Tips for a successful fitness plan Lani Rieger January 7, 2015 Be Fit, Be Happy Having the right workout plan can make or break your fitness goals for the year. It’s January and most of us have made some kind of resolution to either lose weight or to eat healthier. The gym these days are a little busy with more new faces than usual but by February or March more than half of the newbies will have quit. Give yourself the best hope to stick to your fitness plan. Set your goals Set your personal goals to fit your lifestyle. What do you want to get out of it? Be specific with your plan. If you want to lose weight, how are you going to do that? Be specific such as, “I will cut out sugary foods and drink more water.” Be sure to make it fun and challenge yourself along the way. I write down what I eat daily and at the end of the week I measure what worked and what didn’t work for me. I adjust accordingly. I also have a timeline to complete my goal. Having a date will guide you to achieving your fitness goal. Work out with a friend Working out with your friend is a great way to stay on track with your fitness plan. I work out with several friends during the week to keep me motivated. I have a yogi friend I do hot yoga with once a week, I lift weights with another friend twice a week at the local gym near our house and I run twice a week with my coworker before or after work at the fitness center in our building. Working out with your friends can turn into a friendly competition. I’m not a gambling person but a friendly wager may just be that extra push you need to work out harder. Getting a personal trainer Getting a qualified personal trainer can really help you get started especially if you’ve never stepped into the gym before. Most personal trainers are very affordable and are offering deals this month so you can start the year off on the right foot. Do the research on their background and experience. Make sure the trainer is right for you and all of your needs. If the trainer isn’t meeting your needs, move on. It’s your time, money and body you are investing in. Some gyms offer group training and can be a lot fun. Not to mention, you’ll be able to meet like-minded people with similar fitness goals who can keep you motivated. Keep it interesting I work out 5 days a week, all year long. Going to the gym can get a bit boring. I make it a point to change my routine every few days. For example, I take a hot yoga class, next week I’ll take an Align & Flow yoga class and then I’ll take a cycling class with my girlfriend. When the weather is nice, I take it outside for a hike up the mountain. During the summer, I’m on the lake for some standup paddle boarding action. The point is is to keep it different and exciting. When I lift weights, I use isolation movements and routines. They are excellent for targeting the specific muscles and it gives me a variety of exercises for the week. If it’s been a while since your last visit to the gym, go with a basic plan such as walking, squats and throw in some planks for a good core workout. My go to fitness plan when I can’t get into the gym to lift weights are push-ups, crunches and squats. Gradually, add on each day to challenge your self. Now you have some great first steps to make fitness a habit and part of your lifestyle. See you in the gym!