blog Aug 26, 2015

I know, I know, it's still August and there are still three good solid weeks before the kids go back to school and regular routines begin to once again take hold. Three weeks is a great amount of time to continue enjoying all that the Okanagan has to offer, and yet at the same time can go by in the blink of an eye as fall is right around the corner. For some, being able to live in permanent vacation mode seems ideal, but for the most part, I believe the general population breathes a small sigh of relief when September long weekend comes to an end and kids head back to school.

The start of school is typically the start of many activities, and health and fitness are more often than not at the top of the pile. Parents often see kids going back to school as an opportunity that creates a little more time in the day to catch up on things around the house, get organized and then begin or resume some type of health and fitness or weight loss program. Sound familiar?

Before you dive in to something however, you may want to take a few things into consideration and ask yourself these questions;

  1. Are my expectations realistic? Is the time I have available each week sufficient to allow me to reach my goals in the expected time frame? Someone who jogs 30 minutes daily would not likely be ready to run a half marathon in three months.

  2. Is the program I've chosen safe? Especially for those wishing to lose weight, check that the program you are choosing is backed by science, works with the physiology of the body and makes sense.

  3. Can I do this for the rest of my life? Programs that promise drastic results in very little time are generally not sustainable. Creating a physique like that of a professional body builder in a very short amount of time often causes people to overdo it on the exercise, creating injuries and unsustainable results with weight loss which leads to yo-yo dieting and slowing of the metabolism. Neither option a good choice.

  4. What is my why? Entering into any program without a strong reason will not get you lasting results. Ask yourself, “What will achieving my goals give me?” Let's use losing weight as the example. “If I lose weight I will have more energy; more energy means I will be able to get out in the yard and play with my kids after dinner; time spent each day with my kids builds stronger relationships; ultimately, losing the weight will give me more time and better relationships with my kids.” A much stronger reason to stick to a program than simply, “I know I'll be healthier in the long run if I lose this weight.”

So, I've given you a few things to questions to ask yourself before diving in to a fall program, but with so many different types of program out there for health, fitness and weight loss so how do you choose? Ultimately, it really comes down to personal preference, but I do have a few suggestions. Make sure your program fits your personality. If staying focused and on track is something you struggle with, consider joining a group. Knowing that several people will notice your absence if you decide to ditch one week is a great accountability partner. Remember that no one is perfect. We all have bad days, you will most likely have a set back at some point, that's just life so choose a program that does not require perfection in order for you to achieve results. And lastly, make sure what you choose to do is fun. Just like everyday challenges with your job, your kids, or your spouse, some days you may find your program more challenging than others. And really, we can't grow or improve any aspect of our lives without a challenge. But in the end, you'll want to choose a nutrition plan that makes sense and that shows you how to eat the foods you love correctly while encouraging exercises you enjoy. Because when you do, the challenges won't seem so big and the rewards will be overwhelming. This September will you fall back into health and fitness?

Watch for the 8 Weeks is All it Takes Core Challenge airing weekly on Shaw TV beginning Sunday, August 30 and witness the transformations.

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