I still believe in goals, big ones even. But my advice is to break them down into small, sustainable goals. That goes for anything, but today I’m talking about fitness. Rather than make the resolution to “Get fit in 2017” set a specific goal like, “I’m doing strength training Monday-Tuesday-Thursday.”
I set a similar goal a while back and it’s been one of the most wonderful additions to my life. I love the happy glow of post-workout endorphins. For me, the hard part was sticking to my goal after realizing how long my journey would be. For example, when I started I couldn’t hold plank position. In moments like these, be gentle on yourself. Otherwise, you’re more likely to think, “I can’t do it, so I won’t do it.” Instead I told myself, “This is where I’m starting. I’m gonna keep going and see if I can get incrementally better at this.”
I did. Here are a few more things I’ve learned along the way:
· Making fitness a part of your life is not about motivation, because motivation is fleeting.
· Consistency, especially in the beginning, is more important. That’s how habits are formed.
· Try different activities, you might be surprised which ones you enjoy.
· Seek out trainers that are a good fit for you (e.g. body-positive, encouraging vs. intimidating)
· Your workout should be challenging, not excruciating.
· Cute workout clothes are a fun way to kick off a new fitness goal.
· Always bring water.
· Listen to your body. It’s good to push boundaries, but do so safely.
· If life happens, don’t sweat missed workouts. Just start again when you can.
I love Planet Fitness for its judgement-free attitude and welcoming environment, which is especially important to anyone starting out. I’m so happy to share their new membership sale: new members can join now through January 11 for $1. It’s $10/month thereafter, no commitment. You can find your local club here, many are open 24-7.
If you’re starting a fitness journey, I would love for us to stay in touch so I can support what you’re doing and keep the discussion going in this or future active/wellness posts. Happy New Year!
In collaboration with Planet Fitness
Photos by Jessica Castro