Updated: Aug 7
The old story of "The Tortoise and the Hare" comes to mind when we see many clients flood into PTSP with new injuries each February. Each year starts the same. On Jan 1st, motivated individuals set awesome fitness goals, they attack them with great enthusiasm, do too much too soon and the inevitable result is burn out or injuries :( . It is a sad sad song.
It does not have to be this way. There are simple ways to keep yourself from injury, burn out or giving up.
We want to let you in on a few secrets on how to stay the course and reach your goals in 2023.
First things First. Start Slow: We know the tortoise wins the race because he is slow and steady. BE THE TORTOISE! When setting your goals for the year we want to start slow. It's okay to think forward and get excited about the big final goal, then back up and start smaller. Set a series of mini goals that will lead you to the final result. In the strength world we call this periodization. Essentially a well thought out plan for success considering strength for each muscle group involved, mobility, cardio, overall workload and rest. Adding slowly to your program weekly will allow your body a safe amount of time to adapt to changes before you add again. Also consider, if your new program is reasonable to complete both physically and from a time standpoint. You will need to make compromises in your life to make it happen. This might take time away from something you previously did so prepare to watch less TV or spend less time on your phone!
Balance is necessary: My experience working with patients has taught me people are way more likely to keep up with something if they understand what they are doing and why they are doing it. We see many people with an imbalanced in their training, for example: all running or all weight lifting. I regularly teach my patients to have more balance in their program to keep their body getting all that it needs. Walking/hiking/biking and various forms of cardio are important for endurance and full body movement. Strength Training is important to give your joints support and enusure your body has the capacity to keep up with your sport and daily life activities. Stretching & mobility work ensures that the tissues or joints in your body have adequate length and range of motion to let you move in the ways you desire. We don't have to do all 3 of these each time we workout, (cardio, strength, mobility) but hopefully knowing that each one is individually important in its own way will motivate you to keep up with them all for balance in your program. If any of these are missing eventually you will end up injured and have to take time off to heal. If you are unsure how to balance your program that is our specialty. Reach out to us or your favorite physical therapist and we can make sure your program has everything your body needs!
Stay Motivated: figure out what makes you push yourself. Are you goal oriented looking for a PR? Is it a favorite teacher with inspiring anecdotes? Does the right music help you dig deep? Do you need accountability by working out with a friend, or taking a class? Working out with friends can make the time pass quickly and be lots of fun. These also hold us accountable if we need it.
Find something you enjoy: I will never stop dancing because I love it. Being able to keep dancing drives me to keep up with the supportive movements that dance requires: training in both strength and mobility. Many people return back to exercise for a feeling... the music, the pump, a sense of accomplishment, full body connection, a teacher that feels like a bff, a chance to turn their brain off. What do you enjoy doing? If you love it you will stick with it.
Community: Find a group of people who enjoy the same things and keep up with them. This can be an in person class, a group that meets to run, or now a days an online community like Peloton. Connection is a key to life and is a staple for a long-lasting commitment to fitness.
Don't give up when things get tough: It is easy to get off track and miss some days or even weeks. Life can be crazy. Give yourself grace. If you miss a workout or two, that is okay. If you have a couple of bad days of eating, that is okay. Don't give up! We are not perfect. It is not about perfection it is about progression!
Check in with this list and see if any of these points can help you fill in the gaps. We want to see you meet your 2023 fitness goals and avoid injury along the way. As always, we are here for you! Reach out if you need help with your programming or are interested in meeting your goals more quickly :)
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Cheers to a strong year!
Dr. Brown, Dr. Bay, Dr. Daisuke, Dr. Sandoval