The New Year is viewed as a fresh start, and a time to make exciting resolutions and intentions for the months ahead. Our goals often fall into categories such as career, relationships, and fitness. While fitness activities can sometimes seem like a chore, especially when working out in the winter months, research suggests that exercise is fun when you find something you enjoy.
To celebrate the New Year, try a new-to-you workout to add some variety to your routine. Who knows? You might achieve your health goals and have a great time in the process! No matter what, you’ll have a new experience to tell your friends and family about.
Here are suggestions for workouts to try this year:
Barre Classes – Ballet-inspired barre workouts focus on small, isometric movements to tone muscles and burn fat. The movements are low impact and always end with a stretching session to promote long, lean muscle. Studios such as The Bar Method continue to open new locations, and offer classes for every level of experience. You can try this option for at-home barre workouts if you prefer to learn some moves for free from the convenience of your living room.
CrossFit – CrossFit is a strength and conditioning program with varied workouts each day referred to as “workout of the day” or “WOD” for short. The classes are typically one hour with a warm-up, the actual workout that averages 20 minutes, and a cool down for stretching and mobility. CrossFit might seem intimidating if you’ve never worked with barbells or medicine balls, but all levels are welcome and each workout can be modified. Here’s some information on how to start.
Yoga – If you haven’t tried yoga yet, now is the time! Yoga is a valuable part of a self-care regimen, and once you’ve learned the basics, you can practice yoga anytime and anywhere. Use Google to locate yoga studios in your area, and be sure to ask about discounts and deals for first-timers. As with all fitness activities, studios offer valuable personal instruction for beginners, but you can also practice yoga at home.
Zumba – Zumba classes have been around since the 90s, and with a following of enthusiastic devotees, it’s here to stay. No dance experience? No problem. The classes are designed for beginners through advanced levels, and the high-energy instructors start slow to teach you the choreography. If you’re worried about feeling self-conscious, remember everyone is focused on his or her own moves. Sign up for a class with a friend and enjoy an hour of dancing to upbeat music.
If you’re planning to start a running routine in 2013, check out our running tips for beginners. Be sure to fuel before your workouts to provide energy, and refuel to repair muscle and replenish energy stores.
As always, when making any fitness changes, be sure to honor your body and make smart decisions.
What workouts will you try this year?