By Alexandra Bonetti, Bari Studio
The Bari Studio opened in Tribeca the summer of 2011, which means that this will be the fourth January we share with our Bari tribe. In that time, we’ve learned a lot about what health means to people during this unique month of resolutions and clean slates. We haven’t met anyone who doesn’t list health among their resolutions — and it makes sense, as our health is the backbone to all good things in life. In fact, at Bari we believe happiness starts with health.
When it comes to setting and executing New Year’s resolutions, we’ve seen many people succeed, but we’ve also watched many people fail - and we started wondering what made all the difference. With three years of resolutions under our belt at Bari (and 3 weeks into January!), I think it’s time we share the top 3 mistakes we’ve seen our Tribers make — as well as solutions — so that we are all primed to stick to the resolutions we made, and keep 2015 a time of goal-achieving and unthinkable success.
Mistake #1: Overachieving.
It’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of a new year. We write out our lists, and as we’re writing, more things come to mind, and we write those down, too.
- Get in the best shape of my life
- Completely change the way I eat
- Bring my lunch to work every day
- Learn a language
- Pick up an instrument
- Read one book every month
- Start flossing
- Train for a marathon
- Be a better wife/daughter/student/sister…
The list goes on. None of those things are impossible on their own; actually, all of those goals are achievable in a year’s time. However, going for all of them at the same time is overwhelming, hard to track, and way too much to add to your plate at once.
The solution: Divide and conquer.
- Make your list. Go ahead and write absolutely everything down.
- Give your goals priorities. Which are the most important or the ones you want to accomplish the soonest?
- Focus on your top six. These are the ones you’re going to accomplish in 2015.
- Give yourself two months to work on each goal separately. If you’re starting with “get in the best shape of my life,” January and February will be your bricklaying months. These are the months where you’ll include this goal in your everyday life, so you can turn it into a habit for the rest of the year (and beyond!).
- Check in with yourself weekly. If you have two months to really tackle each goal, you need to work on it full-force. This means asking yourself each week: How did I do? What can I learn from this past week? What can I do better next week? How can I propel this goal forward and stay excited, motivated, and accountable?
Mistake #2: Giving up too quickly.
True change isn’t convenient to achieve because it takes a while. Sometimes that means weeks, sometimes months, and sometimes, as scary as it sounds, years. I see people come into Bari for quick fixes all the time, but this ‘quick fix’ fever runs most rampant in January, because people are so excited. (And, to no surprise, that excitement wears away with time.)
The solution: Become your biggest fan.
Your mind will always play games with you. You’ll come up with a thousand and one excuses every day to sleep in, to start tomorrow, to take a break. You’ll doubt your potential. STOP IT, RIGHT THIS SECOND. If you’re not your biggest fan, your biggest supporter, your biggest champion, you’ll never exceed what you think is possible. Love yourself, encourage yourself. Count every week you do things right as a success, even if that success isn’t immediately visible to you. Every time a negative thought enters your mind, replace it with a positive thought. Celebrate yourself.
Mistake #3: Not having a plan.
A lot of the time, not having a plan isn’t a big deal. You don’t know what you’re doing this weekend? Great, be spontaneous. You don’t know what movie you’re watching until you get to the movie theatre? Fun. But when it comes to embarking on a health resolution, you need a plan. You need to be able to track what you’re doing so you maintain your conviction. I see people working out for fun all the time, and I LOVE those people. However, if you’re sick of putting in work with no results, if you’ve worked out aimlessly without feeling like you’re moving towards your goal, or if you’re ready to make some serious changes to your body and mind, you need a plan.
The solution: Stop guessing.
1. Start with measurements. It’s not easy to come up with a plan if you don’t know exactly where your shortcomings are. We see people all the time that come in and say, “I want to lose weight.” Then we do their BodyMetrix measurements, and it turns out they don’t have that much extra fat to lose, but they’re carrying muscle in areas they don’t want it. Try a BariRx consult, which includes a measurement session using our BodyMetrix system and a personalized fitness prescription.
2. Track your workouts. Use a heart rate monitor to get real insight into how hard you’re working. Go to bed early one night, and monitor if that affects your energy output in your workout the next day. Unless you’re able to understand what’s working and what’s not working, you can’t come up with a solid plan for success.
3. Keep track of what you’re putting in your body. This will benefit you in two major ways: you’ll be able to identify foods that aren’t great for you, and you’ll feel more accountable to eat well when you’re keeping track of what you’re eating. Grab a notebook, buy a Bari Food Journal, or start a Google doc you can open wherever you are.
Happy 2015! How are your resolutions going so far? This will be your best year yet – we are behind you!
In our discovery of what we don’t want, we often stumble upon what we do. Such was the case for Alexandra Bonetti Pérez, a former financial and management consultant, Wharton grad, and exercise fanatic, who sampled every workout possible during her years traveling as a consultant. Limited by exercise myths and methods that did nothing to transform her body, Alexandra left consulting and committed herself to developing a workout that delivered the results she craved. She knew fitness could be - and should be - a lifestyle brand; this vision for an inclusive space for nutrition, culture, art and a true community is the backbone of Bari.