Follow through on fitness for your new year’s resolution

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Ian Coogan
  • 439th Operations Group
If you're like most, you've probably already made a few resolutions for this upcoming year.

And, one of those resolutions is probably to lose a few of those pounds you may gain over the holidays, or maybe it's to get over a 90 on your next Air Force fitness test.

Well, one of my resolutions is to help you get there.

So, I thought I would share some of the tips I follow to stay in shape:

· Stay consistent. "Cramming" for your fitness test is just as bad as cramming for your professional military education test. Sure, you might pass, but are you really helping yourself in the long run? Staying consistent with your workouts will help you avoid most of those aches and pains you feel when you start your fitness routine up again after an extended break. You'll be surprised how easy it is to stay in great shape with just 20 to 30 minutes of vigorous exercise five days a week.

· Keep it interesting. We can all get bored with things very quickly. If all you do is run on the treadmill or the elliptical, it's no wonder you aren't consistent with your workouts. Spice up your routine a little bit. Play some "pick up" basketball in the base gym (I hear they're always looking for new players), or try that Beachbody Fit Club. Don't worry. Nobody will laugh. They'll be too focused on their own workout to pay attention to how you're doing. Make you're workouts fun and something you look forward to instead of a chore and something you dread.

· Track your workouts. You might have heard the quote, "Whatever we measure becomes important." Write down each workout on a piece of paper. Don't be too elaborate at first. Just keep track of the number of times you worked out for a month. When the month is done, review how many times you worked out. Take notice of any patterns. Do it again for another month and then review. If you do this consistently over a period of time, you will be surprised how much you learn about your workout habits and how much easier it is to be consistent.

· Take some pictures. Most people dread taking "before" pictures. They don't want to be reminded of how far they have let themselves go. But, taking "Before" pictures is an extremely helpful tool. It helps you see the progress you have made over a period of time. If all you do is look in the mirror each day, you won't be able to notice the great strides you've made. The "before" picture gives you a reference that you can go back to periodically so you can see how great you're doing. Periodically take new pictures to document your progress.

· Get a partner. Apply the Wingman concept. It's a great one when it comes to your fitness routine. You're workout partner can keep you motivated and accountable to your fitness program and vice versa. You can push each other, and make sure each of you stays on track to meet your fitness goals.

I hope you find these tips useful. Good luck with that next fitness test! We're rooting for you and want to see you have your best fitness year ever!

EDITOR'S NOTE: Lt. Col. Coogan is deputy commander of the 439th OG.