SYLACAUGA, Ala. – Many people make New Year’s resolutions to get fit or be healthier for the next year and sign up for a gym membership. However, most people who make these resolutions stop going after a month or two. SylacaugaNews.com spoke with Workout Anytime (WOA) Sylacauga staff members Ray Lee and Sabrina Fowler to see what to do to stick with your health goals after the new year.

Lee said when it comes to sticking with your goals throughout the year, find what works for you. “A lot of people jump into their workout at the new year really strong, and can’t stay consistent with that, so they stop. Find something reasonable for you as an individual,” he explained.

According to Lee, everyone does not have to go to the gym five days a week for a full workout when starting out. Going for two or three days for 30 minutes is better than nothing, and is good to start forming a habit. Taking baby steps is sometimes the way to start out, especially with nutrition and working out. Being realistic with yourself and making changes to your lifestyle, not thinking of it as a short term diet, will make better progress for the long run. “Taking it slow can be better than jumping in and falling off,” said Lee.

Working with someone else could also be a major key to success in staying consistent and to keep you accountable. This accountability partner could be a friend or personal trainer, but the WOA staff said they have seen a lot more progress when people work out together. Another thing the staff wants everyone to keep in mind is to not get frustrated if you do not see immediate progress. We live in a time where we want things now, but that is not how some things work. You did not get where you are overnight, so it is not all going to be gone overnight. Staying consistent is key. Everyone’s body is different, also, so even though you might have faster or slower progress than a friend, do not let that discourage you.

When starting out on your fitness journey, it is important to create a routine. Fowler said to set aside a certain time in the day to come to the gym, so you know that time of day is blocked off for your workout. Being consistent in coming at that time of day each day forms a habit, which makes going to the gym automatic.

Folwer also said to take advantage of everything they have at WOA. The gym has many things to help people be successful in their fitness journey such as the certified trainers on staff and free equipment orientations. “We have a gym full of equipment, but everyone is so comfortable with the treadmill because they know how to walk. We are trying to get everyone off the treadmills to use the rest of the equipment.” Members can always ask for assistance when they need help with anything at the gym. Everyone can use the equipment in the back and “get off the carpet,” Fowler stated.

Lee and Fowler want members to know “everyone” includes women. Some women do not want to go to the back because of the stereotype that lifting weights makes women bulky. “We often hear from women that they are scared to lift weights because they don’t want to get bulky, but they will not get bulky just by coming and lifting weights. It’s hard for half the men who come to get bulky just by lifting weights,” said Lee.

Lee also says not to wait until March or April when most people think the crowds will die down and the New Year’s resolutions fade. “We get busy during the normal hours after work between 5:00 and 6:00 p.m. but during the rest of the day, it isn’t that busy.” There are limited staff hours, but members can come at anytime because of their 24 hour access with the key they get. “If you want to get in shape now, then do it now.”

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