How to Avoid Becoming a Fitness Failure

When it comes to fitness, no one likes being a failure, yet more than half
of new exercisers quit their program within the first six months. With a
little help you can ensure you’re not one of them. Give these ideas a try
as you begin your exercise program for the new year.

Set goals

If you don’t know where you are going, how will you know when you get
there? Setting short-term and long-term goals may increase your
chance of success. Your goals must give a clear picture of the end-point
to work towards. Use the SMART model, your goal should be Specific,
Measureable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-bound. Without these
you’ll never know if you have achieved the goal. You can’t just say “lose
weight or gain energy.” Instead say, “I will lose 10 pounds in 12 weeks
by doing strength training 3 times a week and cardio 3 times a week.”

Go for variety

Whether you do a home workout or belong to a gym, build your routine
on cross-training to keep things fresh and interesting, and keep yourself
from developing an injury. Frequently vary the order of your exercises
and mix in dumbbells, barbells, resistance tubing, machine or body
weight exercises. Don’t be afraid to take a class.

Track your progress

Write down your measurements and weight at the beginning of your
program. Keep a workout log and use it. Seeing results is a great
motivator. At least once a month, re-measure and review your log to see
advances in your aerobic fitness, strength, flexibility and body
composition.

Seek out support

A workout partner with similar goals and a positive attitude can make
your workout more fun. knowing you are accountable to another person
can be a great motivator too. So can working with a certified personal
trainer.

Devise a backup plan

Time and access are the largest obstacles to fitness, and even devoted
exercisers experience lapses. Don’t use these as excuses to avoid
exercise. Having some portable home workout gear like a stability ball,
resistance tubing, jump rope, and dumbbells, will allow you to work out
while traveling, at home or even at work. With limited time, focus on
compound
movements for the largest muscle groups and superset 2 for opposing
muscle groups. A brief but intense workout can be accomplished in a
few minutes.

Just do it

While pumping iron may not be right for everyone, the idea being active
is. Find something you enjoy doing that elevates your heart rate and
challenges you most days of the week. Also pay attention to how you
feel. If you are like most people in as little as three weeks you will find
yourself
sleeping better and feeling more rested.

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