What I Know about Resolutions


I am a New Years Resolutions person! For my entire life, I have made resolutions. Early on, they were ridiculous and like a treadmill at the gym on January 5, they started fast and furious only to slow to a pathetic crawl weeks later. My resolution game has certainly evolved over my career. Seeing the New Year’s boom through the lens of a trainer and coach teaches you quite a bit.


On a personal note, I am motivated to make the best of my 2021 season. I will not let the disappointment and subsequent tortilla chip frenzy of 2020 happen again. So, I took an honest look at myself. And as I sat there on day 2 in my oversized hoodie and sweatpants, I said ENOUGH! I definitely have big picture goals but improving my body composition is the very first thing I need to tackle to make this happen.


That was a few weeks ago, and since then I’ve spent time (yes, weeks) establishing realistic goals for myself, strategizing my year, plotting out my plan, and adjusting my mindset to mentally prepare for the work ahead of me. And THAT is what a resolution should look like. It’s a big goal guided by smaller goals, built on the foundation of a solid plan


Here’s what I know about making and keeping resolutions (aka goals):


Find your WHY. Why do you want to do this? What is your internal motivation for this goal? Finding your why might take some introspective thought and self-awareness, but it’s critical to success. Your why becomes the compass that keeps your course, especially during a challenging commitment. Your why will provide stability and direction, especially when things feel monotonous, overwhelming or stressful and you want to bail.


KISS: Keep it Simple, Stupid. I know that’s not very nice, but it’s TRUE! Your goals and subsequent plan do not need to be complicated. In fact, the simpler, the better. I love it when an athlete comes to me with a big, fat juicy goal. It’s glorious to think big as long as we realize that we should start small. Keep your goals and actions manageable and realistic and let time do its thing. Small changes over time lead to monumental results.


Just start. The only impossible journey is the one you never begin. Your goal may be so big and so juicy that you can not even wrap your head around it ever coming true. Here’s the truth – it won’t happen tomorrow, or next week or maybe even this year.


I love this quote, “if given 5 hours to cut down a tree, I will spend the first hour sharpening the blade”. Begin with your plan, set yourself up for success. Start shifting the mindset and building the support you need to succeed. Planning and prep build powerful inertia towards the change you seek.


I seriously just spent 3 weeks eating Christmas cookies while plotting my clean eating nutrition strategy for 2021 (not a recommended approach). I just knew I wasn't there yet. I wasn't quite ready to jump into the commitment, but my planning and preparation gave me the inspiration to start making real changes. And I'm ready!


Be flexible. If 2020 reminded us of anything it’s that “life is like a box of chocolates” (only minus the deliciousness). Unforeseen circumstances can get in the way of our best laid plans, so we must remain flexible and adjust along the way.


A coach I follow recently said, “we are like the seasons. We ebb and flow through peaks and valleys of energy." I love this. As a coach, we prescribe zones, efforts and paces for our athletes, but sometimes it’s just not there. Maybe you can’t hit that pace for weeks. It’s okay, we can adjust the plan. Too often in life when we hit a roadblock or miss the target, we completely toss the goals. Instead, just tweak it and keep moving forward.


Don’t do it alone. If there’s one thing you can do right now to lock-in your goals potential, it’s to go tell someone. Surround yourself with supportive people. One thing I love about endurance racing is the community. Lean into your community, whether it is a training buddy, accountability partner, a friend offering honest perspective or the professional guidance from a coach, find people to give you support.


Do you have a goal to get your nutrition and consistency back on track? We have a 21 Jumpstart Challenge program to do just that. I want to be very upfront that this is not a weight loss contest. Instead it’s a deep dive into the elements of nutrition for you as an athlete. We will talk about overall health, eating habits, and how to fuel your workouts. Plus, lots more.


We will not count calories, and there will be no “diet” involved. There is no specific program to follow, no rules, no big contest. I only threw “Challenge” in there because it’s an intriguing, fun word. I am not going tell you exactly what to eat. It’s important that you figure that out for yourself.


I will give you science-based proven guidance. I will give you real-life tips, things that I will be following along with myself. I will help you get back on track or maybe learn what your track looks like. We will talk deeply about how eating properly will make you a better athlete, give you more energy, better sleep, improved performance and heightened self-confidence – all while we are putting these tips into practice. I will be your cheerleader, your accountability, your sounding board. I am not selling anything other than my coaching services.


If you are looking to change your body composition, we will kick off by obtaining your metrics and will track progress throughout the 12 weeks. You will receive weekly emails and loads of information and accountability via our Facebook Group, where we will have daily check-ins. This is not a contest, but since everyone loves prizes, there will certainly be goodies for those who stay engaged. Honestly, this won’t work if you are not engaged. You get out what you put in.


Want to learn more? Check out our 21 Jumpstart Challenge page and reach out if you have questions.

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© 2021 by Stuart Coaching: Partners in Training. Grand Rapids, Michigan IRONMAN Certified Running, Biking, Triathlon Coaching, Personal Training 

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