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01.18 Get Moving: New Year, New You?

January 3, 2018
By Renee Jeffreys Heil, PhD , Fort Myers Beach Bulletin, Fort Myers Beach Observer

How many of us have used the New Year as time to make New Year Resolutions only to find that a month later you have failed? Ever wonder why that happens? It's not because you lack will power or are lazy. It's often because you haven't created S.M.A.R.T. goals. If your New Year goals are to get in shape, you are setting yourself up for failure. How are you defining being "in shape"? How are you going to achieve that? You need to create goals that are: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Time bound. So what does that really mean?

If your goals is to improve your fitness it might look something like this.

I am going to make it to Bay Oaks Rec Center three times a week, every week in January; while I am there I am going to take a group fitness class one day (Yoga, Boot Camp, Zumba) and spend 30 minutes on a piece of cardio equipment on the other two days.

Article Photos

photo by Jennifer Moosburg

Another example: I am going to use my activity monitor to track my activity and get to 10,000 steps. This one is a little different.You start with seeing how much you walk/move each day for a week. We call this your baseline level.Then you aim to increase that by 10 percent a week, by adding a walk or increasing your distance. Goals like these are really great for improving your health, keep in mind, this may not be enough activity to decrease your waistline- so don't be discouraged.

Big mistakes in setting New Year's goals is that they are not Attainable or Specific. If you are not active, going to the gym every day is just going to make you sore, and cause you to want to quit. If they are not Specific (setting a number of days per week), you will never get the satisfaction of seeing them achieved.

Here is the other thing about goals. It may take a while to make the changes you need to see the results you want. This is especially true if your goal is weight loss. So don't get discouraged.

There are many places on the island to get help in achieving your goals. Bay Oaks, HammerHead Gym, Island Fitness, me ( to name a few. Have a fitness question? Email and your question could be answered in the next column.

Check in next month for another Beach Bod tip!

Renee Jeffreys Heil, PhD, RCEP, EIM III. Renee is a physical activity epidemiologist and clinical exercise physiologist with 20 years of experience in health and fitness. When she is not running on the Beach, she and her family are diving in the Keys or Skiing in the mountains.



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