Success tips for setting, achieving fitness goals

  • Published
  • By Tommie Horton
  • Robins Public Affairs
If you're among the many people who have set out to become healthier this year, Greg Reynolds, Health and Wellness Center exercise physiologist, has some tips to help you reach your goals.

For starters, Reynolds suggests setting realistic objectives and breaking long-term plans down to smaller short-term goals. Achieving those smaller goals can help provide a sense of accomplishment as well as help to keep you motivated to press forward toward your bigger objectives.

It's also important to ease into it, said Reynolds. Often people get excited when beginning to exercise, and they jump into a program that is too hard or too fast for them.

That can lead to extreme soreness, joint aches and pains - and in extreme cases - even injuries or medical events. He advises folks to ease into exercise by slowly progressing the duration, frequency and intensity of activities. That allows the body to adapt appropriately.

Another tip is to choose the right exercises. For example, running isn't the best exercise for everyone. If an activity hurts, most people probably won't continue with it very long.

Thus, choosing a more appropriate activity to start with will be best both in regards to injury risk and longevity sake, he said.

Lastly, make exercise activities fun and enjoyable. When possible, listening to music, reading books or magazines and even watching videos may help. And, if they're properly chosen, those items might even increase motivation.

Socializing can also be a big part of enjoying workouts. Reynolds said having a partner or joining classes can help by increasing both accountability and enjoyment.