HEALTHY LIVING: Developing a sustainable New Year’s fitness resolution

HEALTHY LIVING: Developing a sustainable New Year’s fitness resolution

With the new year approaching, there is an influx of people at local gyms looking to improve their physical fitness levels.

You don’t necessarily need a gym membership to ensure you’ll reach your fitness goals in 2019. What’s most important when developing any routine that requires consistency is ensuring it is something that you can stick to. It’s better to commit to a twice a week workout than a rigorous four times a week workout. It’ll be easier to maintain as your inspiration from the new year dwindles and other obligations pile up.

While it’s great to set goals, sometimes being too ambitious can hinder our success if we find that we are not able to meet our initial expectations. To avoid getting discouraged, start small, but get specific.

It’s important to fuel your body with a well-balanced diet, especially when beginning a training routine. It’s widely known that you cannot out-work a poor diet. If you’re unsure of where to start this new year, make nutrition a priority. Diet and exercise work hand in hand.

If you’re planning on joining a gym, remember to ask the staff for an equipment orientation. It helps to identify activities that you already enjoy and utilize them to work towards your fitness goals. For example, if you enjoy being in the water, you can swim laps as cardio.

Make sure that you incorporate some type of regular resistance training into you routine. The more lean muscle mass that you have, the more efficient your body is at burning fat.

There are many ways to get in a good workout at home, with no equipment required. Bodyweight exercises are an excellent way to increase strength and build lean muscle mass.

You can get creative by using stairs for standing calf raises, a chair for perfecting your squat form, and a comfy rug to do core movements on.

A simple full body workout circuit that you can do from the comfort of your own home would be:

■ Four sets of 20 standing calf raises.■ Four sets of 20 air squats (jump squats as a progression or chair squats as a regression).■ Three sets of 15 push ups.■ Three sets of 15 tricep dips.■ Two sets of 25 standard crunches.■ Two sets of 25 bicycle crunches.

A circuit style workout requires you to repeat the listed movements one after another with minimal rest in between sets.

No matter how you choose to reach your fitness goals this coming year, make sure to include your loved ones in your pursuits.

Not only will the emotional support make working out and meal planning more enjoyable, but having others to remind you of where you started and how far you’ve come throughout the year will help keep you on track.

There is no substitute for accountability.

Kristen Dearborn is a Wallingford resident,  NASM certified personal trainer and author of the blog dearfitkris –