New Year New You: Top Ten Fitness Tips

new-year-s-resolution-take-charge-of-your-health-nowNew Year, New You; right? Well it is January again, and are you wondering if you can really stick with your New Year’s fitness resolutions? If getting in shape, and staying in shape is one of yours, it’s probably not the first time you’ve tried it. I’ve spent a lot of my career studying why fitness programs succeed or fail and developing methods to help people succeed. So, Happy New Year, here are my Top 10 Tips to help you ward off decrepitude.

New Year New You Top Ten Tips

•  Start slowly and go at your own pace. Staying in your comfort zone separates the pain from the gain. You’ll get the most benefit with the lowest risk of injury, especially if you’ve been inactive for some time.

•   Find the right kind of exercise for you. Choose activities you like or at least don’t hate. It doesn’t have to be complicated. It can be as simple as taking a brisk walk.

•   Pick a time of the day that is most convenient for you to exercise.  Try to stick with that schedule. Studies show that people who exercise at the same time every day are more likely to stick with it.

•  Before getting out of bed each day, take a moment to visualize yourself fit. Thinking of yourself as a fit person will help make it happen. Professional athletes do this daily.

•  Keep an exercise log. You’ll get a feeling of accomplishment when you stick to your program and will be able to chart your progress.

  • Wear comfortable clothing and shoes with good support. Cotton is a breathable classic. But check out the super lightweight fabrics like cool-max that wick the sweat from your skin. When buying shoes, don’t feel weird about actually exercising in them in the store before plunking down the big bucks. I can’t tell you how many pairs of sneakers I have thrown against the wall before I learned this.

•   Exercise with a friend or family member. Supporting each other’s efforts helps keep you on track. One of my students loves to go mall walking with her friend in the early morning at speed and then coming back later for some retail therapy.

•   Music is a powerful motivator. Pick music you love that makes you want to move. There are fitness music companies that sell CDs with popular tunes played at specific beats per minute. They’ll tell you what speed works for particular types of exercise.

•   Consider professional guidance, especially if you’ve been inactive.  If you don’t want to join a gym or can’t afford a trainer, consider a beginner-level exercise video by a certified teacher so you’ll see the exercises demonstrated properly.

•   Set short-term, easily attainable goals, such as doing some form of exercise two or three days a week to start.  Change your goal when it becomes too easy.

It’s rare when anyone succeeds at anything right out of the gate. That’s why “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again” is a classic proverb. So if you fall off the wagon one day, just climb back on board the next. And remember you’re not a failure, you’re a success story in progress.

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New Year Resolutions: Exercise For Health!

New Year ResolutionsIt’s the beginning of January and I’ll bet most of us have either not started or already abandoned our New Year
resolutions. New Year resolutions can seem to be hard to keep. Maybe it’s because we ask too much of ourselves.

Take New Year Resolutions that focuses on getting fit resolutions instance. Ever start an exercise program in the New Year, maybe this year, only to quit after a couple of weeks?
Me too! Why is exercise so hard to stick with?
I’ve been health coaching and teaching classes for over 20 years and the reason I’ve heard most often from my clients is, it’s too hard. You want to do it. You know fitness equals longevity.
You know you should do it. You know you have to do it, but you hate it. It’s not fun. You push yourself for a couple of weeks and then you can’t do it any more, so you quit. You’ve tried this a bunch of times over the years and quit every time. Sound familiar? Why do so many of us get stuck in that cycle of fitness failure, and how can we break that cycle?
I’ve given this a lot of thought over the years, and I’ve developed a structure that works for most of my clients. I’m happy to share it with you.

New Year Resolutions Bullet Points

· Exercise shouldn’t feel like getting your teeth drilled! Don’t do anything you hate because you think you should. I think that’s an express ticket to Quitsville. Exercise should be a pleasure, not a chore. If it feels good today, you’ll want to get up and do it again tomorrow. Embrace the movement experience. Get up and do a couple of minutes of limbering and stretching or take a short easy walk.

Here is a video to help get you started.

Be conscious of how good it feels while you’re moving and how nice it feels afterwards. Find a time in the day when you can do it daily. I like mornings, but any time that works is fine.

— Recognize where you are now and adjust your immediate expectations accordingly. Ease in to exercise. Remember that you quit last time because you pushed it and it was no fun. You’ll need to craft a program for yourself that starts you where you are and builds you up to where you want to go in easily doable steps. Set readily attainable very short-term goals like “I’m going to move three days this week for five minutes.” At the end of the week you can look back and say: ” I just went from not exercising to exercising three times a week.”

— Trust the process. It doesn’t matter if you exercise for five minutes each day. The week before last you did nothing. Continue to set these easily attainable short-term goals forever. Find activities you like. Keep it pleasant and you’ll want more. Leave your body wanting more every time you exercise.

— Progress at your own pace. You’re on nobody’s timetable but your own. Don’t give in to peer pressure, however subtle, and forget those TV ads for instant success. My rule of thumb for progress is this: add a little more only when it gets too easy, not because it’s been a week and you feel like it’s time to do more.

