This post is sponsored by POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice. All opinions are my own.
So you made a New Year’s resolution to start exercising and get fit and perhaps things haven’t gone as planned. You’re not alone. That’s because many of us don’t take the necessary steps to match our goals to a realistic plan. Here are 3 critical steps you need to take to reach your fitness goals and make your workouts more efficient, effective and long lasting!
Make a Concrete Plan.
As Antoine de Saint Exupéry said, “A goal without a plan is just a wish.” You can’t just say “I want to lose 15 pounds” or “I want to start working out.” Making healthy decisions into a habit takes hard work and commitment. Once you establish your goal, you’ve got to create a concrete plan.
- When are you going to workout? Be specific. Are you going to workout Monday, Wednesday and Friday? What time? Once you’ve decided on days and times, mark them on your calendar. Tell your spouse or family that you will not be available at that time and ask them to honor it and keep you accountable.
- Where are you going to workout? At your local gym? At home? At a nearby track or park? Whatever you decide, put things in motion to make that happen. Buy a gym membership or sign up for a year of streaming workouts at Get Healthy U TV. Buy some dumbbells for your home gym or look up the group fitness class schedule at your gym.
- What workouts are you going to do? Decide how you’re going to exercise. You can go on a run, weight lift, play tennis or swim. There are so many options when it comes to building muscle and getting your heart rate up. And let me tell you a little secret… the best workout out there is the one you enjoy doing. If you make yourself run on a treadmill every day but hate every second of it, it’s only a matter of time until you give up. Find something you enjoy! I’ve found over the years that I love group fitness classes – the energy and the accountability I enough to keep pushing myself the whole way through. Find what works for you and you may even find yourself looking forward to your sweat sessions.
- Finally, if you know that you struggle with accountability, consider finding someone who will work out with you. A friend, a family member or a co-worker. Having someone else by your side makes the time pass more quickly, keeps you accountable and is more fun!
2. Fuel Your Workouts Properly.
If you’ve ever started working out and immediately feel light headed or sluggish or struggle to finish your workout due to fatigue or exhaustion, it may be because you’re not fueling properly. I am a big believer in that what you eat or drink pre- and post-workout can make a huge difference in your end result and your ability to stick with it in the long run. If you’re like me though, eating an entire meal pre-workout usually isn’t realistic and doesn’t sit well during the workout. So I’m always looking for easy-to-grab nutrition that appeals to me, that won’t fill me up too much and give my body what it needs.
This usually means eating a small piece of fruit, almond butter toast or eating a handful of nuts. More recently, I’ve been loving my POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice, since it’s a good source of potassium, which helps maintain healthy muscle function. Plus, it’s renowned for antioxidants (4x the antioxidants, on average, of green tea). And that’s why I love POM. One 16 oz. bottle has more potassium than two medium bananas and the juice of four whole-pressed pomegranates. Seriously, #crazyhealthy! I personally like to dilute mine in water and sip it before, during and after my workout. It’s a go-to pick me up for workouts without added sugar, fillers or preservatives.
3. Pace Yourself.
One of the biggest mistakes I see people make when starting a new fitness program is doing too much too soon. It’s not one giant step to get fit, in fact, it’s a series of baby steps. And if you overdo it, you’ll most certainly quit. Allow yourself to be a beginner. Everyone starts somewhere for goodness sake. I am always preaching, “you are never too late and never too old to begin taking care of your health”. But coming out of the gates at full speed and killing yourself for a week is not the key to long-term success. Give your muscles and your heart a chance to adapt to the new level of activity and let yourself progress. If you have decided that it’s time to be consistent with exercise (yay you!) then go for progress not perfection. Give yourself a few small wins in the beginning and soon enough your body will be capable of so much more!
Are you ready to go? Great! Click the link to start your journey with our FREE 10 minute workouts. 10 minutes is better than nothing and before you know it, 10 minutes will turn to 20 minutes!
Want to try POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice? Click here to learn more. (P.S. not only do I use it as a pre-workout drink, but I add it to smoothies, salad dressings and drizzle on my yogurt!). Yum!