1. Keep the goal the goal.
Better still, re-frame the goal. Break it down into something that is manageable and attainable. Do you want to lose 30 lbs in 2017 OR 1 lb this week? Don't set yourself up for failure by pursuing the lofty goal but rather look for the small wins in achieving the manageable, smarter goal. Losing 1 lb a week is absolutely doable. Small successes will build confidence. Confidence will build consistency. Consistency will yield lasting results.
2. Keep your behaviours and your goals aligned.
You've identified your weekly goal so now what behaviour do you need to change to get there? Remember, big goals require big behaviour changes. Big behaviour changes require big effort. Break it down. Make one small, sustainable behaviour change that is consistent with your goals. Write it down. Put it on your fridge. Do it.
3. Be realistic.
Avoid platitudes such as "new year, new you". You are you. Trying to become a healthier, stronger, fitter version of you is hard. Be honest with yourself; work within your own strengths and limitations. Identify what you are capable of doing each day to make your way down your unique path to change. No single approach works for everyone. Adopt a realistic approach to change that works for YOU.
4. Be flexible and forgiving.
January is a miserable month for many. Based on a date on the calendar - January 1 - we heap, a week or a couple of weeks into January we start struggling and a sense of overwhelming defeat may set in. January is just one month of the year. Changing behaviours is a journey and as on all journeys there is likely to be some turbulence along the way. When turbulence comes it's ok to take your foot off the gas and apply the brakes, if only for a short while. When you're ready, get back on the road. Be flexible. Forgive yourself. Carry on.
5. Be measured in your measuring!
Progress isn't all about numbers. Numbers probably won't make you happier but they can make you feel frustrated and deflated. Changes in exercise and nutrition can have a variety of outcomes - not all of them easy to measure. Improvements in your general health, strength, energy levels, self confidence and pride are all more important than any number!