by Tony Gjokaj January 02, 2021 8 min read
New Year, New Us.
Everyone is ready to make big lifestyle changes for the New Year (especially after 2020)... but as always, not everyone is prepared to make significant changes with their lifestyle.
We tend to underestimate our goals because we are completely optimistic and excited for the New Year. Without a coordinated strategy or direction, a lot of us end up failing because we never know how to get there.
In this post, we are going to give you 8 tips to conquer your fitness goals in 2021. After reading this, it is our hope that your mindset will be shifted to conquer your goals.
Let's get after it!
Dropping a few lbs for a wedding has never been enough for anyone. While someone can exercise to achieve this goal, most people typically gain back the weight only to repeat it again.
Personally, I would rather have the lifestyle change to not have to worry about these things.
Why do you fitness? Why do you WANT to exercise?
These things are very important answer to discover what you truly want with your fitness goals.
You should ask yourself some of the following questions:
The more you dive deeper into this, the more you'll realize that there are bigger meanings behind your "why".
When I was in high school, the 'why' I told myself was that I wanted to confidently talk to girls, not be picked on and more.
But the real 'why' for me was that I felt like I had no control of my life and I wanted more out of it (I was severely depressed). I wanted to believe fitness would help me build some self-control and discipline.
It did years later.
Ultimately when you discover your true "fitness purpose", then you just need to constantly remind yourself of it. There will be times when you're not motivated to go in... but that purpose should always be in the back of your mind.
In one of our previous posts about rituals, we mentioned our mornings and evenings are the parts of our day that we have the most control over.
So what I recommend is to block out a time to exercise during the early morning or right after work. If you are having a hard time starting, start by working out for 10-15 minutes at a time.
Whether you have to split it into two time blocks of 30 minutes or one hour session, make it work.
When I am really busy running working on Reforged and other obligations, sometimes I have to split my sessions into two 30-45 minute ones. This allows me to get a good workout in regardless.
Worst case scenario, if you work long hours but have 2 15 minute breaks and one lunch break, try to combine them all into one gym session. Just make sure your boss agrees!
Most of the time when we start to make lifestyle changes for the New Year, we set goals on what we expect to happen or would like to see... an outcome. Most of the time, it's not any clearer than this.
I believe one of the ways to be more successful with your fitness resolutions is to create Process Goals rather than Outcome Goals.
Outcome goals are straightforward. It's a bigger picture goal that isn't under your control because there isn't a path you reach to get there.
Outcome Goal Example: I want to lose 15 lbs for a wedding.
Process Goals are clearer and more defined. It helps you reach the outcome goal by giving you a sense of control.
Process Goal Example: I want to lose 15 lbs in 4 months. This means I will have to drop ~3.75 lbs per month. This means I will have to drop 0.94 lbs per week.
To accomplish this, I need to diet patiently, exercise frequently, sleep well, and monitor my progress.
When prioritizing process goals, you start to enjoy the experience over the chase.
When I want to set goals, it's never just about hitting a 500lb deadlift. For me to get to that, I could train myself to get to that level. To get a 500lb deadlift, I have to go through a phase where I build muscle by training higher reps, then go through a phase where I build strength based on the response I received from the previous phase. Then, I can test my max.
As you can see, the process goals, in my opinion, are the best way to make significant lifestyle changes. Things get clearer and more certain when you create them.
Habits are typically influenced in two ways: through small incremental changes, and modifying your environment.
So in understanding this, I had various methods I would utilize to ensure I don't screw up my fitness goals.
Here are some of them:
Changing your habits is challenging, but understanding how you can hack your habits allows you to get very creative in accomplishing your fitness goals.
Building healthy habits in fitness always starts with small steps. Many of us jump right into it and restrict food groups completely without following small guidelines. Most people fail their resolutions and diets this way.
You should change things by slowly adding things daily, like tracking meals, portion control, make healthier food choices for meals, add an extra exercise, go one more rep, and more.
This will make it significantly easier to make lifestyle changes, as you are not overwhelming yourself in the beginning. You can read more about incremental step strategies by clicking here, or the resource guide banner below.
One of my favorite things I've ever heard is to get 1% better everyday. Because if you're 1% better everyday for 100 days, you're 100% better.
Change your environment. Change your circumstance.
My family is Balkan. I grew up around a big lunch and a gigantic dinner. It's always been a part of my lifestyle, and in understanding this, I was allowed to create a dieting system around my behaviors.
