Some people find keeping a New Year’s resolve so tough that there’s even a day on the calendar designated for those who fail: Jan. 17, also known as «Ditch New Year’s Resolution Day.»
But, before you give up hope and pitch your new gym clothes in the back of the closet, take a different approach to keep your healthy resolutions.
Exercising more is one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions, but it’s also one of the first to be abandoned.
«Start with small steps. «It doesn’t have to be super intense,» explains Mayo Clinic physical therapist Scott Haak, D.P.T. «All you have to do is be consistent and develop excellent habits.»
Finding an activity you enjoy is the first step in developing good habits. Set realistic expectations for what your body can tolerate and how long you can spend exercising, according to Haak. Then make the activity a part of your daily routine.
«It’s just a movement.» «It’s 20 to 30 minutes of walking every day,» Haak explains. «It’s all about biking.» Depending on their physical abilities, I’d recommend doing bodyweight workouts that don’t require a lot of equipment.
Accountability is also a part of an effective workout routine. That involves enlisting the help of a friend or family member to join you on your fitness quest.
«You have to tell someone you’re going to do it, or you have to bring a friend to the gym with you and have them work out with you, or you have to get a trainer,» Haak says.