It's that time of year again and as you read this you may well have half a mind on your New Year Resolutions for 2015. Most of us use this as an opportunity to right our wrongs from the previous year, to learn from our mistakes or to attempt to achieve something that we have been meaning to do for ages.
The sentiment is a positive one, which should be applauded. But why do we need to wait for the 1st January to turn over a new leaf? Why should our diary dictate when we will do something that is supposedly 'important' to us?
Why do our resolutions always start at the beginning of a new year? Why do gym memberships increase at the start of a new month? Why do diets always start on Mondays? In reality, most resolutions get broken within a few weeks anyway, most gym memberships are left to gather dust within a number of days and I have known many many diets that have been broken literally within minutes...so why do we wait for a date to come around when there is a good chance we won't keep to our word anyway?
Here is the reason. We have really good intentions, but we can be very weak...and we find it far too easy to find excuses.
It is so easy to find an excuse NOT to do something - it's too hot, it's too cold, I don't like training inside, I don't like training outside, I don't have time, I don't have money, I don't have a car etc etc etc - I have heard them all before and if I am honest I have used a lot of them myself too, so I know how easy it is to have a continuous cycle of good intentions followed by crappy excuses.
The bad news is - nothing will EVER change. Ten years can go by in the blink of an eye and we won't have achieved anything we said we would. Remember, if you do what you have always done, then you will have what you have always had.
The good news is - things can be changed right NOW. If you know that you need to do some training, or you know you need to stretch more, or there is something you should/shouldn't eat...then sort it out. Now. The minute you wait until a point in your diary comes around then you have completely devalued the importance of that activity - hence the reason most resolutions are broken within a short time frame.
As I write this I am in a hotel room in the middle of Hampshire, 12 hours away from the start of my first ever Obstacle Course Race. It's the end of November. It's cold. It's raining. There is another race in April. But i don't care - I am doing this race NOW because it means a lot for me to challenge myself and push myself out of my comfort zone.
There are 1001 excuses I could use not to take part but I am using every excuse possible to justify doing it right now. As soon as I finish writing this article I am going to make a dentist appointment, do some Christmas shopping, use my foam roller and plan my sessions for next week.
I am on a roll, getting things done...and it's going to stay that way, every single day.
Find an excuse to do everything that is important to you right now, no matter how easy it may be to wait until tomorrow.