Betty Doyling: Make A Resolution For Life

March 18, 2013

[Written by Betty Doyling] Did you decide in January to “Get Fit Fast” and start working out again? Has it “worked out” for you?

For many, they begin without a specific plan or goal. Taking this approach may cause failure and disappointment. You may have asked yourself, “What am I doing wrong?” or you might have even considered quitting all together. If these thoughts and others have passed through your mind, here are a few tips that can help steer you in the right direction.

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#1: Set Realistic Goals

  • You must have a goal in mind when starting a fitness regime. Your goal[s] could be to lose body fat, to gain muscle or to increase your endurance. Whatever your fitness goal[s] may be, make sure it is realistic. If you haven’t worked out in weeks, months or years but decide you want to run May 24th [NOT recommended by the way!], don’t try this on your first training session! You’ll probably get injured, want to quit or give up exercising all together. Instead, set small reachable goals that you can accomplish. Each success will build your confidence and provide you with positive reinforcement. Accomplishing your goals will give you encouragement and help build your momentum toward the ultimate goal – which is getting and staying in shape.

#2: Find a Nutrition Plan that Works For You

  • This one is personal and is probably the most ignored. Have you noticed those that regularly workout but never seem to shed those unwanted pounds? That used to be ME! I learned, that without a plan I was left wondering if my workouts were really making a difference. If you don’t eat right, all the exercise in the world won’t help you. Following the latest fad diet, or the latest island craze doesn’t count as a plan!
  • Nutrition accounts for about 75% of your results. Environment ALWAYS trumps will power. If your environment [aka "your kitchen"] has the very foods you are trying to stay away from, then no amount of will power will be able to keep you away. Eventually, the walls will crack and you’ll crumble into temptation when you feel lonely, stressed, or not so good about yourself. I’d recommend going through your fridge and pantry today and identify which foods really need to be there and which ones don’t. You’ll feel an internal battle brewing in your head as you purge the crap out of your house but it’s the best thing you can do for your health and your sanity.You have to make major changes to what you are eating in order to increase your health and fitness.
  • If what you are currently eating is not helping you lose weight, gain muscle or making you healthier STOP EATING IT! Talk to a dietician, personal trainer or lifestyle coach that can advise you further. Remember, your goal is a lifestyle change that will have a lasting impact on your health and wellness forever.

#3: Cardio isn’t the Only Component

  • Running on the treadmill or brisk walking outside is the only form of exercise that you consistently do, but the results are not what you want. Doing cardio is only one important part of your fitness program.
  • If you include resistance training and stretching to your cardio routine your body will receive a comprehensive workout which will aid in fat loss and muscle gain. There are many weight training options such as bodyweight exercises, free weights and resistance bands. Make your cardio count by trying something different like HITT [High-Intensity Interval Training] or Tabata [4 minute interval training sessions] training. Stretch, get stronger and transform your entire body.

#4: Take it Easy [Somewhat]

  • Monday is here and you start your workout and do things that you haven’t done in years. On Tuesday, your body is so sore that you can barely get out of bed. So you skip a day to recover but the soreness still doesn’t go away. A week passes and you haven’t worked out at all! Don’t try and and enter the Guinness Book of World Records on your first day!If you haven’t worked out in a while you’ll need to ease into it. Start exercising 2-3 times a week. When weight training use light weights with high reps. Start walking first then when you are ready begin running slowly. Be smart and listen to your body. Make the most of the workout, but don’t try and work every muscle you have every time you exercise! Focus on a couple of different muscle groups. Once your workout is no longer a challenge, then cautiously take it up a notch!

#5: Get Some Help

  • It’s challenging even for me to wake up and go to the gym. I make tons of excuses such as, “I should stay and make the kids a warm breakfast, or help Hubby with the kids.” When in reality the kids will eat cold cereal and fruit, and Hubby will help me! Flying solo has its benefits, but sometimes a workout partner can be a great motivator. If you are by yourself you will come up with hundreds of excuses to put it off, or quit altogether. Or you’ll waste your time doing things that you think are making you progress [such as 100 crunches after a chicken & fries takeout meal]. In addition, there won’t be anyone there to tell you it’s not working.
  • Start hanging out with people who have an interest in improving their own health. This is a great way to keep in contact with like minded people. Your friends that are drinking beer and eating chicken wings every night don’t count! Form a group of people who will work out together. They can hold each other accountable for their actions. Encouragement from a group is a great way to stay motivated. Make sure you celebrate as a group when goals are accomplished.
  • Making good fitness and healthy choices before you start working out again can drastically improve your results. Set realistic goals, find a nutrition plan that fits your lifestyle, mix up your workouts [Boot Camp, Crossfit, Zumba, Yoga]. Enjoy your workout and B*Active!

Betty Doyling is a certified fitness trainer and figure competitor with over 7 years of experience. She specializes in all levels of health and personal fitness with a focus on nutritional guidance to help the individual change their mind set from being focused on appearance, to a more balanced lifestyle involving diet and exercise. She can be reached via her Facebook page, “B-Active For Life.”

The advice given in this article is not intended to replace medical advice, but to complement it. Always consult your GP if you have any health concerns. Please note that she is not a registered dietitian.

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Articles that link to this one:

  1. Get Healthy And Stay In Shape | Health News Blog | March 25, 2013
  1. Royce-Ann says:

    Thanks Betty, motivational read! felt like you were talking directly to me, and I should know better. RAJames RD

  2. Hilary says:

    Great article , sound practical advice. Just whats need to make realistic changes . Thanks Betty!

  3. Cynthia Thomas says:

    Betty’s article is very good and informative. I hope that many read it and draw inspiration from her for their fitness goals. I agree wholeheartedly with Betty and appreciate the encouragement she provides through this article.

  4. Pattie says:

    Excellent article, very useful and informative.

    Thanks Betty.

  5. Wait a minute! says:

    Betty is the most supportive trainer and friend any one wanting to have fun getting healthier can have. She’s a daily ray of sunshine, energy and positivity. So glad she’s my friend!