Fitness, nutrition and weight loss resolutions are the #1 kind set in the USA. Sadly, 92% of Americans will fail to keep their resolutions in 2017. Fortunately for you, you’re reading this article so you can be part of the 8% in 2017:

Start with one

Setting yourself up for success is pretty much the opposite of reality TV. On reality TV you move to a ranch and change every aspect of how you eat, move, sleep, etc. and sacrifice the rest of your life to lose the most weight. This makes for great TV, but fails 99% of the contestants and doesn’t even work for a short period of time if you can’t abandon your family.

In real life single-tasking produces the best results. When people have one habit to change they have an 85% success rate, at two habits it drops to 35%, and at 3 habits the success rate drops to less than 10%. It feels like you’ll get better results by tackling everything at once, however the opposite is true – you’ll be busier, more stressed, yet have less to show for it.

Where should moms start?

I’ve been coaching mostly mothers for almost 20 years and there are two skills that seem to make the biggest difference in success: (a) getting 3 workouts per week, and (b) eating 3-4 times a day without snacking. Why these two?

On the mental/emotional-side getting 3 strength training workouts per week (a) gives mothers a reason and a routine of carving out regular time for self-care[1], (b) literally boost self-discipline and self-control, and (c) provides a vastly superior out-less for stress vs. food. On the physical side it (a) is the only thing you can do that actually increases your metabolism[2], (b) won’t make you ravenously hungry like long cardio sessions will, and (c) literally makes the tasks you do everyday easier/less exhausting.

Eating 3-4 times a day is a refreshingly simple and incredibly effective way to establish calorie control. When humans have (a) unlimited access to excessively tempting food and (b) graze all day long they almost always overeat.

But, what about eating 6 small meals per day? I actually wrote and entire article on that myth over here. And the short version is three-fold (1) your muscles don’t atrophy without a steady supply of protein – research shows that it takes a full 60 hours with no food before your body burns it’s muscle. (2) The more often you eat the hungrier you will be. (3) Eating 6 meals a day was started as a weight-gaining strategy for bodybuilders when anabolic steroids became available.

[1] It’s a cliché and it sounds like hyperbole, but this will change your life. No, it won’t make you taller or solve all the problems in your life. (Nothing will do that.)

[2] We don’t have space to get into detail on this, but it is worth repeating that strength training is the only thing you can do elevate your metabolism. There is no supplement, no “super”foods (super foods don’t exist), no meal pattern, no nothing that can protect and accelerate your metabolism. Short of correcting a thyroid problem, strength training is it.

About Guest Blogger, Josef Bradenburg and True 180 Personal Training for Women

Josef Brandenburg is the co-owner of True 180 – a women’s only personal training studio in Ballantyne; and a best-selling author. True 180 Personal Training for women is a safe space where women who don’t necessarily like gyms can get into the best shape of their lives in a safe and sustainable way. Find out more about them here, and/or find out more about their January Transformation Program.