Every season, around this time, people join their families in celebrating Christmas, Hannukah, Festivus, Kwanza and Holy Iron Boomerang Day. Copious amounts of food and alcohol and fruitcake (which is not classified as a food but rather has the distinction of being its own entity) are consumed, people burp, vomit and generally feel ill.
With that of course, New Years resolutions are born and people tromp off to the gym to get a membership to lose the excess weight and baggage.
The psychological aspect of this guilt and reaction is tremendous. In fact, according to the International Health, Racquet and Sportsclub Association, 50% of all memberships are signed in January. Health clubs can’t handle the volume of all their members coming in and using the facilities. But they don’t have to since the majority of people that signed during this period, end up coming only a handful of times during the course of their annual membership. So, if the average gym is $50/month ($600/year) and you get to the gym maybe 6 times during the year, you’re paying $100 a visit. Great deal, huh? Just to clarify, that was a rhetorical question. And to make the situation even more expensive, the gyms sell personal training, typically at 3 times a week.
So what’s the solution to all this?
- Focus on setting an overall goal (e.g. I want to live a healthy life)
- Create smaller goals that are manageable (e.g. I’m going to take up tennis)
- Cross-train to improve mental and physical health and to decrease the chance of injury
- Stay away from joining the gym during the holiday season
So how does all this work?
If you create an overall, holistic approach to health, you no longer get slotted into a guilt and reaction type of mindset. The goal is longevity and this goal does not have a season or schedule behind it. I definitely believe that trainers should be used, typically when one is starting off in a new venture but if you’re comfortable creating your own schedule, go for it.
When you go crazy on the holidays and eat your face silly, it’s okay, don’t stress because your background of regular and consistent exercise and diet will address the extra calories.
Just sit back, enjoy your family, enjoy the meal and relax because it’ll all work out.