January 6, 2009

Resolution observations

It is a new year and it is the time when people make resolutions. What I've found is most people make resolutions around the themes of money and finances or health and fitness. It is harder to observe people's resolutions about money and finances. But I go to the gym regularly and every January I always see a surge of people joining the gym and making their first steps toward their health and fitness resolutions. Attendance always seems to taper down by February.

Although I am glad that people are making decision to be more fit and healthy, it is a little annoying to have to wrestle with parking and crowded gyms during the month of January. I haven't changed my workout schedule (even when I found out I was pregnant I still continued to workout on the same schedule, although modified intensity), yet the presence at the gym has changed. Now I have to alter my schedule slightly to get there a little earlier for the classes I take or to get a machine.

I do truly hope that people will make true changes and make health and fitness a priority. If people can keep it up for a month and make it part of their regular schedule it has a good chance of becoming a habit and they will be able to realize the benefits. It is hard at first to get started so good for the newbies at the gym for making an effort. Keep it up!!

It is important to remember that health and fitness is a life long commitment, going to the gym for a week out of the year is not going to cut it. (And you don't need to belong to a gym to exercise.) It is not easy but it is the best thing that you can do for yourself.

Some tips to start a fitness routine:
  • Start of with one, measurable goal. It should be something that you can track and that can be easy to meet. Once you meet that goal, make another goal, and continue to build upon each goal. You will feel more successful if you are able to track your goal and meet them using baby steps. And with baby steps you are more likely to stick with a fitness routine.
  • Start slowly. Gradually challenge and build up your stamina and strength over time. If you've never ran before, don't think you can just start running a marathon right away. You may need to start off by walking 10-15 minutes at first and then increase the time and combine walking and running before you can run the distance.
  • Schedule your workouts. Schedule your time for working out like you would schedule a meeting or appointment. Put it in your calendar and treat it like any other appointment or meeting.
  • Drink plenty of water. Be sure to hydrate yourself.
  • Don't forget to strength train. Many people just do cardio workouts and don't realize how important strength training is to losing weight and being fit. Strength training builds muscle which helps to burn calories. It is a balance of cardio and strength training that will help you to get fit and get to your goals.
Good luck and be well!

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