Six Tips For A Healthier New Year

By: Savannah Scarborough, Follow South Jersey Intern

SOUTH JERSEY – With the holiday season behind us and a new year ahead, here are six tips from Inspira Health to stay healthy this holiday season and the year to come. 

When enjoying time with family and searching for new hobbies, it is easy to get distracted and let your fitness lay on the back burner. However, with a few adjustments and new habits, you can stay fit in 2023. 

Tip number one is to plan your workouts ahead of time. Most people fall short of their workout goals because they fail to make an effort every day due to a lack of a schedule. When planning your workouts, you can determine the best time for your schedule and weigh your options. Darby Langel, an Exercise Specialist at Inspira Fitness Connection, said, “Committing to exercise makes you more likely to stick with your plan.” 

Secondly, make sure you’ve dressed adequately for the weather. You must have the right gear for each season when enduring physical activity, especially outdoors. Many people find themselves putting off physical activity because the weather limits their ability to do so. However, if you plan ahead and dress appropriately, there is never a bad day to move your body, no matter how much. 

Another great tip is to find a workout buddy. Working out alone can be boring and hard to tackle by yourself. Finding a friend to hold yourself accountable is a great way to push yourself to your fitness goals. Furthermore, Langel says, “When someone else is counting on you to exercise with them, you’re more likely to find an excuse because you don’t want to let them down.” Working out boosts your serotonin levels in the first place, and having a friend can increase those levels even more with encouragement and motivation you cannot give yourself. 

Fourth, but just as important, is to stay hydrated and eat sensibly. A huge part of reaching your fitness goals is eating the right foods and replenishing your body with the hydration it needs. Only some things about your fitness journey have to include cardio, the gym, or other types of physical activity. It is a great idea to start practicing mindful eating and acknowledge your hunger levels. Rather than restricting what you can and can not eat, especially during the holiday season, allow yourself the foods you crave. However, you can be mindful of how much of whatever food you put into your body to feel satisfied but not over-satiated and sick. Remember that healthier foods like vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat protein products are great to incorporate into your diet because they keep you feeling fuller for longer and keep your body functioning properly. 

The second to last tip is to remember that just a bit of exercise is better than no exercise at all. “The holiday season is a busy time, so if you can’t fit in your full workout, don’t skip exercising altogether,” said Langel. There are many quick and easy exercises that you can find online or make yourself, including high-intensity interval training (HIIT), a short run and walk, an abdominal routine, or light weight lifting sessions for optimal results. 

The sixth and arguably most informative tip is to set reasonable goals and not be so hard on yourself. We all set goals for ourselves, but those goals are not always easy to accomplish. Keeping track of your fitness progress and goals is important and can be extremely helpful for motivation and seeing your progress. Physical activity and healthy eating are essential in our lives, but not everything is about how you look. Set healthy and attainable goals for yourself, but never feel as if you are less than for the way you look or what others tell you. 

There are many other ways to elevate your physical health besides physical activity. These include mental health, healthy sleep habits, eating and drinking habits, and many additional factors. Let this new year be the beginning of a healthy lifestyle change in your life, no matter how big or small.

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