Expert Perspective: How to keep your 2021 fitness goals in check

Pro insights from Miriam Archibald: entrepreneur, fitness expert and health coach

2021 feels like it’s going to be a new year on so many levels. But, with the new year come the new year’s resolutions. According to this Business Insider article, there are three main reasons why your new year’s resolutions fail: 

  1. The goal isn’t specific enough, e.g. losing weight, vs losing 5 pounds by January 31, 2021. 
  2. Not framing the goal positively, e.g. don’t eat chocolate, makes you think about eating chocolate. 
  3. Not making the goal about you specifically, many people are influenced by the people around them, rather they should be about what you really want. 

We try hard in the beginning, life gets in the way, and you know how the rest goes. Nine times out of ten, we resurrect our goals to lose weight and save money. To get some motivation for 2021, I sat down in a Q&A with Miriam Archibald, a fitness entrepreneur and influencer to get some perspective on getting healthy in the new year. 

Prox: Tell us about yourself

>> Miriam Archibald: 

“I’m a fitness and health expert, a certified physical trainer (CPT), have a degree in exercise science and have been practising for almost 10-years. Like many women, I struggled with the perception of my body; I suffered through anorexia and bulimia. I’d only eat salads. I looked good, people would comment about how good I looked and unfortunately, that only fed the cycle. I went through this pain. 

“I struggled with the perception of my body. I suffered through anorexia and bulimia. People would comment about how good I looked and unfortunately, that only fed the cycle.”

Miriam Archibald

Going through this personally, I have a mission to help people feel better in their own skin, find self-love and find confidence in themselves. My primary goal with my clients is to help them create a sustainable, healthy lifestyle.”

Prox: Tell us about your customer, what common challenges?

>> Miriam Archibald: 

“Most of my clients are women of all shapes, sizes, and age groups from 18 to 60 plus. Most people struggle with creating a healthy mindset first. Most of the times, people don’t have the right tools, so I typically help with things like:

  • Developing a healthy eating plan and educating people on portion control. Most people actually don’t eat enough and will try extreme dieting or keto that aren’t sustainable. 
  • Goal setting, looking at both short-term and long term to help people stay on track.
  • Creating a fitness routine that is fun so they aren’t bored and can fit into busy schedules
  • Women, especially, focus on cardio but ignore weight training and core strengthening. People will forget or not realize the body is connected. I find that we create a lot of physical and mental imbalance, e.g. exercise can help stress become more manageable.”

Prox: What are some fitness tips to help keep motivated beyond our New Year’s resolutions?

>> Miriam Archibald: 

  • Don’t obsess over the scale, BMI is wrong 
  • Create specific short-term goals that help you reach your bigger goals  
  • Take photos of yourself to help keep track of your progress 
  • Don’t try to impress others
  • Work on stability and your core, not just cardio
  • Keep track of the food you eat 
  • Create a buddy system, work in a team, having a community is important and can create accountability

Prox: Where do you go for inspiration?

>> Miriam Archibald: 

“Fitness keeps me focused, and it becomes motivating in itself. It also helps me work through challenges. I think of the quote, “let your pain be your strength.”

“Let your pain be your strength.”

Miriam Archibald

I also admire Serena Williams. She’s a strong, successful black woman who is changing perceptions of what you can be and what you should look like.” 

Prox: Any predictions for 2021?

>> Miriam Archibald: 

“Coronavirus and quarantines have changed so many things in our lives. It was like a reset. Considering we’re now all spending a lot more time at home, being less active, we saw a direct impact on our health. This accelerated, what I think, a health-conscious movement of looking at health from a holistic view, being more aware of the importance of self-love, self-confidence and mental well-being.”

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