Have you ever considered how many New Year’s Eve holidays many of us have used to make new fitness or weight loss goals? Have you been able to stick with your resolutions past March or April? January is typically known for setting new goals relating to physical health, but why wait until then? The fall season is a GREAT time to start or revamp your fitness program because you will create new habits that can last through the tough holiday season which is when we really need the push. Read the following 5 tips to stay motivated as the season changes:
- Change your mindset. If you are a parent then this is the time of year when your schedule changes since your kids are going back to school. Think of it as the time of year when your schedule also changes with the start of a new fitness regimen. Perhaps you have to start taking your kids to the bus stop, driving them to school, picking them up from practice or other activities? This is the perfect time to integrate your own new exercise schedule into the routine.
- Appreciate the cooler weather. The cooler weather is perfect for exercising outdoors and with Colorado’s picturesque scenery, we should all take advantage of being outside. The environment is perfect for walking, hiking or riding a bike and you might be tempted to increase your duration since the weather is not too hold or cold. Discover new trails near your home and make it convenient to throw on your shoes and get out. Throw a Frisbee with the kids or play fetch with your dog in a nearby park. If you live near a lake, try kayaking or canoeing which are both great whole-body workouts.
- Burn calories by raking leaves. Did you know the average 150 pound person burns 235 calories in 45 minutes by raking leaves? Kill two or three birds with one stone by 1: Doing something that needs to be done anyway, 2: Burning calories while doing it, and 3: Performing a good deed by doing something nice for your neighbor (which means you burn twice as many calories!). Of course the faster you work, the more intense your workout will be so get moving!
- Try something new. Most local gyms create new schedules during this time of year and add classes that are considered ‘in’. Pick up a Tabata class for some serious intervals, TRX to train using your own body weight, HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) for a mixture of cardio and strength or an Aerial class to create a lean, toned appearance. This is a great time to learn new skills and challenge muscles you don’t normally train.
- Remember the 30 day rule. Experts say that it takes about 4 weeks to turn an action into a habit but unfortunately many people fall off within the first couple of weeks. Making changes and sticking with it is hard, but not impossible. When the weather changes and it gets colder and darker in the morning, don’t hit the snooze button no matter how tempting it is. Stay on track with your new mindset and stick with your commitment, and you will start seeing the results you are looking for. Whenever the going gets tough, think about these 3 C’s: Convenience, consistency and commitment. Making exercise convenient with your schedule, staying consistent with your routine and making a commitment to yourself (and someone else!) will help you stick with it well past 30 days and you will look great in your swimsuit next year.
While making New Year’s resolutions is a great way to start the new year, there really is no reason to wait for it. Start now with a new season which means changes in your own life with regards to your exercise routine. Doing something different will challenge your body in a new way, giving you improved results. Take a friend with you to a new fitness class or just start a new walking routine in your own neighborhood while enjoying the changing colors that Fall brings. Stay committed, be consistent and make it convenient!
Contributor: Kim Farmer of Mile High Fitness. Mile High Fitness offers in-home personal training and corporate fitness solutions. Visit www.milehighfitness.com/personaltraining or email firstname.lastname@example.org.