Have a plan, eat at home and start small for your 2021 goals


By Hannah Richardson

Are you staying motivated to follow through on your New Year’s Resolutions? We are in the second full week of 2021, but you might already be finding it difficult to stay motivated to see your resolutions or goals through the end. Jameel Courtney, a fitness trainer at All Hours Fitness in Natchitoches, has some advice that might help you stay in the right headspace!

Courtney has been a trainer at All Hours for approximately three years. He advises those that want to keep their goals should actually start small. “I wouldn’t set big goals,” he said. “I would make small, consistent changes. I would tell folk to not add anything to their routine, see what you could take away when it comes to food.” For example, don’t worry so much about good or bad carbs, but take out the items you know you shouldn’t be eating. “If you can do that for about two weeks, that’ll be great,” said Courtney.

He also advises to eat at home for the first couple of weeks. “I always tell folks when they come in that I don’t care what they eat at home, as long as you eat at home. It’s going to prepare you to make your own meals. You have to cook for yourself if this is going to work.”

“Working out-wise… start with your body weight movements. You don’t necessarily have to come to a gym,” he said. Body weight movement that are great for beginners include push-ups, pull-ups and squats, and there are several modified versions you can try as you get used to these exercises. “Start small with those, and also plan which days you want to work out and what you want to work on. That way, you can have an idea and you can set a routine.” Courtney said YouTube.com was a great place for resources when it comes to getting ideas on what to work on, so you have a routine in mind if you come to the gym. It can be a little overwhelming when you walk into the gym and you see all of the machines and don’t know where to get started.

“Have a plan, eat at home and start small,” said Courtney. He mentioned that reaching your goal with a buddy would also be a huge help. “You hold each other accountable and you need that energy on some days when you don’t want to work-out.”

Courtney advised that it’s important to watch your health especially in our current COVID-19 pandemic situation. “One of the things about COVID is that it attacks people with other underlying issues. Getting healthy is really the best thing you can do. A lot of folks are waiting to get the vaccine, but the more physically prepared you are when you encounter it, because you are going to encounter it… the better you body stands a chance of fighting the virus off. Getting healthy should be at the forefront of everybody’s mind. At this point, everyone has known someone, whether it is a friend, family member or coworker, that has had it or has lost somebody. Take care of those underlying issues,” said Courtney.

Again, Jameel Courtney serves as a fitness trainer at All Hours Fitness in Natchitoches. If you need help in reaching your fitness-related goals, his Instagram handle is body_by_jameel and he can also contacted through the All Hours Fitness Facebook page.