About new year resolutions, there’s bad news, and then there’s good news.
First the bad news: Most of them fail.
Now the good news: People over 50 have more life experience and tools to succeed at them. You’re more realistic, focused and balanced – in life and in reaching a goal, which is really all a resolution is, anyway – a goal.
As fitness experts, we know that plenty of people start each year wanting to get in shape. So, they join a gym or studio like ours full of determination to stick with it, to lose the weight, to eat better, etc. And that’s great. We want everyone to gain the benefits of exercise. But not as many of them incorporate fitness habits into their lifestyle for the long term.
Some people don’t like to think about resolutions, and we can see why. We’re here to help. And we look forward to talking and answering any questions you have. Here are a few ideas to get you thinking on track.
1. Embrace Your Hard-Earned Wisdom. Nobody knows you better than you, especially at this point in life. You’ve set and reached many goals before, and you’ve learned the difference between wanting to do something and feeling like you should do something. You know which kind of exercise you like, what time of day works for you, etc.
2. Forget Anyone Else’s Expectations. Along those lines, shake loose society’s standards about what your body is “supposed” to look like at this age or that. If for no other reason, move your body because it makes you feel good. The rest will follow.
3. Slow Your Roll. People in their 20s and 30s tend to overcommit too quickly, take on too much, and then get frustrated when they can’t meet the self-imposed pressure. By now, you’ve probably learned the value of starting with one specific goal. It can be as simple as walking around the neighborhood three times a week. Or joining one of our fitness classes for a certain number of sessions per week.
4. Revel in Your Freedom. People over 50 tend to have fewer children at home, so there’s less pressure to rush back to the daily grind after the holiday break. And people who are retired get even more freedom from the onslaught of job stress after the period of holiday bliss.
5. Remember What You Want – Specifically. Get specific. (“I want to play ball with Timmy this spring”… “I want to feel stronger on the golf course” … “I want to look good when I walk my granddaughter down the aisle.”). Remember this goal whenever you’re frustrated or need motivation.
6. Count Your Blessings. Exercise is a celebration of what we can do – not punishment for other actions. It’s a chance to show how much you want to be here and happy for as long as possible. Try it: Gratitude is a much better motivator than complaining or channel-surfing.
7. Put Movement Into Your Routine. Park at the far end of the lot. Take the stairs. Take the dog for a walk. Dance while you clean house.
8. Grab a Buddy. Whether it’s with a friend, co-worker or spouse, you’re more likely to succeed if you have someone with you. And if you don’t have someone to join you, come in anyway and make new workout friends. The social component is one of the countless blessings of being a member here.
9. Avoid the Label. Don’t think of it as a “New Year’s Resolution.” That’s too much pressure! You’re just moving that body, every day, one day at a time.
Remember, we’re here for you!