Yes, it is that time again already. This is the time of year that people make and break their resolutions, becoming discouraged with not accomplishing their health and wellness goals. Don’t let this happen to you this year!
A healthy lifestyle is much more than just starting to exercise or eat better. Lifestyle encompasses the entire well-being of an individual, and you must commit to a lifestyle change in order to succeed. Your overall well-being is defined as your mind, body and soul, and sometimes a change on just one level will directly affect what it will take to keep your promise of better health this New Year.
Beginning to exercise or starting a new exercise regimen will help you to meet the change required for your body. There are key factors that will determine the success and longevity of your commitment to exercise. First must be your motivation and goal setting. Identify which “specific” and “realistic” health and wellness goals you would like to accomplish and put a time frame on when and how you are going to achieve them. In most cases the help of fitness professionals such as degreed exercise physiologists or personal trainers may be helpful, as they can put together a safe, efficient and effective exercise plan to keep you on track. They will also provide the accountability that is another key factor. Whether it be working with a personal trainer, workout buddy, or group of friends consistency and accountability are a huge part of completing a change in your lifestyle. This will make exercise more fun and provide you with the necessary motivation to not fall short of your goals. Lastly, varying your activities and exercises will keep your motivation high and avoid those discouraging plateaus most exercisers will encounter along the way. Incorporating things like swimming, hiking, group exercise classes, basketball or rock climbing, along with your fitness equipment regiment, will provide you alternative ways to work out. Don’t live on a treadmill! You must keep a well-balanced exercise plan with various activities to further your progress and keep the motivation and goals moving forward. THIS WILL ALSO HELP TO AVOID MOTIVATION CRIPPLING FITNESS PLATEAUS!
Building exercise into your daily lifestyle is also a crucial component to your success. When selecting your path to better health and wellness, you also need to make time for exercise and plan when and where you are going to fit it in to your busy schedule. Are you going to be an early morning, lunchtime or evening exerciser? And how do you find at least 2-4 hours per week to do so? Those people that make exercise part of their day by treating it as an extension of your workday will be the most successful and commit to change on a long-term basis. But remember: exercise is not work; it should be enjoyable and stress relieving!
Incorporating exercise into your daily routine will affect your entire state of well-being, as a healthier you will feed positive energy into your mind and help you to have a more up-beat outlook on life. Exercise also creates healthy relationships with positive and motivating people to foster a happy and healthy environment for you to flourish in. Good luck with your health and wellness goals this year and remember don’t resolve, COMMIT!
Membership Manager for Akron General LifeStyles
Contributions by: Laurie Cingle, M.Ed, ACSM, NASM, Group Fitness Manager, LifeStyles