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How to Maintain a Healthy Fitness Resolution in 2010

With the coming of a New Year comes new resolutions and set goals we plan to achieve to improve our quality of life. Whether that be to quit a bad habit, maintain a healthier diet or participate in a new activity, New Year resolutions are a way we can enhance our personal well-being.

One of the most common New Year resolutions is to improve  our physical fitness at the gym. In fact, the month of January is the busiest for health clubs in enrollments and attendance. Although many people have great intentions to enroll in a gym, did you know that on average between 20%-30% of all new attendees drop out after 90-days?

RS804_istock_000003240227smallHow can you maintain your fitness resolution?

  • Reflect on why you made your resolution. Do you have health-related reasons? Do Do you want to look “better” for an upcoming event such as a reunion or wedding? Or do you want to simply incorporate a healthier lifestyle? When you find yourself distracted away from your resolution, keep the reasons why you made it in the forefront of your thoughts.
  • Celebrate your successes. Share your improvements with others – you will find motivating partners a valuable asset in your journey, and you can learn helpful tips and insightful stories along the way.
  • Don’t hesitate. If you want to incorporate a healthier lifestyle in the New Year, then do it. Hesitating in where to begin will only detract you for your resolution further.
  • Keep a schedule. Plan how many days or at what times you will work out. Blocking time in calendars helps us to mentally prepare for what lies ahead. Tracking your progress in a journal can also help in noting your successes and note areas for improvement.
  • Stay motivated. Sure, it’s easy for these words to be printed vs. being put into action, however we are continuously challenged to keep that resolution going. Every day from the smallest of excuses (e.g. “it’s too cold outside” or “I’m too tired”) to feeling intimidated to workout in a room full of seemingly “beautiful” people, we can get further and further distracted from accomplishing our fitness goals. Understand that fitness is a lifestyle change. It will take time to gradually feel better, see results and recognize the true value you have undertaken for well-being.

Be wary road-blocks to your resolution

If you made it past the 90-day mark, eat a healthy diet at work and in the home, and realize you are still struggling with your health or may be disappointed by the results, consider an unforeseen culprit found at the gym – not in your refrigerator. The gym “snack bar” serving multiple “healthy” alternative snacks, beverages and opportunities to relax after a good workout, may be adding additional calories to your diet.

Burning between 300-400 calories (on average) by doing cardio exercise may not burn enough calories to warrant the amount of calories consumed in a sports drink, smoothie or energy bar typically available for purchase at the gym. If you consume a pre-workout energy bar and drink a post-workout smoothie, you may have just consumed over 600 calories!

Do drink water plenty of water – stay away from beverages at the gym containing sugar. If you are hungry, consider bringing fruits and yogurt which tend to be low in calories and are high in water content – an instant solution to feeling full.

Plan on a healthy 2010? Share your fitness resolution goals with us!

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