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New Year health and fitness tips from the experts

If you haven’t already made a list of your New Year’s Resolutions for 2020, but you’re hoping for a ‘New Year, New You’ this January, now’s the time to start thinking about your goals. The key to actually achieving your New Year’s Resolutions is to set goals that are both transformative and realistic. We’ve pulled together the top health and fitness tips from the experts to help you set the right goals and kick the new year (and new you) off with a bang.

The key to any big change is to make small, incremental adjustments to your daily routine. When it comes to improving your health and fitness, this is especially true. Even though it is recommended that the average adult should be doing at least 150 minutes of exercise each week, experts suggest that adding incremental exercises to your day can increase your overall fitness and help you make headway towards your fitness goals.  Consistency is also key!

“When advising patients on exercise, doctors should encourage people to increase their level of activity by small amounts rather than focus on the recommended levels,” writes Phillip Sparling, a professor emeritus at the Georgia Institute of Technology’s School of Applied Physiology.

To start with, you can skip the lift and take the stairs on your way to work or park the car a couple of blocks further away and walk the rest of the way. Also try standing up and taking a walking break a few times each day, which will help clear your head, get your joints moving and help to avoid posture issues related with sitting all day.

Studies suggest that working out in the morning, even briefly, can help with appetite control, enhance your mood, and give you extra energy for the rest of the day. Elizabeth Narins, senior health and fitness editor at Cosmopolitan, says, “Even if you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, a morning workout will boost your endorphins for extra smiles the rest of the day.”

If you’re limited for time in the morning, adding some quick, repetitive exercises to your morning routine is still hugely beneficial. Try doing 5 repetitions of sit-ups, squats and lunges immediately after getting out of bed, and then each day, increase by 2 repetitions, for example.

Have you worked with multiple personal trainers only to hear the same old “do squats, run, get on the bike” fitness tips, over and over? Boring workouts make getting fit that much harder, as not only are you likely to lose interest and stop doing them, they’re also not put together with your specific goals and needs in mind. Integrated Health Specialist’s own accredited wellness coach and personal trainer, Todd van Namen, is an expert in creating personal training routines which are challenging, fun, and diverse.

“Personal training is about more than simply targeting muscle groups or overhauling diets. It’s about taking a unique approach to each person and creating a program for them which is fun, interesting, and offers a diverse range of activities,” says Todd. “A good coach can pinpoint what motivates and demotivates you and can help you to overcome the physical and mental barriers you’re facing.”

One of the biggest mistakes people make when it comes to setting New Year’s Resolutions related to health and fitness is overdoing it in the first few weeks.

“It is almost impossible to maintain an extreme switch, and you’ll be back to where you started before the first month is over,” says certified personal trainer, Kris Cueva from Burn 60 Studios. “When you overdo your workout schedules by either signing up for too many classes or struggling through a run when your body is actually exhausted, you chip away at your mental resolve.”

That’s why it’s so important to find a qualified personal trainer who can help you to develop a realistic and safe routine, which is both motivational and maintainable in the long term. Receiving health and fitness tips which are specific to you will help you to avoid injury, stop you from becoming burnt out, and help you stick to your fitness goals for the rest of the year.

Of course, no ‘New Year, New You’ health and fitness New Year’s Resolution would be complete without an adjustment to your diet. But this is often easier said than done. There are so many clever marketing traps lying in wait at your local supermarket (beware the ‘low fat’ label!) that it can be almost impossible to make smart choices when you’re shopping.

“Many marketing terms are associated with improved health,” says nutritionist Adda Bjarnadottir in a recent article for healthline.com. “These are often used to mislead consumers into thinking that unhealthy, processed food is good for them.”

Learning to read and understand nutritional labelling is incredibly important when it comes to overhauling the way you cook and eat at home. Luckily, you don’t need to navigate this minefield alone! Our Trolley Overhaul service is incredibly popular and makes grocery shopping more fun (and less stressful) than ever before. We help you to make better choices, understand labelling and sneaky marketing tricks, and give you some useful tools for making your regular grocery shop easier and healthier.

For your ‘New Year, New You’ goals in 2020, try out these top health and fitness tips from the experts and make 2020 your healthiest, fittest year yet!

To find a program that’s tailored to suit your goals this coming year, get in touch with us at Integrated Health Specialists.

Michelle van Namen
Author: Michelle van Namen