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Why You Should Celebrate Your Fitness Milestones – And 3 Ways to Do It
Read on to explore the benefits of celebrating fitness milestones and fitness goals, and improve your fitness level and healthy habits.
Celebrating small wins keeps you motivated to reach future goals.
Do you forget to celebrate achieving your fitness goals? You work so hard to reach a milestone. But the minute you do, you might start thinking about the next goal that’s even bigger.
You may think this is just part of being ambitious and goal-minded – but not celebrating your accomplishments makes it less likely you'll reach your next goal. This applies to all aspects of life: work, relationships, hobbies, and fitness.
Recognizing your success and internalizing a sense of accomplishment affects your brain physiology. You train your brain to crave a feeling of satisfaction and pride. Then you'll be more likely to seek that feeling again by reaching your next goal.
Maybe you're humble and celebrating your success makes you uncomfortable. That's okay. This doesn't have to be a big public announcement! In fact, internalizing success on a personal level can be even more impactful and make you feel more confident in your abilities.
Read on to explore the benefits of celebrating milestones, and how to turn these small celebrations into strategies to improve your fitness level and healthy habits.
The Psychology of Celebrating Small Wins
You've been working towards a fitness goal for the past few months. Every morning at 6 AM you debate snoozing your alarm – but you get out of bed anyway. You're determined to prioritize your workouts even with your busy schedule.
You make progress day after day. You're feeling stronger, more agile, and more capable of getting to the next level. And one day, after months of work, you reach your goal!
- You’ve moved up from using 3- to 5-pound weights in Barre class.
- You can balance in half-moon pose without falling over in Flow Yoga.
- You made it through an entire HIIT sequence without taking a break.
But instead of basking in the feeling of accomplishment, you quickly forget it. The next day, you start class and think about how far you have until you hit your next goal. Soon you might start to lose motivation, because every time you reach a milestone it feels like someone just pushed the goal post further down the field.
But, taking time to reward yourself for reaching a milestone actually makes you more motivated to keep going.
When you recognize an accomplishment it activates the reward center of your brain, releasing dopamine. Dopamine is that feel-good chemical that makes you feel energized and satisfied. And that feeling is addictive.
Dopamine plays an active role in forming addictions to drugs, alcohol, gambling - you name it. The trick is to understand how dopamine works so you can use it to your advantage.
Once you start recognizing your accomplishments you'll be more motivated to feel that way again. Recording progress even in a small way is proven to boost self-confidence. But it also sets you up to continue reaching your goals in the future.1 People who take time to reflect on celebrate their successes are generally more optimistic, take better care of themselves and tend to be less stressed.
How to Celebrate Your Milestones in Fitness, Work, and Life
Here are three ways to cultivate practices to internalize your successes and accomplishments in fitness. But these can also apply to milestones in any aspect – from work to your personal life.
- Internalization. At the end of a class, take a moment to close your eyes and think about what you have accomplished – and deeply feel the weight of your success. Combining thoughts with feelings can influence your beliefs about yourself. This exercise will help you start anchoring your ability to succeed.
- Tell Someone. Sometimes our friends and family are our biggest supporters. Even more than ourselves. Your friends won't let you get away with not celebrating your milestones! Another tip is to share your goals with a friend before you set out on achieving them. It helps to have someone to hold you accountable and care about where you are on your fitness journey. That’s exactly why the bande community is so impactful. Share a goal with a bande instructor after class. They will help coach you along the way and help celebrate your accomplishments as you achieve them.
- Give Shout Outs to Others. Celebrating the accomplishments of others helps you feel more positive and motivated too. Being in the habit of giving compliments helps us notice and appreciate what’s good and what we like in those around us. Being encouraging helps us create an optimistic, happier outlook. And who knows, you might build your own cheering squad when those people feel compelled to reciprocate.
If you don't celebrate your achievements then you’re more likely to lose motivation for your next goal, and you could even start losing the progress you’ve made. You can risk overworking yourself, pushing yourself too hard, and burning out.
Set and Achieve Fitness Goals With bande
At bande we recognize how important it is to celebrate your personal wins. Get shout-outs in class or on your bande activity feed. Plus with bande’s cheer and comments features, it’s easy to celebrate others working toward fitness goals and get encouragement, too.
If you're looking to grow, stretch, and achieve new goals in fitness, sign up for a free trial with bande today. Our network is truly one of the most supportive communities out there.