Fitness Beyond the Gym: How to Achieve your New Year’s Resolution of Better Health and Fitness

‘Get Fit’ Resolution
Are you ready to kick off the New Year with a bang! Likely in preparation for the New Year you have set your New Year’s Resolution and are ready to ring in the New Year with better health and abundance. One of the most common New Year’s Resolutions is to get in shape. “I’m going to lose 20 pounds by spring” or “I’m going to lose my baby fat this year.”

After a long holiday of binge eating, we are promised the world by a bunch of gym advertisements and infomercials with the “Get Fit Quick Solution.” Don’t allow yourself to fall into that trap this year. Instead of thinking you can transform your health in 30 days, think about setting a Resolution that has small actions steps and wins along the way.

We want you to be successful in achieving your goal of being more fit, not be disappointed that you failed. With small wins you will feel good in the process of achieving your overall resolution.

Why Do 92% of People Fail to Keep their Resolution?
Only 8% of people next year will achieve their resolutions. So many people start the New Year with the best intentions in mind, in many cases to get in shape. There is a bombardment of fitness advertisements on the television and social media. The motivation is high in January.

Then by February the motivation begins to fade. By March we have forgotten what our resolution was all together, and by November we are back to binge eating because “It’s the Holidays.”

Why do so many fail if so many people have the right intentions for a healthy new start?

The reason the majority of people fail is because they expect results too quickly. The “Get Fit Quick Solutions” either don’t work or are an unhealthy approach that is not sustainable.

The solution is to create a new lifestyle habit, not expect to get your resolution results right away. It takes time to achieve good health, but it is an investment of time worth making.

3 Tips to Turn Your Resolution into a Lifestyle Habit

  1. What is Your Why? Identify WHY you want to accomplish your resolution. Saying “I want to lose 20 pounds” isn’t meaningful. What will it mean to your life when you lose 20 pounds, WHY will it have a positive impact on your life? When you know the WHY driving your resolution, it will have more meaning, making it a higher priority to achieve.
  2. Set Action Steps: Action steps will help you implement and achieve your goal. Knowing when you will work on your resolution is important so you can set aside time each day or each week dedicated to achieving your goal. When you schedule your action steps you are integrating them into your routine to make them a new lifestyle habit.
  3. Identify Quick Wins: Always celebrate wins along the way of achieving your larger goal. Reward good behavior so you can feel good in the process. Instead of thinking “I have 15 more pounds to lose,” change your mindset to celebrate by saying “I just lost my first 5!” Be positive and celebrate small wins.

Why Fitness Beyond the Gym?
What most people don’t realize is that true fitness is not just what you do at the gym, or the amount of calories you burn. There are many components to fitness including aerobic, strength, balance, flexibility, and postural design.

We live in a sedentary society, where we are sedentary and sleeping more hours per day than we are active. We sit in slouched positions for hours and hours day after day, year after year. Going to the gym and working out for 30 minutes is beneficial and should be a lifestyle habit, but it’s not enough to reverse sedentary behaviors.

If you really want to be more fit in the New Year and make your fitness a priority, then you need to think about what you are doing at the gym, and how you can increase your fitness beyond the gym. Being more active during your workday will help you achieve your fitness goals.

Did you know that the difference between obese and non-obese workers is that non-obese workers stand up for 2 hours more per day? That’s it. That is the difference between obese and non-obese workers.

Standing up helps you slim down. If you stand 3 hours a day, 5 days per week that’s an extra 750 calories burnt! Start standing now, and by the end of the year you will burn an extra 30,000 calories, or 8 pounds of fat!

This is fitness beyond the gym.

Keep going to the gym, but in addition to that, think of ways that you can have a more active lifestyle. Here are 4 strategies to turn your “Get Fit Resolution” into a lifestyle habit.

4 ‘Fitness Beyond the Gym’ Tips to Be a Healthier You

  1. Focus on Your Posture– Good form is everything. When you have poor posture it can affect your balance, energy levels, and stress to the body. It is important to maintain good form while exercising, and proper posture throughout your workday.
  2. Prevent Flexion and Focus on Extension – Gravity is an ever present force pulling down on your body. That is why it is difficult to sit in good posture for prolonged periods of time, because gravity pulls you down. When you are working out you don’t want to do flexion exercises such as crunches and sit-ups that curl your body into a ball. Instead, do extension exercises for your core, this will help you have better posture inside and outside of the gym.
  3. Be an Active Sitter – While seated, increase the amount of activity you do by being active while seated. The more movement you do throughout the day the better. Examples of active sitting are sitting on a Posture Cushion or exercise ball, and moving your arms and legs in your chair.
  4. Stand Up at Work – Having a Sit-Stand Capable workspace is ideal. Standing up more often helps you prevent the ill health effects associated with prolonged sitting such as back pain, obesity, and chronic diseases. Perform the occupational tasks that you can while standing up, then sit down to take breaks. Sitting and standing throughout your workday is ideal.

These tips will help keep your body healthy to meet your fitness goals in the New Year. Celebrate the small wins along the way and remember, for best fitness results, do regular workouts, and be more active throughout your workday.

This will make all the difference in achieving your New Year’s Resolution of better health. You can be among the 8% of people who are successful this year in achieving a better quality of life.

To better health in the New Year.

References:
BBC News (2013) Calorie Burner: How Much Better is Standing Up than Sitting? BBC Magazine.

Diamond, D. (2013) Just 8% of People Achieve Their New Year’s Resolutions. Here’s How They Do It. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/dandiamond/2013/01/01/just-8-of-people-achieve-their-new-years-resolutions-heres-how-they-did-it/#792a3a07596b

Levine, J. & Miller, J. (2007) The energy expenditure of using a “walk‐and‐work” desk for office workers with obesity. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 41(9) p.558–561.

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