Guest article by Mista Martel, a local actor, writer, producer, entrepreneur and fitness enthusiast.

Health and fitness are two of the most common New Year’s goals. But these days, life moves at a very fast speed, and best laid plans are quickly left behind.

The rush of modern life has already given rise to many factors which are taking a toll on our health and affecting our fitness, including the demands of work, the lure of “streaming” entertainment, and the constant barrage of conflicting information on nutrition.

Diseases such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, arthritis, and thyroid dysfunction are easily getting into our lives, shortening lifespans and deteriorating quality of life.

Mista Martel - actor
Mista Martel is a local actor, writer, producer, entrepreneur and fitness enthusiast. Photo courtesy Mista Martel.

Certain bad habits such as drinking excessive alcohol and smoking have become newly re-popularized through social media and fads. Meanwhile, junk food habits and sedentary lifestyles continue to be obstacles to meeting our goals. These factors have simply taken us a distance away from achieving physical fitness.

However, many Middle Georgians are returning to their fitness goals. It’s a very good thing that people have now started to become aware of the negative impact of all of these habits and that they are also trying to control them. Gathering ideas can help you plan better and stick to your goals.

Fitness Tips to Follow in 2018:

1) You must be very specific with the goals of your fitness. It is not just about setting a general goal that “I want to get fit this year.” Instead, set specific goals for your weight, your physique, or your physical performance. For instance, a performance goal might be “I want to run a 5K race each month,” or “I want to hit my 10,000 step goal five days a week.”

As another example, you may aim at shedding 2 inches off your waistline through your everyday work-outs. If you set 2 inches as your target, then you will know exactly what you are needed to shed and that will give you an impetus to your efforts.

Once you make your specific goals, write them down and track your progress, including where you start on your fitness journey. When you reach one attainable goal, set a new one. But you must make sure that you fix fitness goals that are realistic for yourself because goals that are unrealistic will only shatter your confidence.

2) You can chalk out a routine and adopt a fitness workout plan. You will get the most benefit if you use the assistance of a personal fitness trainer while doing this. This is one of the most important fitness tips because your chances of succeeding very well in meeting your fitness goal normally increases tenfold if you can follow a structured fitness plan or routine. Fitness plans that are customizable are also available online, but it’s important that once you have your plan in place, you perform the necessary movements properly so that you maximize the benefits of your efforts and avoid injuring yourself. A knowledgeable fitness trainer can assist you in accomplishing both proper and safe performance of your workouts.

3) There is a big tendency among those new to fitness to over-train themselves. Enthusiasm for fitness is great, and motivation helps you achieve your goals. But the fact remains that this is the wrong approach because if you train too hard and too fast, you may easily lose interest in the workout or might even hurt yourself. The main rule here is to simply increase the timings of the fitness training bit by bit and not all at once. Exercise shouldn’t be torture (although it should be challenging!).

This is yet another important fitness tip, and it is another area where the help of a professional fitness trainer can be beneficial.

4) You will have to choose your own fitness role-models. Always read about them and then draw the right inspiration from their journey. If possible, just put up their pictures on the very walls of your exercise room. Your fitness role model can be a constant source of motivation and a mental boost for you on days when life is moving too fast and you lose sight of your goals.

5) Nutrition affects your physical fitness to a great extent, so you must eat a diet that is nutritionally balanced to help support your body in reaching your fitness goals. There is much debate over what a “balanced” diet looks like these days, but it’s important that you nourish your body with real food in adequate (but not excessive) portions to fuel your fitness activities. Working with a doctor or a nutritional counselor to develop a meal plan can be beneficial. There are also many online resources available. As with your fitness goals and exercise plans, writing down your dietary goals and meal planning go a long way in helping you be successful.

To achieve your physical fitness goals, make your goals reasonable, specific, and incremental. Write them down, and track your progress. Develop an exercise plan and a meal plan, write them down, and stick with them. Finally, find role models who can inspire you in your fitness journey. No matter what your personal fitness goals are, following these tips will help you achieve them in 2018.



Published by Guest Columnist

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