By Guest Blogger, Susan O’Neill
Are you not feeling as skinny in those skinny jeans since a pumpkin full of calories entered your home? Are you Googling sunlamps now that daylight savings started? Before you know it, you will be enjoying mashed potatoes and pecan pie and it is just downhill from there until the New Year’s resolution and the packed gym!
Sound familiar? The school year is hectic, our days are full and the daylight is fleeting. But we can take control now, avoid the holiday weight gain and be ahead of the crowds, feeling fit and fabulous when all those January magazines hit newsstands telling you how to keep your New Year’s resolution. Starting or sticking to your exercise regime now and keeping it up through the holidays has countless benefits. You can find the time, and make you and your health a priority.
Exercise decreases stress, boosts energy, suppresses appetite, improves mood, sleep and immune system. After a great workout, you are more likely to make healthier choices for you and your family. All of these reasons are great and hold even more importance during this hectic time of year. So no more excuses! Let’s get moving and have fun!
Mix it up! Dread the “dreadmill”? Sick of your gym’s classes? Don’t want to run in the dark by yourself? Charlotte has so many ways to get fit.
Fitness Boot Camps: Working with a group and pushing yourself to be stronger and faster has great payoffs and is very affordable. Every area in Charlotte offers great boot camps, such as SouthPark Boot Camp and Believe and Achieve Boot Camp.
Running Groups: Most of the running stores in Charlotte have running groups that are free or offer running clinics. Check out the Common Market Running Group and Run For Your Life classes as well as the services offered at Charlotte Running Company. Changing up your route and having running mates can get you hitting the street again.
Yoga: Need to give your body a break from pounding the pavement? Lulu Lemon offers free yoga every Saturday.
Try something new with a total body workout and the latest rage from Pure Barre.
Looking for something else? Carolina Health and Fitness has a complete list of Charlotte area fitness events on their calendar.
Check yourself! Every trainer and nutritionist will tell you a food journal is a vital step in having a healthy lifestyle. Recording what you eat is an education and a discipline, especially using My Plate on www.livestrong.com. You will not want to record that gigantic spoonful of your child’s mac and cheese, so you will put it down. Reducing your daily caloric intake by 200 calories will lead to dropping lbs!!
Set a goal! Yes, most races are in the Spring and early Fall, but you can find some nice ones in the winter months, and at FUN locations: Hilton Head Bridge Run, Tybee Island Run, Disney Running…girls trip anyone?
Goals don’t have to be running a certain distance or dropping lbs. How about swimming a number of laps without resting? How about military push-ups? No wine for a month? No eating out until 2011 (that’s good for the wallet, too). And reward yourself…skinny jeans, fabulous purse, a romantic night on the town…boots anyone??!!!
No More Excuses!!! Work hard now and you won’t be a “newbie” on January 1st!!
Susan O’Neill is the founder of SouthPark Boot Camp. She is an AFAA certified Group Fitness Instructor, marathon runner, mother of four young children, and fitness enthusiast.