Quick workouts, realistic expectations, and weekly planning will help you keep those resolutions going beyond the”Honeymoon Period.”
In the fitness world, the “Honeymoon Period” refers to the 6 week time period between New Years Day when resolutions are made and Valentines Day.
Similar to that blissful period of the “honeymoon” in a marriage, in committing to a healthy lifestyle, there is typically a great deal of energy and enthusiasm in the beginning. The gyms are bustling, and we are diligently trying to eat right. So what happens? According to numerous studies – by Valentines Day, many people have fallen back into old habits, and the enthusiasm dies down.
The good news is – it only takes about *4 – 6 weeks for something to become a habit, and probably less time for us to integrate something so totally into our daily lives that we are no longer aware of it.
So how can you make your fitness commitments last beyond the “Honeymoon Period?” Below are 3 Simple Guidelines for Health & Fitness Success:
1. Keep Your Expectations Real: While it would be nice, there are no magic pills or exercises that will whip us into shape overnight. Engaging in daily exercise however, is one of the best ways to insure you are doing your part to keep your body healthy and fit.
The problem is, time, or the lack of – it can often prevent people from keeping their resolutions to exercise more often. When you find yourself short on time to workout check out workout videos online like:
The California Living Beach Body Workout Video included in this post is a 20-Minute Total Body Workout utilizing Circuit Training.
The Party Girl Diet’s Toned -By-Tonight Workout is a great exercise routine when you are short on time and want your muscles to look more toned and defined for a big night out.
Be Realistic – aim to loose 1-2 pounds a week. You may experience more weight loss early on – which is natural – yet the healthiest weight loss plans will not shock your body into shedding large amounts of weight in an (unhealthy) short amount of time.
The secret is balance. Your fitness goals are just one part of your life – and should not consume your every waking moment – nothing should – that would be a terribly unbalanced and unhealthy way to live.
Most of us have jobs, families, and many other daily commitments beyond working out. Sure there are celebrities who lose lots of weight or “get buff” for their next film who work at it for hours on end – but for most of us, exercising for an hour or so a day is a healthy and realistic goal!
Be patient, your results will come…in time. By understanding this, and keeping things in perspective, you will be able to work towards your goals over a longer period of time.
2. Set up a Goal and Reward System: It is important to have goals like: “I want to be in a bikini this summer,” or I want to run a 5K or 10K this spring.”
By setting up intermittent goals along the way and rewarding yourself for reaching these goals you will keep your enthusiasm high and have mini-milestones to look forward to achieving. For example, going 30 days without eating junk food, or going down a size in your jeans are reasons to celebrate!
Set up non-food related rewards such as a day at the spa, a shopping spree, or a movie night out with your friends (hold the butter & salt please!), which will make you feel good about your progress along the way, and keep your “eye on the prize.”
3. Do Some Form of Exercise Everyday. What happens when we say to ourselves “I’ll get to it right after I do this, or, I’ll do it tomorrow” is that the “it” usually never happens because we did not consciously plan it into our daily or weekly routine.
Create a schedule that works for you. Planning to exercise three days a week, every other day, or 30 – 60 minutes everyday, etc., will help to establish exercise as an important part of your life.
Do what you love. If you enjoy hiking, biking, rowing, walking, get out there and do it! I know it’s easy to say and harder to do, but seriously, try scheduling an activity you love once a week and see how great you feel afterwards.
While the winter weather presents some challenges you can swim indoors, shoot hoops, or even play a game of tennis indoors – in California anyway!
You can also work with a trainer and create a kick-butt workout at your local gym and combine it with a fun spin or dance class to keep it interesting.
Try adding kick boxing, yoga, or Pilate’s to your routine – you’ll challenge your mind and body in different ways and meet new people who share similar interests – a great fringe benefit!
All the best in keeping those resolutions alive…and keeping the “Honeymoon Going!” Aprilanne
Aprilanne Hurley SFN is a Certified Specialist in Fitness Nutrition, author ofThe Party Girl Diet, and the Health Expert for California Living, The Bay Area’s original lifestyle show featuring California’s trends in food, travel, and healthy living.
Hurley’s Party Girl Diet book available on Amazon is a healthy, sustainable lifestyle plan combining today’s groundbreaking health and nutrition research with Hurley’s penchant for good living to deliver a revolutionary new diet and lifestyle that lets you “Keep the Party Going…While You Lose the Weight!”
Content provided is for educational and informational purposes. It is not intended to cure, treat, or diagnose any disease or illness. Please consult with your health care provider prior to starting any new diet or exercise program.