Not an exciting concept, nor is it new. This doesn’t change the fact that it’s true. The finish line moves forward, as you move forward.
Each new program creates a new challenge, and it should. It may sound tired, but the truth is, you have to continually find new challenges and goals to keep yourself moving forward. More than 8 weeks with the same exercises or weight selection is a recipe for stagnation.
With that in mind, let’s examine how we can think outside the box a bit, and keep you moving forward!
Create new goals for each 6-8 week time period
- Add in new exercises.
- Change up your strategy: heavier weights/less reps, or lighter weights with more reps.
- Add a new class; switch up the type of class to keep it interesting for you and your body.
- Give yourself something to work toward—a 5k run or walk, a bike ride for charity, a mud run. This will give you a goal to work toward.
- Ask for assignments; a personal trainer can help set up a program for you and you can run with it for the 6-8 weeks…then they’ll change it up at the appropriate time. I do this with a couple of clients. For my regular weekly folks, I automatically do different exercises as time goes on—I feel like the program morphs—as I note changes in strength and endurance, I automatically adapt to make it more challenging.
Create a pact with yourself
- Stop in the Fitness Center and set a goal with one of the fitness floor staff.
- Sign a “contract” with yourself to accomplish your goal within the next few months.
- Work with the fitness floor staff to set up a plan to accomplish that goal—because what’s a goal without a plan?!
- Share your goal with the world! (or at least with friends and family.)
- Get going and get moving! ROCK that plan and accomplish that goal!
- Keep motivated by posting positive messages or sharing notes about how you are reaching your goal.
- At the finish of the time period, meet with the fitness staff for a follow up appointment and see how far you’ve come!
Try this workout:
Obviously, this is a challenging workout for most of us. But for those who look at this and see impossibility, I challenge you to try it with modifications! A 10 minute run can be a walk at a brisk pace, jumping jacks can be a 1/2 jack alternative, and weighted crunches can be just crunches. So try this out, with or without modifications, and see how far you get! (Then tell us in the comments!)
New to all of this and still not sure where to start?
Written by Melissa Abramovich, ACE CPT, NASM CGT, AAHFRP Medical Exercise Specialist at Elite Sports Club-River Glen
Melissa Abramovich went into Personal Training and Group Exercise instruction after successfully losing 140 pounds through healthy diet and exercise. Her desire to help others drove her forward into a career helping others to make healthier choices. She is an ACE certified personal trainer and now also a Medical Exercise Specialist (AAHFRP), helping clients with a myriad of health issues at Elite Sports Clubs. She holds a Bachelor’s degree, and many group exercise related certifications as well.
This information is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent any disease. All material in this article is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you have regarding a medical condition, and before undertaking any diet, exercise, or other health program.