Maui mamas baby wearing exercise

Did you make a New Year’s Resolution to lose weight or to get in shape? How many years have you set the same resolution only to have given it up by February? You’re certainly not alone. We all have good intentions but life seems to get in the way. Following are 8 tips to get you started on the path to exercise.

1. Set Goals
What does it mean when you say you want to exercise or lose weight? People don’t set specific or powerful enough goals for themselves, and very often those goals that are set are unrealistic. Try setting S.M.A.R.T. (SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE, ACHIEVABLE, REALISTIC AND TIMELY) goals.

2. Fit It In To Your Lifestyle
Most people tend to do too much, too hard, too fast. This year, find activities that will easily fit in to your lifestyle. Try to make exercise non-negotiable, just like taking a shower, brushing your teeth, etc. In fact, book exercise on your calendar just as you would any other appointment.

3. Find Things You Enjoy
Don’t like the gym? Then don’t go! There are a million ways to get fit. Find activities that you enjoy. Do what you enjoy and you’ll succeed.

4. Reward Yourself
It is human nature to strive to achieve things when there’s a reward at the end. Set up some positive reinforcers for yourself such as a massage, a new outfit or even just a day to relax. Here’s an idea: Pay yourself every time you workout, at the end of the month, use that money to treat yourself to something.

5. Sign up for an event
If you are a walker, biker, runner or swimmer, there are tons of events from 5k’s to marathons that you can sign up for, like the Women Helping Women’s Fun Run this March. If you sign up for an event, it helps keep you on track with your training because you know what you have to achieve and by when. Check out Valley Isle Road Runners at virr.com to find a local event that suits you!

6. Get A Workout Pal
It is so easy to skip workouts when you only have yourself to hold accountable. People with workout partners are far more likely to stick to their routine. For example, try a class like Stroller Strides Maui, workout outdoors with your keiki, friends and other likeminded mothers!

7. Get Your Family Involved
Create an active family. It will encourage you and your family to live a more active lifestyle. Try beach walking, swimming at the community and natural pools, hiking along the waterfalls or forests. Enjoy Maui!

8. Stay Motivated
Set The Mood. You’re more likely to stick with an exercise routine if it inspires you. For instance, consider buying new exercise clothes or an mp3 player so that you have motivating music to pump you up!

Image Credit: Rebecca Moses

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Cailin Goodier is a Licensed Clinician who has worked with mothers and families for over ten years. A graduate of UH Manoa's School of Social Work, she has worked for Imua Family Services and lead Stroller Strides Maui

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