We’ve been talking a lot about fitness this month, for obvious reasons. January is the time when those of us who have fallen off the fitness wagon in the past year (or who may have never been on it the first place) try to get our acts together and get back in shape. But, the reason that so many New Year’s workout resolutions are unsuccessful is because that sh*t ain’t easy. (For those of you who have regular workout routines, we envy you…what are your secrets?)
To give us all a little extra help getting our rears into gear, we talked to personal trainer Bruce Gorman, about his tips are for staying fit in the new year, and how to get motivated to workout even when you feel like never leaving your couch again, ever.
1. “It’s important to have the right gear if you’re trying to kick start your workout.”
If you saw Monday’s post with our favorite workout gear, then you’re already all set! There’s no point in trying to get in shape with old run-down sneakers that don’t offer you any support. Purchasing the right equipment not only motivates you, but can also help so you don’t get injured.
2. “Don’t overdo it, find a workout that’s right for you.”
If getting a trainer isn’t in your budget, make sure you are looking into what kind of workouts are realistic for you. You don’t want to start off running a treadmill 10k on your first day back at the gym. It’ll just burn you out, and make you never want to go back.
3. “Set realistic goals for yourself.”
Start off slow and build up from there. Slowly increase your intensity, so that you can build muscle without too much strain. Gorman tells us to start off working out two or three times a week and to include at least 30 minutes of cardio like walking, jogging, or cycling, combined with 30 minutes of strength training with hand weights or weight machines. He also stresses the importance of stretching before and after your workout.
4. “Stay motivated by having a friend or spouse to workout with.”
It’s easy to lose interest in working out, especially when you’re doing it alone. Having a workout buddy is known to help people stay encouraged. If you’re the type that loves a little competition, see how many days in a row you can go with sticking to your routine (a little healthy friend competition can’t hurt!)
5. “Don’t forget to switch up your routine by trying a new class or a new workout machine.”
Gorman stresses how important it is not to get bored of your routine. Shake things up by taking a yoga or boxing class. New classes can be beneficial by working out muscles that you don’t usually use.
6. “Don’t forget your diet! Eating is a big part of getting fit.”
Make sure you follow up your workout with healthy eating. With all that exercise make sure you’re getting enough protein (most women need between 50 and 60 grams a day). Gorman tells us to follow the 80/20 rule by eating balanced, healthy meals 80 percent of the time and treat yourself about 20 percent. The best way to do this is by starting out with a healthy breakfast so that you’re more likely to eat healthy throughout the day. An egg-white omelet with fresh peppers and onions, is a great option. For all you vegans out there, try a soy yogurt smoothie with fresh berries and a tablespoon of almond butter.
7. “Don’t forget to get enough rest.”
Recovery is one of the most important parts of working out. Give your muscles time to recover after your workouts and make sure you’re getting enough sleep at night. Gorman also stresses the importance of days off. Unless you’re training for a marathon, you shouldn’t be working out every single day, your body needs time to rejuvenate, especially after a tough workout.
8. “Stay hydrated.”
Even though it may seem obvious, Gorman says that most people he trains forget to hydrate regularly. You should be drinking six to eight, eight ounce glasses of water a day to flush out waste and to keep your body running efficiently.
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