The holidays offer plenty of opportunities to gather with friends, family and co-workers, but the season can be challenging when it comes to diet and workout accountability. That’s why it’s the perfect time to ask others if they’d like to be part of a fitness group that keeps everyone on track.
Why is accountability important?
When we’re left to our own devices, it’s often hard to motivate ourselves to keep going. After sticking with a fitness routine for a while, you may be tempted to sleep in instead of heading to the gym or going for a walk or run. Before long, you may get into the habit of skipping your workout more and more often, to the point that you’ll find yourself only exercising sporadically – if at all.
If you have some type of accountability, however, you’ll be more likely to show up and stay motivated. Fitness groups, for example, help provide support for each member. You may be tempted to skip your workout or cut it short on your own, but belonging to a group can inspire you to keep pushing hard when others around you are doing the same thing.
Starting a fitness group
Chances are good that you have a circle of friends, family and/or co-workers who would be interested in joining a group to get fit. Choose people who will have a shared goal, such as losing weight or boosting their fitness, and make sure they’re committed to supporting each other and holding everyone accountable.
- Set weekly check-ins
Meet in person if you can, but if that’s not possible, arrange to connect using Skype, a Facebook group or a similar method. Checking in at least once a week will help keep the group motivated and on track.
- Have clear goals
Set short-term and long-term goals to maintain the group’s focus. You can even build in some rewards and penalties, such as prizes for keeping to a workout schedule for a month or “fines” of a few dollars per missed workout. Why not put fines into a pool for prizes, such as workout gear, a mani/pedi or a few meetings with a fitness trainer?
- Set an agenda for each check-in
Without a set agenda, it’s easy to spend the entire time catching up on everything BUT fitness-related matters. Include items on the agenda such as sharing weekly weigh-in numbers or measurements and having each member talk about how he or she worked toward the common goal. You can devote the last few minutes of each meeting to exchanging personal news, but talk about workout accountability first!
- Keep each other motivated
If someone hasn’t been in contact with the group, get in touch and find out why. Offer encouragement when needed, and be positive, supportive and honest with one another to increase each member’s chances of success.
Contact BMI of Texas for more information about how fitness groups can help improve your workout accountability.