Did you know that 70 per cent of people who start an exercise program drop out within the first two to three months?

If you started an exercise program in the New Year, this means chances are you have already given up.

It’s not your fault, it is your process.

You see, most people who want to start exercising just start exercising. Sounds simple, right?

Look at the people around you who are building or have built a house. They start out with an architectural plan first to know exactly how they want the house to look, how they want it laid out.

Or what if you wanted to start a business? The banks would require a business plan first, right? They’d want to ensure that you’ve really thought it through carefully and you’ve got a good plan to enhance success.

Heck, you have probably taken longer to plan this summer’s garden than your own lifestyle program.

Well, these same guidelines apply to exercise. You’ve got to have a plan for success. This is why the first few months of your fitness experience are so important. This is when most people drop out. So try to find a friend, trainer or motivator who will focus on getting you past this stage to the point where you’re experiencing great results.

And good results will help to motivate you to keep going.

The problem is most people stop exercising before they even had the chance to see the changes to their body. It takes time to see actual results. And as I have said before, it takes consistent time and training.

Today, I am going to introduce you to the “Four Laws of Success”. You must be ready to accept these laws without exception if you plan to experience success with your fitness and lifestyle goals.

First Law – THE LAW OF POSSESSION.

You need to understand that if you are going to achieve results, it is going to be up to you. The phrases “If it’s going to be, it’s up to me” or “If I think I can or think I can’t, I’m right,” ring very true.

You have to take ultimate responsibility for success or failure. Sometimes clients believe their trainer is going to be the one who makes it happen for them. While we can educate and guide, our clients must be willing to make and stick to the changes.

You cannot completely rely on someone else (like a personal trainer or workout partner) to make it happen for you and likewise, you cannot blame the kids or your partner for any failures.

Second Law – THE LAW OF EFFORT.

Anything worth achieving is worth working for. Exercise and healthy eating take discipline, will power, character, persistence and a commitment to delayed gratification.

Third Law – THE LAW OF CONSISTENCY.

Your life is not a short-term goal. A month-long effort is not going to get you where you want. In order to achieve any goal, you must stick to your game plan for the long-term.

Getting off track for a week is no big deal if you are consistent in your efforts, but if you are regularly tempted away from your program, you will not succeed.

Consistency.

Remember that if you want to be 10 pounds thinner 10 years from now, then it is what you do over the next 10 years!

If you want to have lower blood pressure, be able to chase your kids and grandkids around, and hike after retirement, that is not going to all take place in a month.

Life is a journey, not a destination.

Your program has got to be realistic if you’re going to stick to it. There are no short-term, quick-fix solutions.

Researchers have found only one characteristic common to those who succeed with exercise. All such people move toward their goal one step at a time. They are committed to constant, never-ending improvement. In practical terms, it means that regardless of anything else going on in your life and throughout your life there are no excuses.

You keep exercising, you keep being conscious of what you’re eating and you take it one day at a time.

Fourth Law – THE LAW OF SELF-EFFICACY.

If you are stepping into a program already questioning whether or not you can actually change, then you have already lost.

You must believe you can do it!

Think of self-esteem as a bank. Each time you keep a promise to yourself, the store of self-esteem gets bigger, making it easier to keep the next promise to yourself.

It’s all about “Results Momentum” – achieving one result gives you the confidence to achieve the next goal. If you had a friend who kept breaking promises, you would have a hard time trusting that person and the same goes for you. Each time you break a promise to yourself your self-esteem goes down, making it easier to break the next promise.

Surround yourself with others who are joining you in the process or have accomplished a long-term lifestyle change. After all, if they can do it, so can you.

You are no different or no less of a person than myself or Bill or Mary or Jennifer. If we can do it, so can YOU.

This column is provided by Peak Fitness. Mrs. Lee Randell is an ACE certified personal trainer. Contact information and past articles are available at www.peakfitnessyukon.com. Anyone who wants to begin an exercise program should consult their physician first.

This column is provided by Mrs. Lee Randell, independent fitness consultant, who is an ACE certified advanced health and fitness specialist and personal trainer. You can reach her at www.mrsleerandell.com.