January is the typical month to reevaluate your exercise routine. Everyone is doing it this time of year. Especially if the inches or pounds have encroached upon your frame, we generally take this time to revisit our plan to see if there are some things that need to be revised for the upcoming year. Here are 8 suggestions to think about as you seek to get fit this January:
1. Stay hydrated before meals. One of the best ways to get fit is to make sure that you maintaining optimal hydration. It is important during exercise, of course, but it is equally so throughout the normal course of the day. Water is essential to your body to make sure your metabolism and digestive system is running at optimal levels. Like gas is necessary to make a car run efficiently, water is the fuel that is necessary for all the cells of your body to do their jobs well. Drinking eight, 8 oz. glasses of water daily is suggested, but make it a habit to drink one of those glasses before each meal. Our bodies have a hard time making a distinction between hunger and thirst. Having a nice, cold glass of water can make you feel fuller before a meal so it’s easier to avoid overeating.
What is dehydration and how to avoid it
2. Don’t skip breakfast. Make sure to meal prep something for busy weekday mornings so you have no excuses for being famished and grabbing something, shall we say, less than advantageous, on the way to work. If you are hungry in the morning, EAT! If you are running out the door, at least have a glass of water (see previous suggestion). If you prefer not to sit down to the good breakfast that you have prepped at home, bring it with you to have once you get to work. This will keep you satisfied and alert as you start your day.
3. Find a Trainer. If you have never invested in having a trainer to help you put together a fitness plan, January 2018 may be the time to give this a try. You might be able to find some holiday special to experiment with this time of year-just another way to take advantage of this resolution-making season. This might be someone that you want with you every step of the way. Or maybe you just need someone that you can engage to help you get together an initial plan and you take it from there. There are plans to fit every financial situation. It just takes some fortitude to go looking for the deal that will best fit you and your lifestyle. This is a wise investment to get the most time-saving benefit on the road to a fitter YOU.
4. Grab a friend. Making plans that you will be more apt to stick to, is always easier if you have a partner to keep you on track. There is no way to overemphasize the benefits of having a friend along to motivate, encourage, and hold you accountable. Plus, let’s be honest, it definitely makes it more fun!
5. Purchase a foam roller. Or if money isn’t an issue for you, get a regular massage. Either way, your body will thank you to spend some time on myofascial release after a good, hard workout. How will this help? Either a few good rolls with a foam roller (hyperlink to MPOF article on foam rolling) or massage helps to speed recovery from any aches or pains and ease muscle soreness. You will more likely look forward to your next exercise session if you indulge yourself to recover with foam rolling and/or a session with a trained masseuse.
Foam Roller Exercises
6. Strengthen your core. What is the benefit of a tightened core? Your core muscles are the muscles around your abdomen, pelvis, and lower back. It is necessary for all sports and exercise to have strong core muscles to help with flexibility, balance, and should be a vital part of any exercise program. One of the easiest core exercises is “The Plank” (hyperlink to how to do a plank correctly). It does not require any special equipment and can even be done in front of the television.
7. Make good use of downtime. These days, most of us have more things that are pulling at our time than ever. Finding time to fit in a well-organized fitness program at times seems almost impossible. Look for those extra minutes to just keep moving if you haven’t been able to fit your normal routine in. Just don’t give up! Or maybe you have had several workouts this week and it is time for a rest day. Instead, use your downtime to do some foam rolling. Little minutes add up!
8. Dance for 15 minutes. During the winter months, especially if you live in the snow regions, there can be lots of indoor time. For some of us, there tend to be lots of family time; time spent watching movies or just being together. This is a good thing! This is also a great time to put on some good music and have a little dance party. Children love this too and they never seem to run out of energy! But children or partners are not required. This can be done any ol’ time. Just keep moving and those calories will burn!
How are you keeping fit this January? We would love to hear about it. The options are limitless.