Dear Guys
Every year I read a ton of articles on how to get fit for the New Year, but I never have! How can I make this year different?

Sarah Ellin

Many people start the New Year vowing to shed 10 or 20 pounds, but by the time the 12 months have rolled around, their weight has gone up instead of down! Unfortunately, there’s no silver bullet, but here are seven tips to make it easier to accomplish:

1. Make it Fun: It is harder to stick to something you don’t enjoy. If you haven’t discovered an exercise you like (and you’ve tried everything from running to ballet), find yourself some workout buddies. We often ‘buddy’ people up at our gyms because it provides tons of motivation and encouragement and a little bit of socializing time as well.

2. Make it Mean Something: It is hard to exercise if you don’t know why! Fixate on a target: It might be a magic number on the scales, an event you’re going to or a race you want to run. Equally important is measuring your success on the way – it’s the greatest motivator. Start your first session with a trainer, create a plan and mark off every milestone you meet.

3. Make it a Date: If you let your workout be the easiest thing to change in your diary, you’ll probably only get there 50 percent of the time. Treat it like a doctor’s appointment or a business meeting.

4. Make it Safe: Make an appointment with a personal trainer who will assess your weight, age and fitness level and create a plan for you, which they’ll show you how to do safely.

5. Make it a 360-Degree Approach: If you work out but carry on with bad eating habits, you won’t get the results you want. Instead, think of healthy eating as a way to double your exercise efforts and help you reach your goals even sooner.

6. Make it OK to Miss: We all fall off the wagon sometimes. The key is not to worry; just focus on today and how well you’re going to exercise and eat and pick that healthy attitude back up.

7. Make it High-Tech: There are a host of applications for mobile phones and tablets that will create workouts, count calories and track every step of your fitness progress. There are even great play lists ready to download. If there’s a device you think will keep you on track, invest.

Billy Katz and Hudson Ellis are the co-owners of Simply Fit gyms. Read more tips from them in Renaissance Publishing’s e-newsletter.

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