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THE LONG GAME #weightloss #advice

Below is a piece that I wrote for my workplace newsletter about a month ago… have been meaning to post it for awhile now and keep forgetting. Enjoy!

As we plunge headlong into a New Year, you may have made a few New Year’s resolutions. I’m willing to wager that something along the lines of “Get Fit” is on that list. Research shows that “Getting Back in Shape” is one of the highest ranked New Year’s Resolutions every year. According to Time Magazine, it’s also the #1 broken New Year’s Resolution.

It’s no wonder. Just trying to juggle work and family life is a challenge most of the time, let alone a social life or finding consistent time to exercise.

So, allow me to pass along some good advice that was given to me two years ago when I started my own fitness journey. You ready? Here’s the secret: “getting back in shape” is a long game. It doesn’t happen overnight.

We’ve been conditioned by weight-loss commercials and television shows to see people dropping 5, 10, 20 pounds every week. This leaves us to believe that if we go to the gym for a month and eat right, then we’ll have an instant weightloss
success story. The reality is, losing weight is hard. It means breaking some bad habits that we enjoy (like junk food). Unless you are a reality show contestant who can train for 12 hours a day, the “overnight success” view of fitness
isn’t practical.

What is practical is to understand that we can lose weight the same way we put it on in the first place – little by little. It’s a little more exercise here, a little more there, until it becomes a habit coupled with better eating choices. No, it’s
not easy. But, this is a case where having a long-term, little-by-little perspective of fitness makes it a lot more manageable. It’s surprising how quickly small lifestyle changes do add up.

Here are two quick tips to take with you into the New Year and, if it’s on your list, the new you.

MAKE TIME: So many people think that they will get in shape when they have a little more time. There is no more time. All of us have the same allotment of 24 hours each day. You will never, ever “find” time to exercise. You have to make time. And, once you make the time, tell your family and friends. Get accountable for it. Here’s the easiest way to make more time: watch less TV. I know it’s hard to believe, but your world will not implode if you watch three, instead of four, sitcoms each night. There, I’ve just found 30 extra minutes a day for you.

DO WHAT YOU ENJOY: Lots of folks I know have gotten into running as their favorite form of exercise. Honestly? I hate running. With the exception of trail running, where there’s an element of risk involved, I personally find running
to be boring. So, I’ve found other things I love. For me, it’s mountain biking, swimming and the occasional trail run. But that’s me. Here’s the thing: if you’re going to make time in your busy life to exercise then it’d better be something
you’re going to look forward to doing. Otherwise, it’s not going to become habit. So, whether it’s tennis, aerobics, weight lifting, or horseback riding, find what you love and make it yours!

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