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Posted: January 02, 2018

10 tips for sticking with your exercise plan in the new year

Tips For Keeping Your New Year's Resolutions

By Joshua Trudell, Rare.us

It’s the New Year’s resolution that everyone has and virtually no one keeps: We want to get in shape.

Here are 10 tips to help you keep on track:

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1. Make a plan

If you made your decision on New Year’s Eve, that’s only making a decision based on your emotional state that day. Make a plan for big and small goals and particular parts of your body you want to target to help keep you focused. A health professional can help with this.

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2. Be realistic

While you might be adamant that you’ll never eat bread, meat or chocolate chip cookies again, making that one of your goals is setting yourself up to fail. Instead, go for what’s attainable: Instead of having your favorite food three days a week, you’ll only have it once. Start small and build.

>> How to keep your New Year's resolutions this time

3. Create a battle plan

Despite all your best efforts, temptation will come knocking. Try to decide in advance how you will deal with wanting to skip that exercise class or have that piece of cake. This could include calling or texting a weight loss buddy, practicing positive thinking and self-talk, or reminding yourself how your “bad” will affect your goal.

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4. Talk about it openly

Wanting to live a healthier life is something to be proud of, not ashamed of. Don’t treat your resolution like a dirty little secret. Tell friends and family members who will be there to support your resolve.

With any luck, they’ll help you find a buddy who shares your New Year’s resolution and can help you stay motivated.

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5. Document your feelings

Why is getting in better shape a good idea? Write down all the reasons that are motivating you, from wanting to be able to walk up the stairs without losing your breath to wanting to look better on the beach. Keep your list with you and refer to it when you need help keeping your resolve.

6. Keep track of your progress

It sounds like this list has more writing down than working out, but it is important to keep track of your progress. Being able to see where you were and how far you’ve come is an important way to keep yourself motivated.

For example, instead of focusing on losing 30 pounds, focus on losing the first five. Keep a food journal to help you stay on track, and reward yourself for each five pounds lost.

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7. Rewards are OK

Rewards are a good thing. Don’t think that because you’re losing weight, you have to become an ascetic. Instead of going out to eat to celebrate a milestone, treat yourself to new fitness clothes or by going out to a movie.

>> 9 inspiring New Year's resolution quotes to motivate you in 2018

8. 21 days

Exercising and working out won’t become good habits overnight. By Tuesday of the second week, all the newness will have worn off, and it’ll start getting harder to get up and get moving, especially if you’re exercising before work.

Experts say it takes about 21 days for a new activity to become a habit and six months for it to become part of your personality. Get through that first three-week stretch, and you’ll be making real progress.

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9. Give yourself a break

It’s not the day missed at the gym or the indulgence in ice cream that’ll knock you off track – it’s the obsessing about it afterward.

Negative thought patterns won’t help maintain your positive plan. Do the best you can each day, and take one day at a time.

10. Don’t give up

Maybe you hit the Valentine’s Day wall – or even the Jan. 15 wall. But that’s not a reason to give up.

Start with one meal, then one day. You can do anything for 24 hours. Once you start building on the 24-hour increments, before long you’ll be back in the groove.

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Spencer Platt/Getty Images

How much will you have to exercise to burn off that turkey dinner?

Spencer Platt/Getty Images

How much will you have to exercise to burn off that turkey dinner?

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

How to keep your New Year’s resolutions this time

At the start of every new year, you may think to yourself, "I'm going to keep my New Year's resolution this year."  Except it rarely happens.

Maybe you want to lose weight or be better at time management. Here are some tips on how not to fail after the first week of January.

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Number one: Pick a realistic goal. Take baby steps by aiming to lose 15 pounds instead of 30. 

Number two: If you want to shoot for a bigger goal, trick yourself by setting mini-goals. Instead of 30 pounds over six months, tell yourself that you want to lose 5 pounds each month.

It works across the board. If you are trying to budget better in the new year, set lenient limits first and then challenge yourself to slowly live off less.

Which leads to the third tip: Use an app to keep track of your progress. Mint is one app for money management. If you are trying to lose weight, check out Noom or Fooducate. If you are aiming for better time management, try Remember the Milk.

Number four: Do it with a friend. Nothing says motivation like your best friend struggling alongside you.

Number five: Celebrate your progress. Whether it's a cheat day, a glass of wine or a bubble bath, find a way to treat yourself for each solid week of progress you make.

