New Year’s Fitness Resolutions
As the fog clears from the holiday’s and people check the holiday weight gain, most people resort to building a lengthy list of New Year’s Fitness Resolutions. Somewhere on the list is new exercise goals and diet fads to try. Exercising more, watching what is being consumed, and improving overall health goals can be a great thing. The problem is when these changes are being forced to occur January 1st in the hopes to sustain these changes for an extended period of time. Going from a sedentary lifestyle to an active lifestyle overnight can be a very dangerous action if not done correctly.
While a common misconception is that more injuries are due to age related conditions. The reality is, that’s not true. A majority of these injuries are caused from the demand being placed on the body. A rapid increase in physical activity and a new stress being placed on the body, leads to a physiological response. It is important to be aware of this to avoid overuse injuries and to stay the course on your new fitness journey.
Here are my 6 Tips to Achieve Success of your New Year’s Fitness Resolutions:
Go spend $50-$75 on a new pair of trainers. Do not plan on going to the gym wearing the worn down pair of shoes that you wear for all other activities. Having the proper support on your feet can help reduce the stress placed on the ankles, knees, and hips. This is especially true if you plan to do cardio or high intensity interval training.
“No Pain No Gain” is not always a good rule of thumb to follow! If you will be performing new exercises take the time to focus on form before adding weight to an exercise you are uncomfortable performing. Study YouTube videos or ask a trainer at your local gym for some advice. Pushing yourself through pain caused by improper technique can put a damper on your resolutions if it results in an injury.
Build a Routine
If you are not attending sessions with a trainer or a class lead by a trained fitness instructor, do your homework and build a well-rounded workout routine. Making sure that you are not working the same muscle groups every time you get a workout in is key to avoid overuse injuries. There are too many different ways to structure your workouts to share in this post, so feel free to reach out with any questions you might have.
Get a warm-up in! Don’t walk into the gym and go straight for the bench press without spending time warming up. In addition to warming up, focus on mobility exercises. These include using a foam roller, exercise bands, tennis balls. Those will help with myofascial release which promotes proper range of motion of the joints you will be using during your routine that day.
You can look at some mobility and posture drills on our YouTube channel. One exercise will be uploaded each week, so don’t forget to check back every once in a while.
Taking a day off isn’t going to cost you, in fact it could benefit you! Taking the proper amount of time to recover from your workouts will greatly reduce the chances of an overuse injury from occurring. The other key factor is SLEEP! Everyone should focus on getting 7-8 hours of sleep nightly to help reduce the stressors being placed on the body.
Set Realistic Goals
I love to dream big, but then you must break that dream down into achievable action steps. You can’t expect to lift the weight you once could years ago. You can’t go from the couch to running a marathon overnight. But if you have that goal in mind, set achievable monthly or quarterly goals with an action plan in place. You will be setting yourself up for a better chance of success.
Well there it is, my 6 Tips to Achieve Success of your New Year’s Fitness Resolutions. Some minor aches and pains can be expected if you have been sedentary, but knowing what to do when those aches and pains flair up is the most crucial step.
Happy New Year and I hope everyone starts off 2018 on the right foot. Always know the staff at Donahue Chiropractic is ready to assist you and your health goals anyway we can.