Why December is the best time to get started on fitness
As usual, we'll be seeing a lot of marketing for diets or workout programs once Christmas is over. It's an endless cycle many go through- spending January trying to burn off the excess calories picked up over the holidays.
Most people look at December as a complete write off in terms of fitness and diet due to the increase in social obligations or a lack of time. Even fewer would look at the holiday season as a good time to start a new diet or fitness regimen.
There is obviously some truth to December being a tougher month to maintain our health and wellness goals, but the truth is that the obligations and stress of the holidays are much closer to what we go through in any month than we realize; the holidays are often just another in a long line of excuses to delay getting started!
They also serve as a convenient excuse to fall off a program or failing to achieve goals- but the reality is that if you can't make something work in December, you're probably not going to make it work in any other month!
December is the perfect test month
It's possible, perhaps probable that December is the toughest month of the year for fitness. Operating under that assumption, it actually makes far more sense to test the feasibility of a new lifestyle over the holidays.
Why? Because making a diet or a workout program successful has very little to do with being able to maintain it when things are perfect. When you're stress free, things are running smoothly at work or with the kids, money isn't an issue, etc, it's relatively easy to stick with something.
But how often do we really have all these things going at the same time? Whether we're a billionare or working at Walmart, chances are there's some element of our lives that's draining us. There's always problems or obligations popping up, there's always bad food close by and there's always things that can stir up negative emotions (as the holidays do for a lot of people).
So if you want to really see how feasible your new program is, launch that thing Dec 1st, or even better, today! Start during the most excuse filled month of the year.
Even though, as discussed, December is much close to normal than we realize, there's a big psychological barrier where we've built it up so much that achieving dietary or fitness goals over the holidays can give you a huge boost going forward! If you can control your intake of junk food or alcohol or exercise when the world is giving you a pass not to, you'll be in excellent position to make this work the rest of the year.
Any program or big diet switch is probably not going to work if it can't pass the "stress test" of the holidays. Many of them are overly ambitious and don't take the normal excuses to be undisciplined that life offers into account- as the ultimate excuse month, December can be a much better test for how things are going to go than launching in January when your body and mind is desperate for a break from overindulging.
And practically speaking, much nicer to start a new program when the gyms are quiet and you have a little privacy to try new things. You'll also get way more attention and help from gym staff, personal trainers etc during December than any other month. It's also nice to just get out in front of things and enjoy the holidays without Jan. 1st hanging over your head, knowing every bite you take is going to make it harder.
Don't wait to get started- just make room for a couple days where you might eat a little too much or have last minute obligations to attend to.
Sounds like every other month of the year!
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