A New You

A New You: How to Make it Happen

Throughout the year, we receive multiple messages about improving our health: lose weight, start a regular routine, go to the gym more often, eat better and smarter, etc. Fitness clubs are jammed each New Year with resolution-inspired workout novices trying to “reboot” their fitness program. By mid-February, the aerobics machines do not have long lines; the classes return to a manageable size and the “want-to-be-fit” novices are nowhere to be seen.

What happened?

In my opinion, what is missing is the relationship that a wellness coach, personal trainer or even a committed friend with a fitness lifestyle can bring to the novice—no matter what age. It really is helpful to work with someone who can help develop meaningful goals and appropriate rewards based on motivation and commitment. Reasonable goals and achievable objectives require teamwork and a major dose of reality therapy. In spite of the claims of some ads—lose 30 pounds in 30 days—it isn’t going to happen that way. If it did, it wouldn’t be a healthy way to become more fit.

No one wants to feel guilty or defeated due to repeated unsuccessful efforts to become healthier and more fit. So how can people be successful and “make it happen?”

The components for success include:

  • Adequate and appropriate baseline testing and assessment by a qualified health professional.
  • A visit to your personal physician if any of the questions in the EASY (Exercise and Screening for You) toolhttp://www.easyforyou.info/ generate additional questions based on your answers.
  • A long-range plan with short-term achievable objectives determined by you and your fitness coach.
  • A program that includes activities and food choices that you enjoy and will continue to practice consistently as you begin to change unhealthy habits or poor choices.
  • A simple but complete system to measure progress.
  • Intrinsic or even extrinsic rewards that you deserve as you develop and maintain new healthy habits. These rewards could be buying new fitness outfit, going out to dinner with a friend or maintaining a personal journal of discovery and encouragement. What’s important is that the reward is meaningful.
  • Support from family, friends and your significant other.
  • Fun!

No matter what age you are or what time of year it is, following the guidelines above will lead to a sustained fitness program—and a new you.

Article Provided by:
Marge Coalman, EdD, 
Vice President of Wellness & Program, Touchmark
Coalman’s many responsibilities include overseeing the Waterford Health & Fitness Club in Vancouver

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