Setting Goals For The Coming Year

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New Years Resolutions.

Yeah, most of the time that’s a big joke. How many times have you made a resolution then 2 days later gave up?  I have done that too many times to count.

So, let’s not call them resolutions anymore. Call them what they are: Goals!

Let me start by telling you what some of my goals are for the coming year (at least in the health and fitness area of my life).  Last January I joined Golds Gym and a month later hired a personal trainer. Now, I have to tell you – if you can afford to go that route, take it. There’s nothing like having an expert both train and motivate you. I learned a LOT from her when it comes to exercising. Cardio, plyometrics, body weight training, core and balance training, and more.  Since I have started, I have lost about 20 pounds and I have gained strength, balance, stamina and a joy for exercising and feeling good. Because let me tell you – I have never felt physically better in all my life. Even with arthritic knees 🙂

But finances being what they are, I will be stopping the personal trainer in a month. Just can not afford $500 per month indefinitely. And I can not justify having someone continuously train me when I have learned more than enough to train myself – which is my goal for the next year.

There’s a bit of space in my home office. It’s empty and crying out to be used.  So my plan is to lay some high quality floor mats in that area, buy a few pieces of equipment and make my own little workout area. I can do all this for about $300 – $400 depending on how much the floor mats costs and how much I buy. But once complete, there are no monthly costs.  I also recommend a good home workout video or program that you can follow along to. I bought a fitness product last month that focuses on body weight training (which trust me – unless you are looking to be a body builder, your own body weight and a few items is all you need).  The product I bought is called Body Weight Burn.  Although I have not gone through everything yet, what I have gone through I absolutely love.  The program is very simple and very effective.  I have printed out their workout schedules and hung them on my wall for easy access 🙂

So there’s one goal – my home workout area.  I have another also… eating better. In the almost year I have been with my trainer, I have lost weight and gained muscle, strength, etc. but I still do not have my six pack. Meaning I still have issues with some belly fat, though not nearly as much as a year ago.

What I learned is that exercise, while important, is only half the answer. You need to eat better. I have fallen short here.  I am not really such a BAD eater. I eat veggies, reduced my beef intake significantly, buy more organic and raw foods than I used to. But I still eat too much. My portion size needs to come down, and I also need to stop the snacking that I do. If I didn’t exercise several times per week I would be close to 250 pounds by now 🙂

So for the coming year, my goal is smaller portions and cutting the snacks. Food is always a tough one to change or control. We have a love affair with food. I love to cook, have dinner parties, holiday feasts, etc. There’s nothing wrong with that provided you do so in moderation. So moderation is the new watch word for me.

I see more vegetables in my future. Perhaps some good protein shakes, and I will dust off my juicer and put it to use once again. The Body Weight Burn has a section containing meal plans and recipes for healthy eating (although this may be in the upsell, which is also reasonably priced). I will study these meal plans and recipes and begin my journey into healthier eating.

My final 2 goals for the coming year…

1) This may sound vain, but I plan on obtaining my “six pack”, if for no other reason than to see if I can. Never had one, but it’s a goal to shoot for.

2) Get closer to marathon distance in my runs. I don’t know how realistic this is, but I think it’s a worthy goal for me.

Some final thoughts for you. I know the thought of exercising turns many people off. It did for me for many years. But I can almost guarantee that if you just start and allow enough time for it to become a habit, it WILL become enjoyable for you.  Finding the right kind of program is important as well. For example, knowing that my personal trainer days are coming to an end, I found what so far I find to be an excellent replacement – kickboxing! It is quite a workout but also quite a stress reliever and very enjoyable. It’s much more affordable too (Trainer – $500/month and kickboxing – $84/month).

Now that my fitness program is firmly set in my lifestyle, I find that when I miss a day of my workout, I am disappointed and look forward to my next one.  It’s no longer “Ugh – time to exercise” for me. Now it’s “Exercise time!” and come back feeling great.

I know you can do it. Please share your stories with us – we’d love to hear them.

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