Fitness goals: easy to make & difficult to keep

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Fitness goals: easy to make & difficult to keep

Esai recommends a comprehensive workout routine.

Esai recommends a comprehensive workout routine.

Esai recommends a comprehensive workout routine.

Esai recommends a comprehensive workout routine.

Macaela Williams, Reporter

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PEOPLE often create a goal or resolution for themselves, especially around the time of a new year. A popular goal among many people is exercise. Unfortunately, while people maintain an exercise routine during the first few weeks of a new year, very few maintain and prioritize exercise. There are some Lancers who have tips to help people achieve their exercise goals. 

“Getting in shape requires hard work and consistency,’’ Esai Castaneda (12) said. Consistency means working out every day, even if just for a little bit. However, it is important to have a diverse workout schedule that trains different parts of the body. A comprehensive workout routine is best and essential to getting into shape. 

Solely focusing on one part of the body can increase the likelihood of injury and cause an unproportionate muscle tone. Castaneda suggests doing push-ups, lunges, running, sit ups, etc. After creating a diverse workout routine, one should focus on amping up the intensity of each workout. As time progresses, one will build endurance. Many people get discouraged if they are not stellar from the beginning at a workout, but perseverance and patience are essential to achieving an exercise goal. 

While people may feel incentivized to workout because of its physical benefits, exercise is also great for mental health. Specifically, exercise has been proven to alleviate stress and release endorphins that act as mood boosters. According to the MayoClinic.org, “virtually any form of exercise, from aerobics to yoga, can act as a stress reliever. If you’re not an athlete or even if you’re out of shape, a little exercise can still go a long way toward stress management. Discover the connection between exercise and stress relief — and why exercise should be part of your stress management plan.”  

Beyond stress management, exercise improves one’s overall well-being and mental health. NCBI.gov states, “exercise improves mental health by reducing anxiety, depression, and negative moods and by improving self-esteem and cognitive function. Exercise has also been found to alleviate symptoms such as low self-esteem and social withdrawal.” Luckily, one does not need to exercise for a long period of time to reap benefits from it. NCBI.gov adds, “Thirty minutes of exercise of moderate intensity, such as brisk walking for 3 days a week, is sufficient for these health benefits. Moreover, these 30 minutes need not be continuous; three 10-minute walks are believed to be as equally useful as one 30-minute walk.” So, even walking intermittently every day is enough to improve one’s overall mental and physical well-being. 

Given the importance of exercise, one may wonder where to find workout routines. “Look online,” Donavin Alarcon (11) said. Alarcon also encourages others to keep in mind that even though exercise can be hard, the reward makes the journey well worth it. To alleviate the burden of exercising, Alarcon urges students to join sports teams at school. Alarcon got into working out after he joined the track and field team. 

Other Lancers suggest dietary changes for feeling and looking one’s best. These dietary changes do not have to be radical; they can be as simple as cutting out junk food. “No fast food,” Parker Beelar (11) said. Consistency with food is also important. Cutting out junk food means cutting out junk food completely, not one day in a given week or month. Overall, if one attaches the relevance of exercise they are more likely to stay committed to maintaining their physical fitness. Exercising improves one’s physical and mental health, and thereby their self-esteem and confidence. When one is more secure in themselves, they are better able to work towards other goals that they may want to achieve. Myzone.org corroborates this message, stating, “research has shown time and again that exercise can significantly increase our selfesteem…first, in the short-term, exercise enhances our mood and puts our mind in a more positive state. Second, in the long-term, exercise makes us feel good about our physical self – our abilities and physique.” 

As Lancers look to 2020 for new, better habits, self-care and exercise are essential. Lancers are more likely to feel confident in themselves and perform better in all aspects of their lives.