We need to understand that our environment plays a huge part in our fitness lifestyle. Your circumstance and the culture you grew up in plays a huge part on your behavior.
Here are some tips to HACK your environment:
For me to stay with my goals, I always make sure my biggest meals are lunch and post-workout. I typically eat 4-5 meals daily and "skip breakfast" by fasting (if I don't workout in the morning). This personally works for me.
When I first started exercising, my first trainer was horrible. He would always try to flirt with my mom while I was working out. It's hilarious to think about today cuz he'd be like "go do some tricep extensions" and he got paid to do that.
I made zero progress obviously - he wouldn't watch me or hold me accountable. Then he would blame me for lack of progress, but I had zero direction.
My second trainer was honestly the worst and best trainer. He was tough. When I would try to argue with him about some of the physical activity I had to do, he doubled it.
Ultimately he changed me and his training was the catalyst that sparked my fitness journey.
Depending on how much you're willing to put up with, have an accountability partner. Whether it is a trainer or a friend, you need someone who will be tough enough for you to progress.
When I used to coach my brother and his friends, I was tough. I made the workouts tough. I would call them out and embarrass them on social media and everything if they skipped the gym.
"(Name) skipped leg day. What a shocker. COWARD!" - Me, on Facebook
It might be harsh to you, but i'd even tell them they'd owe me $20 if they skipped workouts with me (unless it was an emergency - I have small heart).
Today, they're advanced and elite level powerlifters in their own rights. They're better than me - and that's what I wanted.
Find someone who's tough and will hold you accountable. It will change your life.
For 2 years, I was not motivated to work out whatsoever. My "fitness purpose" was gone... but I was disciplined enough to go regardless. While driving home from work, I always kept a pre workout with me so that I would have to take it. I would be committed to go because my face was flushed and on fire.
Today, I use our pre-workout Catalyst for this reason whenever I'm not motivated to work out (it still happens today)!
With it's generous dose of Beta-Alanine, you most definitely will be fired up for your intense workout sessions.
There it is - 7 tips to get you to dominate your fitness goals in 2021.
While you have these tips ready for your arsenal, we wanted to give you two last tips to conquer your goals.
Some of us fail because we don't start. Others fail because they don't persist.
Do both, make the necessary changes. Build experience and confidence, and change your life.
Fitness is ultimately a part of your lifestyle. You will need to make some sacrifices to accomplish your goals. But the journey itself will change your life for the better.
Do you have any questions or suggestions on the next post you want us to write? Email me at email@example.com and I'll get after it.
Until next time, Legion!
Tony is the Owner of Reforged. He is a PN1 Certified Nutrition Coach and has been in the fitness space for over a decade. His goal is to help millions exercise their way out of depression and anxiety.
by Tony Gjokaj October 07, 2022 4 min read
Men, I know what it is like to be overweight and depressed.
Not having the energy to do anything but relax and sleep.
While relaxation and sleep are incredibly important, they can make us feel like we are not making progress in our lives.
And when depression hits, it’s very difficult to push through with exercise and weight loss.
But did you know that even though it takes time and some effort, you don’t need to get obsessively crazy over it?
In fact, with just a few small adjustments, you can lose weight, fight back against depression, and take your life back.
If you're serious about shedding pounds and pushing away those depression demons, here are five tips that can help get you started.
by Tony Gjokaj September 05, 2022 4 min read
A few weeks ago, my buddy Grant and I talked about nutrition.
We talked about how he's lost over 120 pounds so far with the weight loss progress he's been making.
This is all because he has been making healthier decisions over time.
One of the newest challenges he's facing right now is he's got a new job. He's working 10 to 12 hour days with physical demanding labor.
And what's been happening for him is that he's been super exhausted, he's not motivated to meal prep, he's having trouble trying to sit down and cook foods doesn't have the energy doesn't have the time.
So what I propose is five tips that you can use to live a more on the go fast food healthy eating lifestyle.
by Tony Gjokaj July 27, 2022 4 min read
Have you ever experienced anxiety that drains all of your productive energy?
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting 40 million adults in the US each year.
If you're someone who suffers from anxiety, you know that it can be incredibly debilitating. It can hold you back from some positive experiences and opportunities as a result.
The good news is that there are ways to overcome it!
In this blog post, we will discuss eight best tips for overcoming anxiety, from an expert that has been there themselves!
Sign up to our list and get free access to our 30 day LIFT Your Mood Course and Digital Book!