By Hannah Richardson
After an arduous year such as 2020, the start of this New Year can be seized by many as a perfect time to get a fresh start! While we may jump on gym memberships and the meal-prep train when it comes to the most popular New Year’s Resolution – getting fit/healthier – it can be difficult to obtain the constant motivation to keep those resolutions. I’ve been in touch with several area trainers who can give you the best advice when it comes to maintaining motivation when it seems hard to keep going and easier to give up completely.
Sarah Zeagler has been a personal trainer at Basic Health and Fitness for eight years.
“My advice to those who want to start 2021 off on the right foot health wise is to keep it simple. Don’t overwhelm yourself with trying to eliminate everything or find the perfect diet plan,” said Zeagler. “Just start by simply making healthier choices. Drink more water, choose grilled over fried, add a 30-minute walk to your daily routine and find an accountability partner.”
When it comes to reaching your weight loss goals, she recommends the My Fitness Pal app on mobile devices. “You can set up your personal profile based on your weight and exercise goals. It is an easy way to track your daily calorie intake and exercise output,” said Zeagler. “I use it myself and I love it. It’s super easy. You can keep it simple or make it as detailed as you’d like. “
“It is so important for people to have a ‘why.’ When you know what your ‘why’ is and you value it, you will make the changes necessary to become the healthiest version of yourself. Set your health and fitness goals and think about why you want to achieve those goals.” Zeagler says her “why” is her family. “I want to be the healthiest version of myself so that I can truly enjoy every second of life with them. I want to be a positive role model for them. Don’t let one ‘bad’ meal derail you. Enjoy it, and then get right back on track with the next meal. Try not to look at eating healthy and exercising as punishment for eating badly. Look at eating healthy and exercising as the best ways to keep your body nutritionally and physically sound so that you can enjoy everything life has to offer. Food and exercise are fuel for your body, not punishment. You only get one body in this life. Take care of it!”
She also says 2020 has definitely been a challenging year for herself, as it has been for many people. “Because of the pandemic that our country is in, it is vitally important that people take their health seriously. We all need to eat healthier, exercise more and take the proper vitamins to keep our bodies as healthy as possible. As for setting a New Year’s resolution, I personally made a vow in 2010 to never make another New Year’s resolution. I vowed on Jan. 1, 2010, to make healthier choices and to start exercising on a regular basis. I hired a personal trainer and got started on my life long health and wellness goals. Over the course of the past 10 years, I have lost and kept off 35 pounds and exercise on a regular basis. My exercise program is based on strength and cardiovascular health. I have learned through my own trials over the past 10 years, that there isn’t a ‘magic pill’ or a cookie cutter diet. You have to find what works for you, be consistent and be patient with yourself. Start small, set goals and take it one day at a time. Try hard not to focus on the scale but try to focus on how you feel. Eating healthy and exercising is just simply good for you. Period. You don’t have to be perfect to get results. You just have to get started and be consistent. If you have to make a resolution for 2021, make a resolution to make your health a priority! This is so important considering all that is going on around us. Making healthy choices with food and exercise are not only good for your body’s physical well being, they are vital for it’s mental state as well.”