week specifically:
If I click through to a HIIT session or Strength session, I have the exact details of what I'm supposed to be doing.
For me, what gets planned gets done. Simple.
Note - you don’t have to use a smartphone to do this. An old school mini agenda can do the trick if you can stay on top of it.
Do This: Set up a simple Google Calendar and set up your first week’s (or 2 week's) worth of workouts.
5. Get an accountability partner
It's difficult to do things on your own.
Every journey, no matter how simple in nature, will have bumps and obstacles along the way. That's why you need someone to help you stick through the rough times. You need an accountability partner.
Find someone who has your best interests in mind. Someone you trust. Then simply share your commitments with them.
Tell them what you're trying to accomplish. Ask them to review your journal once every couple of weeks to make sure you're sticking to your commitments.
Most importantly, make sure they will have the courage to tell you when you're falling off the path.
If you don’t have an accountability partner (and even if you do), join our free online jump rope fitness community. We’ve got over 2,000 members in there from all across the world who will help you stay accountable to your goals.
Bonus tip – if you don’t like accountability partners, here’s a trick to keep yourself accountable: set some consequences for yourself if you fail.
I like to do this with some of my commitments where I set consequences for myself if I miss a commitment 3 consecutive times.
What kind of consequence?
That depends on you. It can be monetary (where you have to hand over $$ to your spouse/friend/sibling money/charity you hate OR it can be humiliating - doing something you really wouldn’t be comfortable with).
You can also use a tool like Stickk to automate this process.
Do This: Find your accountability partner and share your commitments with them. If you have trouble finding one, just leave your commitments in the comment section below and we'll reach out to you with encouragement. Or join our free online community today.
6. Start simple
The first step in any journey is almost always the most difficult one.
You’re fighting inertia.
What you need to do is break through that initial barrier by doing the obvious: just get started. The easiest way to do that is to set the bar low and, once again, simplify.
Make it as easy as you can for yourself to get started.
Your first workout doesn’t need to be a 90 minute weight session followed by 30 minutes of cardio. (I hope it never is)
Instead, just go for a 20 minute walk. Seriously - go put your shoes on and go stroll around the neighbourhood for 20 minutes.
Can’t go outside? Grab your Crossrope Starter Set and do 5 rounds of 100 basic jumps.
Done? Congrats – you’ve just done your first workout of the year.
String a couple of simple activities like that together and gradually build up your intensity and workout complexity. Build momentum as you go and you’ll see great things happen.
Do This: If you're having trouble getting started, simplify. And do the workout I just gave you above. Seriously - do it.
7. Build momentum and do it first
This stems right from to the previous point.
Momentum is a very powerful tool that you must leverage. And there are some easy ways to set yourself up for success.
We’ve already talked about simplifying your initial workouts.
But here’s something cool I learned from Tim Ferriss: be in control of your morning routine.
What does that mean?
Let me explain with an example –
Tim proposes that the very first thing you do when you wake up is make your bed. Why? Because it puts you in control. It allows you to “check something off your list” which can be a psychological boost – it let's you get the snowball rolling.
I’ve replicated his method by having a glass of water in the morning. It’s the very first thing I do in the morning (after using the bathroom, of course).
Checking this off my list gets my day started on the right foot, no matter how hectic my schedule is.
So find something that you can "check off" every morning to get your day started with control.
Bonus tip - don’t leave your workout until the very end of the day. That’s often when we’ve depleted our willpower and have little in the tank left (mentally) to get ourselves moving.
Instead, try to do it first or as early in the day as possible.
Do This: come up with one simple thing you can do every morning to get your day started and try to schedule your workouts earlier in the day.
8. Make mistakes, but be consistent
The most important tip I can give you can be summarized in two words:
Be consistent with your commitments and your workouts and you’ll achieve more than you ever thought possible. That’s why we focus on simplicity.
Simplicity breeds consistency.
And if you slip up and fall off track, that’s completely fine. In fact, you should plan for it.
Nobody is perfect. And those who try to be are the ones who often fail at sticking to their resolutions over the long-run. Those are part of the 92%.
Give yourself the freedom to make mistakes because they are part of the journey. Take note of them in your journal and understand what caused them. Then fix them going forward.
Do This: be consistent.
There you have it.
I’ve given you eight (8) simple tips to help you stick to your New Year resolutions going into 2017.
No matter what goals and commitments you set for yourself, make sure to enjoy the journey. Have fun with this stuff. Enjoy every step of it because if there’s anything we’ve learned from this past year, it’s that time flies my friend.
In the comments below, share one or two of your New Year commitments. We'd love to hear what you're setting out to achieve in 2017!