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Resurrect Your Resolutions: Tips to Keep on Track With Your 2016 Goals

With almost three weeks of January behind us, we’re approaching that time of the year when it’s important to evaluate whether New Year’s resolutions are working. Did you set a training goal for 2016 that you’re having trouble sticking with? It’s not too late to get back on track. “Good planning, making your goals SMART and staying inspired are some of the keys to keeping your goals attainable and the pursuit enjoyable,” says Dr. Christopher Willer, a sports psychiatrist and avid triathlete. Here are three tips to resurrecting your New Year’s resolutions.

Time to plan-177591412Be specific in your planning

According to Willer, resolutions are all about being specific in your planning and changing your patterns accordingly. Setting a goal like becoming a better swimmer or building more core strength means adjusting your schedule to fit the demands of the goal. As you plan your weeks according to work, family and training obligations, be sure to set aside specific blocks of time in the day that are dedicated to your goal. “If you know in advance what you need to do each day to achieve your goal, you are well on your way to meeting it,” he says.

SMART goals

Is your goal realistic? A big reason for New Year’s resolutions dying out is that they aren’t attainable given current goals -103579366 (1)circumstances. “Smart goals are achievable goals. A SMART goal stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results Focused, and Time-bound. A goal of simply racing an Ironman this year may be too big of a New Year’s resolution. However, if you pick a specific race, book the hotel, determine a time you want to finish in and find a good training schedule, all of a sudden you’ve become more specific and your goal becomes more measureable,” he says. He adds that making the goal action-oriented is important, too. Does your goal offer results you can see along the way? For example, if you want a faster bike split and see that the work you’re putting in is leading to higher wattage output in your training sessions, you’re more likely to stick with it.

Don’t lose inspiration

Willer emphasizes the importance of not losing inspiration along the way to achieving your goals. He recommends success -167626995using social media to give yourself constant, positive reminders. “Check out YouTube videos of the race you’re targeting, follow your favourite inspirational athlete on Twitter, or share your athletic dreams with others. This works to nudge you back on the goal action plan on a regular, consistent basis,” he says. He encourages athletes to look at what inspires them and also seek new sources of inspiration. If you remind yourself why you want something, you’ll be more likely to work for it.