— Be patient. That sounds pretty darn counter intuitive I know. I think today’s society wants instant gratification and immediate success. Sorry, not going to happen if you’re looking at success as immediately achieving your ultimate goal. That’s where adjusting your immediate expectations comes in. You probably won’t be able to run a marathon right away. And, those high-intensity, total immersion, 12-weeks-to-a-Greek-body-if-you-don’t-die-trying programs probably won’t work for you either. Not yet.

That’s the plan. It’s a simple plan. It takes longer to get there, but it’s a pleasant journey, not a grunt. Most importantly, it’s sustainable for a lifetime. So hop on the slow train and take it as far as you want. I think it might be your ticket to Successville.

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Fitness Myths: Why We Success or Fail

Fitness MythsFitness Myths: Why We Success or Fail.

Before you make your New Year’s Fitness Resolutions, here’s some food for thought.

Many of today’s fitness programs are all about the quick sell and even quicker results. Many are based on dangerous fitness myths.

Here are 5 fitness myths to steer away from:

Fitness Myths # 1: No Pain No Gain:

It is a popular misconception that only when you feel the pain are you gaining anything from your workout.

The “no pain, no gain” mentality contributes to more injuries and more burnout than any other fitness factor, especially among my age group (baby boomers).

It is wiser to exercise sustainably over a longer term, than to push yourself to the breaking point.

Fitness Myths # 2: A Taskmaster Equals the Best Teacher

Reality Exercise Shows that have recently become popular portray drill-sergeant-style trainers as being the most effective fitness mentors.

While leveraging fear and using intimidation techniques may mean instant short-term fitness results, they’re sending the wrong message about how to get and stay fit for a lifetime.

Attainable short-term goals and positive reinforcement are more likely to create good fitness habits that are sustainable for life.

Fitness Myths #3: Pumping up the Volume Equals Pumping up Your Physique

It seems some fitness instructors think screaming louder and blasting the bass is motivational. It’s time to think again.

While high-decibel workouts might be temporarily motivational, over time these techniques become draining and stressful leading to faster fitness burnout.

Look instead for uplifting music and gentle coaching in your workouts.

Fitness Myths # 4: Fitness Equals a Fight Against Your Body

Sales pitches that encourage “shaving off the pounds” and busting your abs or your butt have solidified the image of fitness as a battle against your body.

Fighting is not a sustainable activity or philosophy. Instead, think of partnering with your body. Meet it where it is at right now and provide the environment and tools to reveal your body’s best potential.

When you take this approach you are setting yourself up for success every step of the way.

Fitness Myths #5: Force Equals Fit

Today’s popular exercise routines promote pounding your body into shape. But ancient movement modalities, such as Dance, Yoga and Tai Chi had it right.

Fitness is not about pumping the most iron or performing the most reps, it is about teaching your body how to move efficiently, using all of your muscles groups, and sustaining these movements over time.

Exercise including strength training should be approached as a gradual lifetime process. This way, exercise becomes a pleasure not a chore.

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Visualize Yourself Fit

visualize yourself fit If you visualize yourself fit, you will help make it happen. As January approaches
we vow to lose weight, get fit, quit smoking, and hope to transform our lives.

So why do we try and fail year after year and why have so many of us given up that resolution nonsense altogether?
I think it’s because we were setting ourselves up to fail instead of succeed.
We push ourselves too hard to do too much too soon to change habits that took half a lifetime to cultivate and expect that’s going to be ok with us and it’s not.
If we want to change long standing habits we need to look at it differently.
We need to see ourselves differently. See yourself thin. Feel what it’s like to be thin. Consider yourself a thin person, a non-smoker, whatever.

World-class athletes live by this. It really works. And it works for everything.

Here are two mind-body techniques they use and you can use right away to help set those resolutions into motion.

Visualization: happens mostly on the right side of the brain, the part that controls emotion, intuition and nonlinear thought.
So if your goal is to lose 10 pounds you visualize yourself 10 pounds thinner maybe by wearing that pair of jeans you have been wanting to get into again.
Don’t just see yourself as having lost the weight. See yourself as a thin person, someone who was always thin and will always be thin.
That mental image can replace the one you now have of yourself and help you transform your behavior on both a conscious and subconscious level.
It can allow you to finally put that desire into permanent action.

Affirmations: By engaging in positive self-talk you can change what you believe about yourself. You can speak to yourself silently or out loud in short phrases that start with
“I am
And don’t be afraid to say you are who you really want to be.
Repeat several times until you are able to clear your mind of anything but that particular affirmation.

Once you see and hear how it feels to be someone who has already reached their goal, you can use the same techniques to set and achieve easy short-term interim goals.
For instance if your goal is to become fit, you can start by visualizing and feeling yourself having exercised today and affirm with “I will exercise 5 minutes today”

As long as you have plausible expectations and don’t say stuff like I’m 6 feet tall when you’re 5’6, you can make amazing changes real.

“I am going to have the best year ever in 2015”. Happy New You”

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It’s Fashion Flash Monday!

Fashion FlashIt’s Fashion Flash Monday and our host today is Jodell from Blackcatplus the go to site for the latest and best in plus size fashions. There are plenty of choices to help you look your best in 2014!

As for the rest of us Fashion Flash bloggers we committed to giving you the most current info, tips and trends on fashion, fitness and beauty for women 40+.

 

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