A new year is here and for many that means time to make resolutions to get in better shape. Sticking to those New Year’s resolutions isn’t always easy. Local health and fitness experts weigh in on how to make the most of the start of a new year to make a change for better health and wellness.
“Don’t try to change too much at once,” advised Christina Mann, owner and fitness instructor at Fitness on Fleek in Boonville. “Start with better food choices and the nutrition side. If you can’t read the ingredients list we probably don’t need to eat it. Shop the perimeters of the grocery store for best food choices. Then start taking purposeful daily walks. That alone will make you feel better and lose weight. You will have more energy and sleep better as well. Once you have developed that habit add in 30 minutes to an hour of exercise two to three days per week. You will need both cardiovascular and strength training. Soon the healthy lifestyle you’ve been living becomes your new habit and you can challenge your body and mind by increasing exercise to five to six days per week. No matter what fitness level we should always take a rest day.”
Heather Mosteller, Engagement Coordinator at the Yadkin YMCA added, “focus on specific fitness and wellness goals, rather than so much at one time. People are more successful when they set small goals, achieve those and then set additional goals, working towards the overall main goal.”
“Reframe the mind to let go of those words like ‘can’t’ and use words like ‘haven’t yet,’ because how much effort would you give if you start with can’t?” Mosteller added.
Mosteller and Mann both noted the importance of finding a friend to be accountable to for fitness and wellness goals in the new year.
“Find an accountability partner,” said Mann.”That could be a friend, Facebook group, online coach or group exercise classes. It will help keep you on track.”
“Working out with a buddy allows you to combine friends and fitness which makes your workout fun,” said Mosteller.
Making healthy food choices and drinking plenty of water are also important.
“Focus on well balanced nutrition, with emphasis on macronutrients (carbohydrates, protein and fat) and use that as fuel for exercise,” said Mosteller.
“Don’t rely on some fad diet that isn’t sustainable. Do make healthier choices to fuel your body,” added Mann.
Mann encouraged those looking to make a healthy change in 2020 to focus on making themselves a priority.
“Prioritize your health and schedule time to exercise just like you would a doctor appointment,” she said. “Plan ahead time for your workout. Pack a gym bag to keep in your car. Failing to plan is planning to fail.”
“Throw out the scale,” Mann concluded. “Fit comes in all shapes and sizes. The scale does not measure body fat. Rely more on measurements and how you physically feel to determine progress. Don’t try to be perfect, just be consistent. Don’t be too hard on yourself. If you fall off, get back on. The key is to never give up. Motivation comes and goes, discipline is needed. Change takes time, quitting won’t make it happen any sooner. Slow progress is better than no progress. Your body can do anything, it’s your mind you have to convince.”
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.
A fitness class at Fitness on Fleek in Boonville.