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Get Serious About Fitness and Weight Loss

Are you into fitness? Yeah, fit’n dis slice of pizza into my mouth. If your New Year’s resolution was to get fit and lose weight, then I’ve got some news for you. If it were easy, everyone would do it. The problem is that everyone tries to do it, especially right after the holidays, but fails miserably. If you’ve gone to the gym recently, then you know everyone and their cousin is crammed into the aerobics area, spin class, or waiting to use the treadmills, ellipticals, bicycles, etc. So, what’s a person to do who’s truly serious about getting fit and losing weight?

An article on CNN’s website titled, “How to keep your New Year’s fitness resolution from failing,” reveals that a study has shown nearly one out of four people has made a resolution to increase fitness and activity, yet 67 percent of people in their 20s and a whopping 84 percent over 50 didn’t meet their fitness goals. Don’t be one of those people! Make fitness social, assign deadlines to your goals and commit to them, have fun, and, like an ad for Nike says, “Just do it!”

Not everyone works out the same way, has the same goals or uses the same motivation to stay committed. That means you’re free to choose what works best for you. One potential way to stay engaged is to join a group, class, or club. That way, if you don’t show up to work out, then you may feel that you’re letting down the rest of the team. Another way is to pay in advance, or even hire a personal trainer. By not using those workout sessions, then you may feel you’re wasting money. Once you determine the best solution to keep you active, it’s time to quantify results.

Goals are nice, but if I were to say that my goal was to spend 30 minutes in the gym three days a week, I could accomplish that, but hardly do any activity at all other than talking to people there. What you need are measurable numbers such as losing a certain amount of weight, running so many miles, or slimming down to a specific size of clothing. Once you’ve determined a number, specify a difficult, but attainable, deadline. Losing 10 pounds is easy if you have an entire year in which to do it. To help you measure your progress, you can keep a log, enter data in an app, or purchase a FitBit or other wearable device that keeps track of your activity.

All of this may still not be enough to keep you from quitting early. A comedian once said that she doesn’t run because, “have you ever seen a runner with a smile on her face?” If the exercise or diet routine you’re doing isn’t fun, then stop doing it and find something that is. With the plethora of options available these days, there’s no reason not to find something that makes you happy while you’re doing it while on your way to keeping that New Year’s resolution.

So, you’re having fun and you’re making progress, but watch out for injuries. If you’re just dieting, make sure you’re still getting all the nutrients your body needs. Starving yourself or using a fad diet that neglects essential vitamins can cause more harm than good. If you’re exercising, there will always be aches and pains associated with it as long as you’re pushing your limits. The problem is when mild discomfort turns into a serious injury. If the pain causes you to alter normal day-to-day activities, or doesn’t go away after a few days, then it may be time to scale back your workout routine or even see a doctor depending on the severity of the pain.

Finally, remember that you’re probably not going to win any medals or even be at the top of your fitness class, but it’s important not to stop. Again, don’t be one of those people who quit! Find what works, what makes you happy, and then stick with it. Good luck!