If you're like most people you embrace the new year as a time to set new goals and start fresh. And whether those goals are health and wellness related or not the real trick is getting those resolutions to stick long after the motivation is gone.
Here are a few tips to help you achieve those health goals in 2018.
Find your soulmate workout. Even the most avid fitness buff isn't going to want to exercise if they don't enjoy their workout.
Group fitness classes are a great way to try everything and find what you love. Some class descriptions may not sound all that exciting or some might sound like downright torture. However, once you get into the class, the other participants, the energy of the room, the playlist or the instructor might actually make the class enjoyable and fun.
Modifications for all exercises should always be included in each class. So if you think the class might be too hard or even too easy, try the modified version. If you're new to class and the instructor hasn't personally introduced themselves to you, be sure to say hi. Let him/her know that you're new and that you're trying different classes to see what you may like. They may even have a few recommendations for you based on your interests and current fitness level and goals.
Prefer to workout solo? Most gyms also offer countless options with equipment for cardio and strength training. But looking at all the equipment can be confusing and overwhelming. Be sure to ask the trainers to show you how each piece of equipment works. Many gyms will also offer expert advice in regards to how you should be exercising and what equipment you should be using based on your fitness goals.
Partner up. Studies show that we are almost 78% more likely to stick with a workout or wellness routine if we include a partner. Your spouse, friend or other family members may be just what you need to help out with that accountability. Hiring a personal trainer or carpooling to the gym can be a great way to stay on track. It can be hard to cancel if you know someone is waiting on you.
Make small changes. Making drastic changes overnight can be discouraging. Its far easier to make smaller changes slowly overtime. Start by adding an extra vegetable serving with dinner or promise yourself that you'll limit meals out to once or twice a week. Add an extra 8 ounces of water consumption every few days or each week. Make it a goal to get the gym 3 or 4 times a week to start. Once those small changes become habit, keep adding on and keep going!
Make SMART goals. Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. Instead of saying "I'm going to lose weight this year", try saying "I'm going to lose 1 -2 lbs a week for the first 3 weeks". Once that smaller goal has been achieved, set more goals. Make sure the goals you set are realistic and can be achieved within a realistic time frame. Expecting to lose 15 lbs in 3 week is not only unrealistic but it can also set you up for failure, which in turn will deter you from continuing on.
Ask for advice. Don't be afraid to reach out to your fitness facilities staff members. Personal trainers, group fitness instructors and even front desk support staff can help you if you're confused about where to start or what's realistic.
Wellness and fitness trends are constantly evolving thanks to continued research in the field. Fitness professionals are more than happy to help. Proper form and technique are key to injury prevention and many times once we become injured we can't or don't continue on our wellness journey. Making sure we're exercising correctly from the start can help keep you safe and progressing on your 2018 fitness goals.