With Christmas and 2017 in touching distance now, you might be toying with the idea of starting your own fitness regime from January. You want rid of the fat round your mid section and to slap on a little lean muscle. Cool and perfectly achievable for you. 

But what does it actually take? What separates those that want it to happen from those who make it happen?

1/ A TIME FRAME- This helps create sense of urgency. Time is always going to tick away so a goal date or several within a year will really help you keep focused, motivated and also give you gauges of progress.

2/ A PLAN- Trying to transform your body without some form of plan is like driving a car blind folded. There's a possibility you'll get where you need to go, but there's a far bigger possibility you won't and you'll crash and burn. Whether you invest in a specialist or follow a more generic magazine cutout plan, you need a plan!

3/ TRY YOUR BEST AND BE PREPARED FOR THE WORST- It's easy to feel unstoppable and give it your all on the good days but how you react to the bad days; the days you're ill, tired, stressed or feeling overwhelmed, these are the days that will make or break you. 

4/ A SUPPORTIVE NETWORK- This is so important. You can go a long way alone, but with a strong supportive network you'll go far further. Do your best to get your other half on board, maybe they'll want to make their own improvements along side you? Remember, you're a product of the five people you spend most time around so choose wisely.

5/ BE A PROBLEM SOLVER- You need to understand that although you might want to moan and whine from time to time, this does absolutely nothing for taking you closer to your goals. Don't waste valuable time complaining or avoiding issues, face them and solve them. 

6/ SEEK ADVICE WHERE APPROPRIATE- There are so many platforms in this day and age for you to seek any advice you need. BUT with that said, there's also a ton of places to pick up some pretty naff advice too. So source the right people with the right information to soak up knowledge from when needed.

7/ DON'T SWEAT THE SMALL STUFF- Similar to the problem solver point above; there is always going to be things that don't go according to plan but that's fine, life tends to work that way! Learn to prioritise; getting in your training sessions consistently is more important than if your apples are organic or not.

8/ A REAL MOTIVE- Probably the most crucial of all. If your motive isn't so strong that you'll often wake up thinking about it and go to bed to dream about it then i question whether your 'why' is strong enough. Having a deep rooted motive will push you on when you are within a whisker of giving up and set you up for massive success.