One of my small group clients made a comment to me that got me thinking. She saw another one of my clients (extremely hardcore and dedicated), getting pumped up for his next workout. She asked me, “When does this ever stop? Don’t you get to a place where you are happy with your results and then just stop?” Unfortunately, some think that this whole eating healthy and exercising is a kick someone can go on for a bit, and then go back to their old poor choices and expect to keep the benefits that they saw. If you are on an eating plan or workout plan that you couldn’t sustain (or slightly modify), for the rest of your life, I would stop doing it ASAP. You are setting yourself up for failure.
Burnout and when people aren’t consistent are two big problems. You must learn to enjoy how eating healthy makes you feel, and how the act of exercising pumps you up! If you ask those close to me, they will tell you I get SO excited for a big crisp salad, with a can of tune and vinaigrette dressing! Please check out my latest blog post in which I talk about this subject of consistency, and getting back on track when you fail.
1. It should be fun! I have found that if a person hates what they are doing, they will eventually quit. There might be times in the workout that aren’t pleasent, but as a whole, you must get excited and look forward to the workout. You might enjoy the actually exercises, the muscle burn, the cardio, the stretching, the socializing, the comaraderie, the muscle soreness the next day, or some other aspect, but whatever it is, you must enjoy some parts of it.
2. The instructor must be well likable and someone you can trust is knowledgable and you get along with. Similar to the first one, if you can’t stand the person who is telling you what to do, you will most likely hate it and quit. The instructor must be good at finding those buttons in you, to push you past your comfort level and do things you never thought were possible. They should be a role model for you and someone who inspires you to be your best!
3. The program must have variety and progressions. Variety is important for two reasons. First, it keeps you guessing and prevents you from getting bored with the workout. Second, it keeps your body guessing and limits the likelihood of plateaus. Progressions are so key, and one reason why places like curves will begin to struggle to keep their customers satisfied. The body needs progression, as the body gets more fit, it also begins to get more efficient at what it does and burns less calories. In order to keep moving toward your goals, larger and larger stressors need to be put on the body to continue the process towards change.
4. A combination of cardio, core, strength training, and stretching should be part of an effective program. If fat loss and muscle toning is your goal (which is seems it is for 95% of the people I work with) all of these components are necessary to have to reach your fitness potential.
5. Must fit your budget: It is best to find a fitness program that fits your budget and one that is convenient for your schedule. If a program takes a long time to get to, or costs too much for you to continually be part of, you need to find a better program!
I hope these 5 tips help you in choosing the right fitness program for you! Of course if you are in the Madison area, I would love to get a chance to work with you! I hope you will find that all of my programs meet these 5 points. I believe they do, and is the reason why I get to work with about 150 clients each week to help them reach their fitness goals and feel strong and healthy.