Monday, January 4, 2021


 By Naomi Shaw

Background photo created by asierromero -

2020 will go down as one of the most stressful and unusual years in modern history. We all collectively went through 2020, which kept most of us isolated at home and working remotely. Gyms, bars, stores, offices, and more all closed to keep the population safe in the face of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. While the pandemic is not entirely in our rearview, we are coming closer than ever to the end of the global health crisis. As the pandemic and 2020 draws to a close, we can look forward to the future and the possibilities of a fresh start.

Everyone has new year’s resolutions, but they can be hard to stick to, and most people give up on resolutions after a few weeks. Getting in shape is one of the most common resolutions and also one of the most commonly abandoned, but there are tips and tricks you can use to help yourself stick with the program so you can have the healthiest 2021 possible. 

Use Modern Technology

Many people still think working out means going to a gym and using traditional gym equipment. While that is the stereotypical image of getting in shape, there are many different ways to get fit that do not include a gym or expensive gear. If you already have gym equipment or weights at home or have access to some, feel free to use that gear, but do not limit yourself by thinking those are your only options. Modern technology has provided us with a slew of different ways to workout at home, in a park, or anywhere else you have space and time. 

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There is an endless supply of workout classes and programs you can view online. Some classes are free with basic exercises that will keep you in shape using your own body weight and no special gear. Other programs are more tailored for specific activities. You can take a yoga class in the morning, ballet class after lunch, martial arts to spice up your weekends, and almost any other type of class from the comfort of your own home. Grab a pair of wireless headphones or set up a wireless speaker system so you can hear the music and instructions regardless of how you move. You are not required to work out in a gym when you have everything you need at home; pick the workout of your choice and start working out anytime you feel like it. 

Tracking And Planning

Humans enjoy setting and reaching goals or achievements. If you don’t have an end goal you are working towards, it can be easy to lose motivation or focus before giving up on your goal altogether. There is no way to ensure you will never abandon your goals, but there are ways to make staying on the path easier. Part of ensuring you don’t give up on your goal is setting a reasonable goal. You cannot expect to go from couch potato to bodybuilder in one year, as sadly, such transitions take more time than that. If you set an unrealistic goal, you are setting yourself up for failure because you will very likely not reach that lofty goal. Instead of focusing on the destination, set smaller goals that are attainable. 

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Instead of focusing on one singular goal, spread smaller goals throughout the year, so you get a taste of victory every so often to keep you motivated. Spacing goals out every few months instead of leaving one big deadline looming overhead makes it seem more like an attainable hike rather than an impossible cliff to scale. 

Setting goals is also pointless if you do not track your progress. Weighing yourself is one way to track progress, but it is far from the best stat to measure. Weightlifters are not light, but no one would call them out of shape, not to mention body type plays a role in weight. Goals to lose X pounds before Y date can result in drastic measures that ultimately hurt your health more than help. Track how many pushups you could do at the start of your fitness journey and then count again a month later and two months after that. You can measure many more stats than weight to give you a better idea of your overall health. If you stick with a routine, you will see progress even if the scale doesn’t show the numbers you would prefer. 

Sleep And Recover

Many people think fitness is only about the active parts of your life; you are only working on getting in shape when you are active and working out, but that is not true. Sleep and recovery are critical parts of getting in shape many people overlook. Getting the suggested eight hours of sleep a night does more than make you feel better in the morning; sleep is also when your body repairs muscles and works through sore spots. If you don’t sleep and recover properly, you are sabotaging your next workout by not resetting your body correctly.

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