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Getting fit, sticking to resolutions in the new year

Every year, thousands of people create a New Year’s resolution to try and become a better person, a more healthy person or any number of other such lifestyle changes.

When it comes to having a New Year’s resolution that involves losing weight or just getting to the gym more often, the New Richmond Area Centre has it covered.

“A lot of people come out and try to lose 10-15 pounds, or whatever their resolution is, but there is a lot more to losing weight and setting a resolution than just coming to the gym to lose weight,” said Centre Training and Sports Manager Kyle Koll. “It has been shown that New Year’s is not even the best time to start that resolution since people are still coming off the holidays with a lot of things going on. It is still an overwhelming time to be making this big lifestyle change. ”

According to Koll there are six things anyone can do to help themselves reach their goals in the new year.

Focus on one thing

The first of Koll’s tips for reaching a goal is to stay focused on one area rather than trying to make a ton of changes all at once.

“When it comes to choosing your resolution, it doesn’t have to be one large goal,” Koll said. “It can be broken into several small resolutions as well. A lot of small changes can equal a big change in life. That is something that is important to tell people.”

Once that first change or two is made, that is when a person can move on to the next area of focus, Koll said.

Be realistic

One of Koll’s most important tips is to make sure not to set yourself up for failure.

“Having a realistic resolution is very important as well,” Koll said. “For someone who hasn’t run a 5K, trying to run a marathon this year would be too much and they should trim that goal down a little bit. Don’t set yourself up for failure.”

Setting realistic goals makes reaching them that much easier. And once a small goal is reached a person can move on to the next goal, up the difficulty level or take the next step to a bigger goal.

Anticipate problems

Although it might seem obvious, most people don’t realize or have a hard time accepting that there will be speed bumps on the road to achieving any goal.

“You will have weekends when you are sick, or your kids are sick, or you are just busy and you might not hit that goal the first time,” Koll said. “That doesn’t mean that it is time to throw in the towel. Instead, it is a time to address what you did wrong and what you can do better, then change those things to do better the next time.”

Every plan has one or two hiccups, so Koll advised not to let one bad day or a few minor setbacks get in the way of reaching the ultimate goal. The key is to use those setbacks as learning tools to help avoid those problems the next time around, Koll said.

Pick a start date

Another tip Koll had for reaching any goal is setting a date to start reaching for the goal rather than just giving a vague start date. Koll advised picking a day where a person is well rested, enthusiastic and surrounded by positive people.

Accept failure

Sometimes people don’t reach their goals, and that is OK, Koll said.

“Although you don’t want to set yourself up for failure, you should still expect failure,” Koll said. “You will hit a few road bumps and you will have setbacks, but that is OK. It is even helpful to identify those barriers you might hit ahead of time so you can better overcome them when they do come up.”

Koll said that accepting the failure and moving on is one of the hardest things to do. But perseverance is key, Koll said. Being able to continue on and keep going despite the failure is what helps people grow.

Reward your hard work

Koll’s last tip is about rewarding hard work. Giving rewards, even if they are small, can help make reaching a goal much easier to bear as well as help keep a person focused and on track. Rewards can be anything from a small reward for weekly goals, like a day off, to larger rewards for reaching the halfway point, like a new pair of shoes. And once the ultimate goal is reached, that is when a person can really treat themselves for making it to the end.

Although it isn’t one of his six tips, Koll also said that getting together and working out with a friend or a larger group, like with one of the Centre’s workout classes, can really help keep someone on track.

“Getting someone to help you during your workouts, or to join you, is a great idea,” Koll said. “The Centre being a kind of community place, we offer a lot of opportunities to get together with groups to help you achieve your overall goals and be active. We offer boot camp classes as well as many other classes. Those are ways to bring a community or a social aspect to achieving your resolution.”

Whatever a person decides to choose for their resolution, the New Richmond Area Centre is always there to help, Koll said.

“We offer a lot of information on how to get started,” Koll said. “Our fitness center is always staffed, so anyone who is starting off new has good resources for them whether it is information on the equipment, how things work and what they should be doing.”

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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