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We all start the year off full of ambition and energy. Determined that This Year is the one where we’re finally going to pick up good habits and kick bad ones.

Year after year, we set resolutions around weight loss, exercise, giving up smoking or being better with money – all the things we tend to worry about at 3am (just me?). But what we tend to forget is that when the clock hits midnight, we’re still the same person, with the same habits, thought patterns, busy lives, and, let’s be honest – excuses (still just me?).

The secret to joining the successful 8% is setting goals that fit you.

Firstly – making them achievable. Yes, it’s pleasant to go for a run on a warm, light summer’s evening, but probably not quite so appealing in the middle of August when it’s pouring. And Dark. And you’re tired. Be realistic about what’s going to work for you.

The other part of the secret is not just achievable, but also; progress in manageable steps. If your last serious commitment to diet and exercise was Year 11 cross-country, magically achieving a commitment to run 3 times a week right away is, possibly, yeah Nah. So maybe aim to start at One Tree Hill level and gradually build to your Everest.

The good people at the World Health Organisation have realised this too. Like us at the Y, they’re moving with the times (yes, we know the song, no, we don’t play it at meetings), and have changed their recommendations. Their recommendations focus on ‘being active’, in the ways that works for you. If you’re not going to achieve 30 minutes every day (which, not everyone is) – how about starting with ONE decent workout a week? Or, rather than ‘be better with money’, start with ‘take some extra time to decide before you buy something’ – maybe those yellow jandals aren’t quite as cool 24 hours later (guilty).

So this year, rather than assigning your new year’s resolution to January’s motivated (and imaginary) you – give them to your real, honest self. And be part of that 8%.

To help you achieve your 2020 fitness goals, we're giving away a free year's membership each week in January. Keep an eye out on our facebook page to see if you're a winner

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