Six weeks in and struggling with New Year’s resolutions? Here’s how to get back on track

It’s been a little over six weeks since many set a New Year’s resolution to exercise more and eat better — and many probably bit off a little more than they could chew.

An online-based trainer has some advice to get your fitness and health goals back on track and make your progress more manageable.

“You don’t have to be extreme, you just have to be consistent,” Cap Fitness Academy Coach TJ Moats told WTOP.

Cap Fitness Academy is an online-based personal training and nutrition coaching platform that specializes in New Year’s resolutions and starting healthy habits.

Moats stresses to clients that motivation often fades after those first few weeks of your health journey.

“When you start, you say, ‘I’m gonna clean up my diet, I’m not going to drink. And then I’m going to try to maybe run a lot, lift weights — getting into stuff that’s maybe way too hard,” said. “And it’s putting so many things onto them at once, rather than trying to build habits.”

He said rather than go extreme with that motivation, you should try to build more manageable habits.

“Build the habits and then let them slowly build on top of themselves, then you no longer need motivation,” Moats said.

One way to look at habits is to not focus too much on the specific goal of, say losing 10 pounds, and “instead focus on what do I need to do today?” he said.

The most difficult component, he said, revolves around nutrition. Moats said give yourself the best chance to succeed with your diet by improving your environment.

“Fill your refrigerator with the things that you want to eat,” said Moats. “It’s almost like fake-it-till-you make it. Go grocery shop after you’ve eaten so you’re not hungry. And get all the things that you think that you feel you should be eating — and put those in your pantry.”

If you find you never touch the healthy stuff you’ve bought, maybe it’s time to get a nutrition coach.

As for physical activity, you don’t have to do 400-pound dead lifts or run a marathon when you are starting out. Moats suggested taking small steps right at home and in your backyard.

The first thing to accomplish is getting at least 7,000 steps per day, he said. If you work a sedentary job it is very likely that you will be required to step away and get short walks throughout the day to meet the goal.

After accomplishing steps, you may want to focus on strength training; but don’t just start off with the vanity bicep curls.

“We rely so heavily on our legs to carry us around each and every single day,” said Moats “You got to start putting some pressure on those legs.”

He suggests doing body weight squats until your legs start to burn and repeats that rep count for three times and then do the same thing with a basic body weight lunge.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by TJ Moats (@tjmoats)

As for the upper body, a push and pull exercise is important. If you can’t quite get a standard pushup, start with your hands on an elevated surface.

“I suggest start on a wall, work your way to the countertop, to a desk, to the back of the couch,” said Moats.

As for the pulling exercise, you may have to get creative by hanging bags of books on a broom stick and doing bent-over low rows.

“Resistance bands are also a great tool because you can change the amount of intensity by tying them off. Making them shorter makes it harder and they are very low cost,” Moats said.

Whatever you ultimately do, continue doing it and stay consistent, Moats said, “because those small habits over time can give tremendous results as long as you’re consistent.”

Luke Lukert

Since joining WTOP Luke Lukert has held just about every job in the newsroom from producer to web writer and now he works as a full-time reporter. He is an avid fan of UGA football. Go Dawgs!

Like WTOP on Facebook and follow WTOP on Twitter and Instagram to engage in conversation about this article and others.

Get breaking news and daily headlines delivered to your email inbox by signing up here.

© 2023 WTOP. All Rights Reserved. This website is not intended for users located within the European Economic Area.

More from WTOP

Log in to your WTOP account for notifications and alerts customized for you.

Sign up