One of my Precision Nutrition lessons this week brought out the important difference between being focused on behaviors versus outcomes. I can't control how many reps that I'll be able to complete with 185 lbs on the bench press this week (outcome); but I can control what time that I go to bed each night (behavior), what I eat each day leading up to my training (behavior), and whether I include upper body pressing movements in my week's training (behavior). Additionally, I know that if I maintain the proper behaviors week after week, I'm much more likely to have a favorable bench press outcome, than if I don't!
Losing 15 pounds, bench pressing 200 lbs, completing a half-marathon, and doing an 11:00 Quad Burn Challenge are all outcomes. They may be great goals to strive for but you'll never achieve them if you don't focus on the behaviors necessary to reach them. It can be difficult to begin a new behavior — slip-ups are almost guaranteed— but once you determine a behavior that you positively need or wish to change, strive for it with everything you've got!
A good behavior for December might be to exercise at least 4 times each week. If you wish to gain no weight during the month of December, and qualify for the "I Don't Want to Look Like Santa" Challenge drawing (outcome), exercising four times each week is probably going to be a necessary behavior. Don't forget to schedule your workouts in your day planner (behavior), and to pack a nutritious lunch each day (behavior), and to put your gym bag in the car (behavior)! You get the idea. When you set reasonable behaviors, and doggedly strive to complete them, successful outcomes are almost guaranteed!