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>Back to Fitness: The 3 R’s

Category : Exercise

Did your fitness routine go freestyle this summer? The trouble with summer is that people tend to be inconsistent about exercising. This happens for a multitude of reasons: a) the kids are home; b) week-long vacations and travel; c) relying on outdoor activities like gardening and walking for exercise.

Now that September is here it is time to get back to fitness! How to start? ”Back to School” and “Back to Fitness” have a lot of similarities. Here are the “Three R’s”:

Regular Routine

Schedule your exercise. Consistency is the key to success. “I am going to get in shape this fall” is far too vague. Instead, say “I am going to exercise for 30 minutes three days a week for the next 4 weeks.” You should consider being even more specific and schedule the days you will exercise on your calendar. Notice how this statement is measureable in couple of ways (minutes of exercise & days per week) it also has a time frame of 4 weeks so when you have successfully exercised through out the month of September you can reward yourself. Then you can set a new goal (maybe 4 days/week) for the month of October!

‘Rite it down
There are two things to write down:

1) Write your goals. Post them somewhere you can see them regularly and act upon them. It is important to review your goals daily…for one minute. Spencer Johnson, M.D., in his book The One Minute Mother gives us this motivational quote: “I take a minute, I look at my goals, I look at my behavior, I see if my behavior matches my goals”.
2) Record your workouts. It may seem silly, but most grown-ups are just as motivated as grade-schoolers by something as simple as a chart on the wall with gold stars. Try this at home: Place a calendar which is dedicated to keeping track of your workouts in a prominent location such as your refrigerator. Everyday you workout give yourself a star on the calendar. You may also want to record your time, distance and/or the activities you completed.

A lot of us are motivated by the numbers.

Most people feel they MUST weigh themselves, however don’t measure success by that number alone. Here are some other numbers to consider:

 Body composition (the ratio of fat to lean body tissue) is much more important. This can be measured with a skin fold calipers by a fitness professional.

 Keep track of inches lost with a tape measure. Record your girth measurements around your waist, hips, and upper leg. Measure them again in one month. The tricky part is measuring the same spot the next time, so take good notes. For example, when you measure your waist pay attention: did you measure across your belly button or two inches above your belly button?

 How many push-ups you can do without stopping, how many chair squats you can complete in 30 seconds and how long it takes you to walk/run a specific distance such as one mile (works best on a track)? Re-test every eight to twelve weeks and you will be impressed with yourself!

 How many minutes and/or miles you complete weekly or monthly?

Turn over a new leaf this Fall…follow the “Three R’s” and get fit this fall. Remember, consistency is the key to success! If you have a health & fitness question or need help with your fall fitness routine contact me:

Karin Jennings is a certified personal trainer and co-owner of XO Fitness, LLC in De Pere.