It’s that time of year again- the hectic holiday season is behind us, a new year is here, and the resolutions have been made! For many of us, setting an intention to be healthier and workout more often are highest on our 2017 to-do list; you have a plan, now how do you follow through? If making exercise a regular habit ranks highest on this year’s list of resolutions, here are my best 10 tips for how to put action behind your words and put strategies in place to make 2017 the year that you make fitness a part of your life for good!
1. Remember the "Why"
Keep in mind that exercise is not a punishment for your body, it is a celebration of your strength and capabilities!
2. Consistency is Key
You do not have to have the “perfect” workout every day- fitness, just like anything else, is all about momentum and consistency. Doing a little something every day will lead to big results over time.
3. Find Your Fit
In order to remain consistent, fitness must be something you enjoy (more or less…). Ok so every workout won’t feel great all the time, but if you find a class or type of exercise you prefer more than others you are more likely to want to head to the gym, or yoga studio, or spin class, to get your workout in for the day.
4. Everybody is Different, and Every Body is Different
There is no “right” workout for everyone- the cardio kickboxing class that your co-worker swears by may not be your thing, and may not get you the same results. Every body responds differently to various modes of exercise, so do not get discouraged if you don’t see results after trying one form of training.
5. Switch It Up
Working out can, at times, feel monotonous and boring. Mix up your fitness routine with a variety of classes and training methods to keep the workouts fun. This will give you more to look forward to in your training sessions.
6. Try New Things
Because every body is unique (see #4), your body may not respond in exactly the same way to, say, that spin class that got your BFF in great shape. Explore every variety of fitness that appeals to you and keep mixing it up. Variety is the spice of life and it may be the key to your fitness success.
7. Different Goals, Different Standards
Now, this may be a tough one for some: if making fitness a part of your life is truly a priority, you are going to have to shift your standards. Let me explain: if you have a 7am spin class, you have different goals than, say, your co-workers who are headed out for a late night happy hour sesh. Do not be afraid to be different, and do not be afraid to say “no” to social activities which no longer serve you and your goals.
8. Mindset Matters
In order to be sustainable, fitness cannot be that thing you do to get ready for your annual girl’s trip to Cancun. In order to be healthier, happier, and more fit for the long run you must shift your mindset regarding fitness. View fitness as an everyday habit, not as a quick fix. See 365 ways to put this idea into action.
9. Think Long-term
As I mentioned in #8 there is no magic pill for getting fit- do not get discouraged if you don’t see results in the first week (because you won’t). Instead, think about your long-term fitness goals: do you want to live a longer and more active life? Do you want to be able to go on that hiking trip with your new crush without getting winded after the first mile? Do you want more energy to be able to play with your children longer? Think about what fitness truly means for you. Hint: it’s not just about looking good naked (although that is a nice side-effect!).
A consistent fitness regimen does not happen by accident. The old adage “if you fail to plan, then you plan to fail” rings true for a successful fitness plan. If you are planning on hitting the gym first thing in the morning, set out your workout outfit, socks and shoes directly at the foot of your bed so that it’s all ready for you when your alarm goes off. Catching an after-work gym sesh? Pack your gym bag the night before, so you can just grab-and-go on your way to work in the morning.