KUSA - This is the time of year when most of us resolve to be better versions of ourselves - and many of us decide this is the year we will get in better shape.
No matter if you are an experienced gym-goer or a fitness newbie, resolutions can be hard to keep. Here are 5 tips to keep you going:
1) Just get started - Lace up those sneakers and step out the front door. Lay out your yoga mat on the bedroom floor. Getting started is usually the hardest part. Do not worry about how far you will go or long you will work out. Instead, the moment you feel yourself dreading your workout or losing motivation, stop agonizing and just start. The rest will take care of itself.
2) Pace yourself - Start slow - lay the foundation for success. There is a sweet spot where exercising invigorates you, energizes you and makes you smile. If you push past that threshold into extreme muscle soreness and utter exhaustion too soon, you will be less likely to return tomorrow, let alone next week or next month. As you get stronger and fitter, your threshold will increase, and you will be able to do more. But when you start, start slow, do things you enjoy, and remind your body that moving is fun.
3) Join a group - Studies show, time and again, that becoming part of a group increases accountability and dedication to any program. This could mean attending a regular group exercise class, a Pilates boot camp, or join a yoga studio. But even if you prefer to workout solo, there are ways to reap the benefits of community. You could join an online fitness community and connect with a trainer online on sites such as: FitOrbit, The Daily Burn, FitnessGlo and YogaGlo, and MyBod Wellness. Or, create your own group challenge - my husband and his brothers begin a Burpee challenge every January.
4) Think outside the gym - Get creative. Find ways to get your workout in when you can't make it to the gym. Take the stairs, do squats while you fold laundry, do box jumps on the front porch, hold plank on the commercial breaks. Also, with small investments in equipment you can create a great at-home workout. Some of my favorites include: a stopwatch or timer app on your phone, a jump rope, a TRX suspension trainer, elastic bands, a rebounder, stability ball or BOSU.
5) Focus on resolve instead of the resolution - Even the best made plans will fail sometimes. Life happens, and whether it's because of illness or vacation or just lack of motivation, you will most likely fall off the workout wagon once in awhile. RESOLUTIONS are lofty goals, often hard to keep and often broken ("I'm going to workout seven times a week!" or "I'm going to lose 30 pounds by summer!"). RESOLVE is an attitude, a sense of determination and dedication, to soldier on towards a better you, regardless of the setbacks along the way. One day of indulgence will not make or break your goal. But beating yourself up over one misstep could set you back permanently. Focus on attacking your goals with RESOLVE and you will set yourself up for long term success.
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