Often times when we write out our New Year’s resolutions or goals for the year, we come up with a list of do’s and don’ts. We set our expectations high while failing to set ourselves up with a plan to succeed. What if instead of saying I won’t or I don’t this year, you set yourself up for success by focusing on what you are doing and watched the good grow?
Here are my top picks for watching the good grow in 2016.
1. Add Greens
One of the best ways to improve health and fitness is to start with the gut. By adding green shakes to your morning routine, you help to make your body alkaline and support healthy hormone production. By drinking greens you also reduce cravings throughout the day due to your fibre intake. When our bodies are more balanced we are able to push harder in our workouts and keep a clear head when sugar is calling our name. You can make your greens at home or buy them in a powder form. My favourite is Genuine Health’s Fermented Whole Body Nutrition with greens+. It’s packed full of nutrition and is super easy to make. Go with the acai mango flavour!
2. Add time
One of the most common questions I get asked when clients are signing up for a program at Dailyroutinefitness.com is how much time will the workouts take?
I have kids, a job, a husband etc…This year instead of stressing over the amount of time you have for that workout, start thinking less is more. If you’re looking to get in shape and are pressed for time, hang up your marathon running shoes and set your timer for 20 minutes. A HIIT (High-Intensity-Interval-Training) burns 20% more calories and fat than your standard slower pace 60 minute workouts. In a HIIT workout you are pushing yourself as hard as you can with short breaks. If you’re looking to build some serious quads this winter you may need to stay on the squat rack a bit longer than 20 minutes.
3. Add Rest Days
One of the most common mistakes we make when getting started on a new fitness program is skipping our rest days. We tend to go as hard as we can until we get burnt out and end up sitting on the couch for days eating all the snacks we’ve been avoiding. When we take our rest days it allows the body to heal, hormones to balance, and lean muscle to rebuild itself. When we put stress on our muscles we cause them to break down; when we rest we allow the muscle to rebuild itself, causing a layering effect of lean muscle which in turn burns off unwanted fat. Set up your workout schedule to allow 1-2 days of rest for those muscles. You can also incorporate active rest here with a relaxing hike, a swim in the lake, or chasing after your kids.
4. Add fun back into fitness
Oftentimes we get caught up in the excitement of our friends’ new health journeys or the newest fitness craze. We find ourselves dying in hot yoga, training for a marathon, or wanting to throw up in bootcamp, thinking why the heck am I doing this??!! Does change also come with discomfort? Yes, most times it does, but when it comes to fitness I highly recommend a love-hate relationship. Find something that challenges you but also makes you want to come back for more. Check out local studios that offer a large variety of classes and try them all! You may find that you were once a dancer but you now love that insane bootcamp, or that runner in you needs a little more zen time on your yoga mat. Add more variety, experience, and find what will keep you coming back for more.
This year instead of thinking about changing your whole life, just think about adding additional good things. One at a time. This year just let your pile of good things grow.
This year I’m committed to making fitness happen wherever and however!
Warm up for 10 minutes. Set your timer and do each exercise for one minute. Repeat the movement on both sides when applicable. Repeat the circuit three or four times.
Set feet hip-width apart, core tight, and arms straight up next to the ears. Lower the body to 90 degrees. Actively squeeze your glutes as you return to standing.
Start with legs hip-width apart. Take a large step forward keeping your front knee behind the toe and your back knee bent right above the floor. Twist your upper body to one side, arms straight out, and then return to starting position.
Take a wide stance with your legs. As you’re squatting keep your back up straight, core tight, and arms raised to be in line with the shoulders. Allow the knees to open up and press back as you squat. Return to starting position. To offer a more challenging approach, come onto the balls of your feet and raise your heels.
Take your hands wide, wrists slightly wider than shoulders. Lower your chest to the wall and press back to starting position.
Press your upper and lower back against the wall as you bring your body to a 90 degrees seated position. Place all the weight in your heels and hold your squat 30-90 seconds depending on your level of fitness.
Set yourself up with hands under shoulders and a slight bend in your elbows to protect the joint. Roll your shoulders away from your ears and either place your knees on the ground or come on your toes for more of a challenge. If you are still feeling like you need more of a challenge, raise one leg off the ground.
Rachel Doell is an instructor, personal trainer, mother, and wife who loves health and fitness. Her fitness company, Daily Routine Fitness, (dailyroutinefitness.com) features simple ways to fit living a healthy life into your everyday routine.Follow Daily Routine Fitnessto stay motivated all year long.
Photos by Rebecca Siewert