It’s really awesome to see new faces in the gym at the beginning of the year. I’m encouraged by folks want to actively take part in changing who they “were” and begin a new phase in their fitness lives! And, that New Year’s resolution is a great way to start. Just like training your mind, training your body is just as important. You can add years to your life just by doing something as simple as taking a walk everyday. However, if you add weight training and proper nutrition to the mix, that number can dramatically increase!
OK, so here’s the problem…
A little over 90% people who make those New Year’s resolutions to lose weight, eat better and get fit, (or all three) will drop out of their regimen by Valentine’s Day. Over 90%! I see it in the gym every year. During that first week, they come to the gym and run, lift weights and take classes for hours a day. Then, you don’t see them for a week because they’re so sore, they can barely move.
The key is MODERATION!!! You didn’t get out of shape and/or gain weight overnight and you’re certainly not going to get fit overnight either. It takes dedication, discipline and commitment. You need to take your time, ease into a training routine and try to get educated in all 3 of the major facets of fitness…weight training, cardio work and proper nutrition.
Here are some recommendations to help you along the way…
- Make Exercise of Part of Your Daily Routine:
Just like bathing, putting on your clothes or brushing your teeth everyday, so should be your training commitment. A great quote is: “I don’t find the time to exercise, I make the time to exercise”. Start by just setting aside 30 minutes to an hour each day. Too busy you say? I doubt it. TURN OFF THE TV. Calculate how many hours of TV you watch every week…go ahead, try it. I bet you’ll be able to squeeze some time in between Wheel of Fortune and The Bachelor.
- Set Realistic Goals:
As I said earlier, take your time. Start with just 3 days a week. 20-30 minutes of cardio work and the same with weight training. You’ll feel so much better and be invigorated to continue!
- Hire a Personal Trainer:
If you’re unsure what to do and/or where to start, this can be key to your fitness lifestyle. They hold you accountable and can greatly help you minimize mistakes and maximize your training time. If it’s not in your budget, then find a training buddy who is knowledgeable being around the gym. Both can be invaluable.
- Keep Your Eye on the Prize:
Your Health. Let me repeat that…Your Health! I know, it’s much easier to sit on the couch and put your feet up. Research has shown that you can prevent numerous diseases by exercising, including; cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, obesity, depression, dementia and high blood pressure. Exercise reduces body fat, tones your muscles, helps you look great and boosts your self-esteem. Isn’t this worth the time it takes to do a little exercise? We can’t get this from sitting on the couch eating potato chips.
- Make it Convenient:
Exercise should be an enjoyable part of your day, a time you look forward to and embrace. But keeping this attitude will be difficult if you have to travel a long way to the gym before you even start your workout. You’ll also be much less likely to stay committed if exercising is a hassle. To make exercise as convenient as possible, pick a gym that is very close to your home or place of work. If you’re a morning exerciser, pack your gym bag the night before so you can grab it and go in the morning. If you exercise after work, bring your bag with you to the office so you can stop at the gym on your way home. Remember, also that weekends are not about “just relaxing”. After having that Saturday (or, Sunday) morning cup of coffee, get off the couch and go to the gym. You’ll be glad you did!
6. Learn About Proper Nutrition:
If you have the resources, see a nutritionist, your trainer or someone who you know personally that has already done the nutritional work in their lives and pick their brains. Plus, there is a ton of information on the internet about proper nutrition. This is probably THE most important part of your training lifestyle. You won’t regret it! Please don’t go to the gym and do your weight training and cardio work, then stop at Burger King on the way home. It doesn’t work that way…I can personally guarantee that you’ll feel a whole lot better about yourself if you begin a proper nutrition regimen. Remember, nothing tastes as good as fit feels…!
- Track Your Progress:
Keep track of small successes. Short-term goals are much easier to make and those little accomplishments will help keep you motivated! If you need to lose weight, don’t obsess over the total amount…your goal should be focusing on the first five pounds…then, the next five. After awhile, you’ll have reached your goal!
- Don’t Beat Yourself Up:
If you “fall off the exercise/nutritional wagon” for a day or so, don’t throw in the towel. Just get back at it! One day at a time…!
You can do this…I know you can. It is thought that it takes about 21 days for a new activity to become a habit and about six-months for it to become a part of your life and your personality. Remember, this won’t happen overnight, just be persistent and patient!
If you’re reading this and I can assist you in any way, please reach out to me at anytime. I’m always here to help…!