1. Surround Yourself with Health – Little things such as fresh fruit in a bowl on the counter and foods in clear containers in your fridge will help keep you on track to eating healthy. Keeping healthy foods in your house will force you to have to eat healthy. If you don’t have chips, cookies, soda in front of you, you will be much less likely to eat it. Fruit has a lot of natural sugar and therefore can help curve your cravings for that unhealthy, late night snack.
2. Determine WHY you Exercise – Are you exercising to lose weight? To feel better? To look better? To be able to keep up with your children or grandchildren? To live a happier, healthier life? Figure out what your external motivation is to keep yourself going when its tough and you would rather skip the gym today. Get into a routine and stick to it. There are no excuses to not living a healthy life.
3. List Your Fears – and Conquer Them – Whether you struggle with feeling comfortable in front of people you don’t know or the fear you are doing an exercise incorrectly, go at your own pace. I find a lot of people resort to the cardio equipment because they don’t know how to do things out on the floor properly or they are unhappy with the shape they are in. ASK QUESTIONS! Our staff is always willing to answer questions when we are roaming around the gym.
4. Build a “Business Plan” – Again, reassess what your goals are and how you are going to get there. Having a personal trainer to assist you in setting a specific exercise plan built for you is a great way to learn how to properly exercise safely and efficiently. Determine what you want to achieve and the deadline you want to meet it by and STICK WITH IT!
5. Find Something you Love – Exercise should be fun, not just something you feel you HAVE to do everyday. Find a group exercise class such as Zumba, Body Combat, or cycling and take it once a week as a treat to yourself for a job well done. Remember it is very important to incorporate cardio and resistance training into your workouts. Muscle burns more calories than fat and you will continue to burn calories after you leave the gym as well.
6. Focus on a Feeling – Instead of focusing on a specific number on the scale or a pant size you just can’t seem to comfortably fit into, keep your mind determined to a particular feeling. You never want to leave the gym feeling as though you didn’t work hard and one step closer to reaching your goal. Make sure you have a good sweat going and worked your muscles well. Focus on how you feel after you have eaten a healthy meal or drank an adequate amount of water during the day, compared to the days that you have skipped a workout, eaten fast food and drank sugary drinks.
7. Stop the Daily Weigh-Ins – Weight loss, just like weight gain, does not happen over night. Continually jumping on the scale every morning will cause you to get discouraged. Get a calendar and weigh yourself every 4-6 weeks. Keeping a record of where you started and your continual progress will keep you motivated for the weeks to come.
8. There’s an App for That – One of the most common mistakes in a healthy lifestyle is bad eating habits. People tell me all the time “I eat healthy,” and I quickly point out even though you think you have healthy habits, chances are you could improve something that will have a big impact, such as eating breakfast, keeping your metabolism up, keeping your amount of sugar and sodium low, and keeping yourself out of starvation mode.
9. Reward yourself – Give yourself short and long term goals. Every time you reach one of your short term goals reward yourself! Whether its a top you didn’t feel comfortable buying before or a movie night (without the buttery popcorn) treat yourself for a job well done.
10. Imagine your Life if you DON’T Lose the Weight – For a lot of people, the motivation of what they will look and feel like once they have lost the weight is motivation enough, but for others the thought of think of what their life will be like if they stay where you are now. Will you develop some sort of health condition? Weak muscle and joints can lead to injury overtime. Figure out what drives you and be consistent. Working out for a week and taking two weeks off won’t help you reach your goals.