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Raise your hand if you kicked off the year by committing to get in shape or lose weightâ€¦ Now, keep it up if youâ€™re still sticking with it. Statistics show that more than half of those who make New Yearâ€™s resolutions have abandoned them by June, but here are a few tips and tricks from fitness and nutrition pros to help you keep your healthy momentum going.
Make the commitment to yourself.
â€œSelf-careâ€ is trending for 2018â€”and this includes fitness. In addition to the calorie-burning and muscle-strengthening, you get from regular exercise, the post-workout release of endorphins benefits your mood as well. If finding time to get to the gym is a challenge, Seattle-based Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, MS,Â RDN,Â CSOÂ andÂ ArivaleÂ coach, GingerÂ Hultin, has a suggestion: â€œSchedule fitness such as gym time, classes or even walks on your calendar like you would any other meeting or event.â€
Try the buddy system.
A workout partner can help you get to the gymâ€”and help you work harder once youâ€™re there. According to Hultin, â€œStudies show thatÂ choosing a workout partner who you perceive to be a better performer than you could increase your workout time and intensity by as much as 200 percent.â€
Start and end your workout right.
Donâ€™t underestimate the importance of warming up, cooling down and stretching. â€œDynamic movements, also called movement preparation, increase circulation, elevate muscle temperature, kick your energy sources into high gear and prepare the body for physical activity,â€ explains Hultin. â€œCool-down movements help bring elevated heart rate and muscle expenditure back to normal, and stretching helps reduce risk of injury and keep you in optimal alignment.â€
Monitor your activity.
Extra motivation can be as close as your wrist, and a fitness tracker like an Apple Watch or FitBit can help you set and achieve your goals. â€œTodayâ€™s trackers not onlyÂ count your steps,Â monitor your heart and measure your quality of sleep, but they also remind you toÂ move when youâ€™ve been inactive. They also come inÂ sleek, fashionable designs so youÂ can wear them beyond the gym and into a night out, in case you want toÂ count how many steps wereÂ completed dancing to â€œDespacitoâ€ with your girlfriends,” says Janet Jones, creator ofÂ Vixen Workout.
Give group classes a try.
Boredom is one of the top reasons women and men abandon their fitness routines, but group classes are a great way to keep things interesting. There are so many types to try youâ€™re bound to find one you love, and youâ€™re less likely to be intimidated when trying something new. Jones explains, â€œEven if you show up to a class not knowing anyone, chances are that someone will show you the ropes and encourage you along the way. Plus, you have the energy of the others