You may not quite have hip-hop abs like Shaun T yet, but that hardly means that you haven’t worked hard at the gym and seen some progress along the way. But when you aren’t seeing rapid results (all is not lost if 30 days pass and you have little to show for it, believe us), you can fight the urge to get discouraged by taking the time to recognize the littler victories, and to reward yourself for all the small steps that you’re making towards your final goal. After all, you’re doing much better than the people who are still in their beds saying they’ll start their workout plan tomorrow (wait – didn’t they say that yesterday, too?).
So if you’ve reached any of these milestones below, take a moment to applaud yourself. This is the beginning of a lifelong journey that will make you a happier and healthier person (and who doesn’t want to achieve those levels of success!).
Drinking more water regularly.
Who cares if you can’t gulp down eight glasses of water yet? Besides, drinking eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day is a rumor that’s been going around for decades that hasn’t been supported by any hard evidence. But there are many health benefits associated with water that make drinking more of it a huge plus. With hydration, you can look forward to a better immune system, an increase in energy, removal of toxins, weight loss, and the list goes on from there! So if you’re going from drinking three glasses to intentionally filling your body with five glasses of water a day, you need to add that to your health achievement list.
Avoiding the snooze button.
When you really want to see changes in your health, nothing will stop you – not even the snooze button. In fact, you start getting up before your alarm clock goes off (now that’s progress for a habitual snoozer). So whether you are getting up thirty minutes earlier to prepare your herb-infused water detox or partake in an exercise-induced endorphin release, learning to prepare for mental success is an accomplishment.
Losing your first five pounds.
You don’t have to wait until you go from size 16 to 6 before you start to celebrate your progress. Every excessive pound eliminated is a move in the right direction. So when you notice that you’ve lost your first five pounds, reward yourself! Maybe buy a new top to celebrate, or you let yourself indulge a bit in dessert after dinner. Recognizing the release of your first pound sends a signal to your body to keep making progress.
Doing your first five push-ups.
Push-ups may be the ultimate measure of upper body strength (if you push all equipment to the side). And the stronger your body gets, the more that muscle will help you zap away fat. So when you’re able to successfully do five push-ups (with proper form, that is), you have to give yourself a huge pat on the back. It’s a representation of your commitment and consistency to become a better you. And trust us, once you hit five, you’ll be racking those push-ups up before you know it.
Completing your first 5k.
Three months ago, you probably couldn’t run two blocks without gasping for air and now you’re signing up for a 5K. A 5K is equivalent to 3.1 miles, which, for anybody who has not always been the best runner or the most avid fan of the workout, is a pretty big deal. Grab a friend to run the race with to make the experience all the more fun, and be proud of the moment when you cross the finish line!
Cooking your first healthy meal.
Whether you are loading up on your omega-3 fatty acids by preparing salmon or increasing your iron intake with a plate of broccoli, you’re making steps towards a nutritionally balanced meal that your body will thank you for. By adding more health foods to your diet, you’ll decrease your risk of chronic diseases, improve digestion, and maintain your overall health. They say abs are made in the kitchen, so you’re cooking up a great recipe for success by preparing your own meals. Now you can finally say goodbye to fast foods and get the health results you’ve been wishing for. Not to mention, the home-cooked meals will save you quite a pretty penny.