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9 inspiring New Year's resolution quotes to motivate you in 2018

"Have you made your New Year's resolutions yet?"

Perhaps you've been asked this question one too many times in the past few weeks, and you've just laughed nervously and changed the subject. Or perhaps you're one of the more optimistic types who has a full list, including a game plan on how you're going to stick to them.

>> Read more trending news

Either way, when reality sets in, we all know that New Year's resolutions are often made just to be broken within the first few weeks or months of the new year. In fact, a 2015 report by U.S. News & World Report says some 80 percent of resolution makers go back on their commitments by the second week of February.

It's no surprise, then, that New Year's resolutions can actually make some people depressed, according to Psychology Today. Studies have shown that those who fail at keeping their commitments to themselves "experience lowered self-esteem, sadness and depression."

As we enter a new year, with new goals in mind, we should feel optimistic, not depressed. Whether or not we keep all our resolutions shouldn't affect our self-esteem.

So, when you're feeling down about slipping up or thinking about just foregoing resolutions all together, the following quotes will help keep you going.

1. Let go of the past.

2. It's never too late to try something different.

3. Embrace change and try new things.

4. Don't miss the moment.

5. You’ve got this.

6. Step into a new you.

7. Accept your mistakes and move forward.

8. Believe in yourself.

9. Remember, 2018 is a clean slate.

New Year's resolutions: 4 tips for avoiding gym membership scams

The holidays are over and it’s time to get back in shape, but officials are warning consumers about potential gym membership scams.

>> Read more trending news 

In 2017, the Ohio Attorney General’s Office received about 140 complaints involving fitness or health club memberships. Top problem areas included cancellation and billing issues. Under Ohio’s Prepaid Entertainment Contracts Act, consumers generally have three business days to cancel a contract for gym memberships and other “health spa services,” martial arts training, dance studio lessons, or social referral services (such as a dating service).

>> How to keep your New Year’s resolutions this time

“This is a time when many people are thinking about joining a gym, and that can be a great way to get in shape. We just want consumers to understand what they’re signing up for,” said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine. “A little bit of prevention can go a long way.”

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DeWine’s tips for avoiding scams include the following:

1. Research the gym. Look for complaints on file with your local attorney general’s office or Better Business Bureau, and check online reviews for feedback from current or past customers. Pay attention to how a business addresses customer complaints.

2. Read contracts carefully. Make sure verbal agreements are put in writing. Otherwise, they are not guaranteed.

3. Watch out for extra fees. Determine the total cost of your membership. Find out if there are any extra fees for services like fitness classes or personal training. Also find out if payments will be withdrawn automatically from your account.

4. Check the cancellation policy. Understand what you would need to do to cancel your contract and how far in advance cancellations must be made. Many contracts renew automatically, so be sure to check the total length of the contract. 

 

Meghan Markle vows to break these bad habits in her New Year's resolutions

Before she joins the royal family, Meghan Markle has some work to do on becoming more “ladylike,” according to the New Year’s resolutions she makes every year.

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In 2016, the now bride-to-be wrote about her New Year’s resolutions on her blog. Among them are two that she said she has to make “every single year”: “Stop biting my nails. Stop swearing.”

“The swearing comes in lulls triggered by being overworked or feeling mighty cheeky after a couple drinks,” she wrote at the time. “And when it comes to the biting of the nails – well, it still happens with a turbulent flight or a stressful day. It’s unladylike. But then again, so is the swearing."

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With plans to marry Prince Harry, it looks like Markle might actually have to follow through with those resolutions this year. In fact, she’s taking royal etiquette lessons in preparation — with instruction from her fiance, Prince Harry himself.

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Part of her training will include the politics of curtsying. The actress and bride-to-be will reportedly be expected to curtsy to the queen, her soon-to-be sister-in-law, the Duchess of Cambridge, Princess Anne, Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice (though, if Harry is not in the room, they will be expected to curtsy to her). In addition, she will have to learn how to handle herself at a state dinner, how to properly address dignitaries and royal table etiquette — and we have a feeling nail-biting and swearing won’t be looked upon too kindly in such scenarios.

Markle and the prince are set to tie the knot this May. They announced their engagement at the end of last month.

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“The marriage of His Royal Highness Prince Henry of Wales and Ms. Meghan Markle will take place at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor Castle in May 2018,” Kensington Palace announced. “Her Majesty The Queen has granted permission for the wedding to take place at the Chapel.”

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