With 2016 rapidly approaching, many of you are probably scrambling to get your New Year’s resolutions sorted out. Among other things, most of us usually have at least one fitness related resolution we would like to achieve in the New Year. We gathered the best tips for starting and sticking to a new fitness routine in 2016.
1. Design your fitness routine:
• It is much easier to stick to a routine if you spend a few minutes and map out exactly what you want to accomplish. Are you looking to lose weight or build muscle definition? Are you training for a bout or a marathon? Having clear goals will help you gauge your progress. It ALWAYS helps to write these goals down since you are more prone to stick to a written plan.
• Make sure your routine is balanced and schedule it as part of your day. Most adults should aim for 2 ½ to 3 hours of moderate intensity activity a week. Schedule time to exercise as you would any other appointment. You can even go as far as to incorporate your leisure activity into it. Catch up on your favorite show while you’re on the treadmill, or listen to an audiobook while you hit the bag.
2. Keep it interesting:
• Cross training is a fantastic way to keep boredom at bay and make the most out of your time. Different activities help reduce chances of injuring or overworking one specific muscle or joint. Alternate between activities that focus on different parts of the body, such as running, strength training, or boxing.
• Be creative with your routine as well! Not all exercise needs to be done the conventional way. Take the family for a weekend hike, go to a dance class, or even try a vigorous boot camp!
3. Assemble the proper equipment:
• Make sure you have a good pair of athletic shoes designed for the type of activity you have in mind. If you are participating in the combat arts, make sure you have wraps, proper gloves, and appropriate safety gear. Don’t let being unprepared be an excuse for not sticking to your routine!
4. Start slowly and give yourself time to recover:
• Give yourself the time to both warm up and cool down. Start with a plyometric drills or jump rope, and finish with stretching or a light jog. Once warmed up, start with activity you can maintain for 20-30 minutes and gradually build on that as your stamina increases.
• Make sure you give yourself time to recover! It’s easy to be really aggressive when you first start a new routine, but it is important that you give your body time to heal and get stronger.
5. Monitor your progress:
• Keep track of your progress, preferably on paper. This can take any form you like, but it important to do so you know if you are reaching your goals and if you need to make any adjustments along the way. If your aim is to lose weight, track your weight loss and, more importantly, your measurements. If your focus is strength training, aim for a PR or one rep max. Nothing will help you stick with a routine better than seeing what you accomplish on a regular basis!
Follow these guidelines to keep your routine on track throughout the entire year. Make sure you personalize them to meet your specific needs and, above all else, make sure you have fun! We wish you all a very happy New Year. Now, go crush your goals for 2016!
December 29, 2015