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Kick Your Butt Into Gear and Live Healthier This Spring

Mar 28, 2008
By now you have found the resources, bought the product, or joined a gym and are ready to kick your butt into gear to finally get fit and healthy this spring.

So you have decided that now is time to take action and make health and fitness a priority. At this point, the work really begins. Don't panic, though. With a few minutes spent pointed in the right direction, you'll see how a little effort will pay off with big results and rewards in no time.

If your goal is to exercise more, this is where hit your local parks running trail, pull out your favorite exercise DVD, call your favorite dance studio, dust off that tennis racket or get to the gym. If you're focused on eating less junk food, it's time to stop pulling through the drive thru and start picking up fresh, healthy foods from the grocery store.

The second aspect of this take-action step is to prioritize your new goals. It's extremely easy to let the hustle and bustle of life take the lead and push your health and fitness plans fall to the side. If there's a chance family time and chores at home will keep you away from the gym in the evening, make the stop on the way home from work. If packing lunch the night before will keep you away from the fast food at lunchtime, plan ahead.

These things take work. They also take planning and a shuffling of priorities. But when things start to get hectic and it gets tempting to fall back into old habits, pull out that sheet of paper with your health disappointments and your preview of your new, healthier life - it will really help you stay on track.

Getting started can be the toughest part, but once your health goals become a part of your everyday life, you'll start to see that it was worth the work. And as your fitness and health improves, the rewards you see and feel will keep you motivated to keep going.

Hold Yourself Accountable
Personal accountability is really the key step to kicking your butt into gear, and it is often overlooked. Once you've reached Step 5, there's a significant amount of planning and work that has gone into your goal to live a healthier life. What tends to happen, though, is that life presents bumps in the road (additional responsibilities at work, trouble with the kids, an illness, etc.) we allow ourselves to get off track and stay that way. And make no mistake -- there will be missteps and you will get off track. It happens to the best of us.

When that happens, though, you have to be ready to forgive yourself, but still hold yourself accountable. You've got to be willing to say, "OK, I've been doing the work and I'm doing the things I said I would do. I had a couple of little missteps, but now I'm going to get back in line and I'm going to keep forging ahead." The keys to fitness and health are in your hands, and no one else's. The decisions to make the time and give the effort to get and stay where you need to be are yours to make.

All it takes is one magic minute. Don't worry: one magic minute has nothing in common with "7 Minute Abs" or "Three Minute Thighs." The magic minute is simple little 60-second routine of mental focus that will help you succeed. This is when you make clear and decisive decisions that hold you accountable to your plan of action.

This is how it works. Set aside one minute each day - and set it at least one hour before a time when you're the least likely than any other time of the day to have other engagements and commitments. Maybe it's early in the morning before everyone else is awake? In the evening after work but before dinner? Whenever you have the least crowded hour of your day. Use your One Magic Minute to stop and think clearly about how you've done in working toward your goals. Hold yourself accountable. Ask, "Did I do what I said I was going to do?"

If you did, spend that minute celebrating. Sing, dance, or laugh at yourself for thinking about singing and dancing. Whatever you do, spend 60 seconds feeling good about your success of the day. And if you didn't follow through with what you told yourself you would do, hold yourself accountable. You've got that hour to put those thoughts into action. And if that hour just won't work, hold yourself accountable by committing yourself to the next day's hour.

Every day, spend one magic minute reviewing your strides toward a healthier lifestyle and holding yourself accountable for both your successes and your missteps. Remember that the improvements in your life will be the greatest reward you give yourself.

Congratulations -- You're On Your Way!
That's it! If you're committed to kicking your butt into gear, then just follow this plan and you've laid the groundwork toward achieving your fitness goals.
About the Author
Tracy Benham, MS Exercise Physiologist and Expert Health And Fitness Instructor Helps Your Kick Your Butt Into Gear By Teaching You Powerful Strategies to Get In Shape, Get Fit and Active while Living healthier. Find out More Info At http://www.kickyourbuttintogear.com
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