Procrastinating all year may have worked out in your favor this time. Just about every gym is offering a New Year’s special, or waiving or discounting costly, inexplicable initiation fees to reel in new members looking to fulfill their weight loss resolutions.
Even Equinox, The Best Gym Ever (imo) is waiving their initiation fees. If they weren’t $150/mo, I’d consider it. Planet Fitness is still the best deal in town at just $10/mo, but as I’ve repeatedly stated here, you do get what you pay for.
Around this time of year it’s essential to keep multiple memberships because every facility will be packed. Try working out first thing in the morning or very late at night to avoid the flock of newcomers.
Here’s to a great 2012!
Apparently, joining the corporate weight loss challenge, or announcing on your Facebook and Twitter feeds that you’re trying to drop a few pounds will sabotage your sexy. It’s an interesting revelation, as I myself tend to be a doer. Running a site like this, I probably should let folks in on the daily process, but I do think once you ink a thought, it holds you accountable in ways you may not be prepared for.
Take yesterday for instance. I had a great ride around Brooklyn–mostly for cost-effective commute purposes, admittedly, and also because I can get just about anywhere faster on my bike over the bus and sometimes the train. The health benefits are a plus, I enjoy it, and my legs are looking better than I expected.
But then I got hungry. Instead of eating a salad like one would expect, I headed to KFC and ordered a crispy strip combo with potato wedges (and a Diet Pepsi, of course). It’d been a while, and I just wanted to eat something that tasted good even if it’ll slowly kill me. I don’t really want to have to answer questions, or have a discussion as to why I’m eating fast food when I’m watching my weight. Sure we talk about it here, but in my daily life, folks aren’t really in on this conversation. Just do what you have to do, and STFU about it.
There are a number of ways to avoid this phenomenon.
“One is simple — you can keep your mouth shut,” Gollwitzer says. “Another one is to form different kinds of intentions, not only say what you want to do but also when, where and how you want to do it.”
Such planning helps create situational action control, he explains. When you find yourself at the gym before work, the situation you mentally mapped out controls your behavior instead of your intention to exercise more.
The third way, Gollwitzer says, is to tell only one or two people who hold power over you (metaphorically) so that they help you stick to your intentions. [SOURCE]
I posted about this before, but it seemed to fall on deaf ears, or maybe nobody cares. My tweets were all a twitter yesterday, when people found out I only pay $10/mo for my Planet Fitness membership. When? How? Is the deal still on? Can I get the same thing?
Of course you can. Planet Fitness is still running the same deal that I posted about in May. There’s also a $20/mo option for people interested in all club privileges.
Planet Fitness also boasts unlimited tanning, massage chairs, and free personal training with their premium membership. None of those things are of interest to me, or worth the cost of doubling my membership fee, but if you’re in desperate need of a tan after a good workout, now you know where to go.
I’m about to head to Groupon to search for deals on fitness classes, but here are some articles to occupy you in the meantime:
How Exercise Can Strengthen the Brain [NYT]
How to Fend off Food Cravings [EH]
11 Foods for Healthy Bones [Health]
Train Better: 10 Exercise Machines to Avoid [WH]
Looking for a Fitness Buddy? Get a Dog [Reuters]
Diet and Depression: Can Food Help Fight the Blues? [ABC.au]
The New York City Department of Parks & Recreation offers free fitness classes in all five boroughs through their Shape Up NYC program. You can search classes by borough, zip code, and even skill level. Popular classes like yoga and zumba are available.
There are classes offered everyday of the week, and no registration or membership is required. Just show up to shape up!
So you’ve finally hit your goal weight, and you look amazing! What now?
While you’re well aware of what type of commitment it takes to reach your goal, it also takes a huge commitment to stay there.
A new study shows that using “rewards” and “reminders” can help you maintain your weight loss.
The researchers found two techniques that helped with weight maintenance (but not necessarily weight loss): reminding yourself why you need to control your weight, and rewarding yourself for sticking to a diet and exercise plan. [SOURCE]
Here are some excellent tips via FitSugar:
Reward yourself. Scheduling rewards when you are maintaining weight loss is different than when you are losing weight. Going shopping for a cute outfit once you’ve reached a weight-loss milestone, for example, is easy to justify, but how do you reward yourself for just following your normal lifestyle routine? Don’t forget that regularly rewarding yourself for maintaining your fitness regimen is important. Find a way to reward yourself if you hit your target number of workouts for the week or tie in something you love with your exercise plan. Try only allowing yourself to watch mindless TV during or after a workout, for example, or scheduling a fun weekend activity after a long week of gym sessions to help keep you motivated.
Remind yourself. Once you hit your goal weight, it can be easy to think that a splurge is in order. But the study found that those who reminded themselves about why they needed to control their weight were more successful in keeping it off. While you shouldn’t have to forgo all indulgences in order to stay at your goal weight, try reminding yourself of the consequences of straying off track before ordering the most unhealthy thing on the menu or skipping a run in favor of couch time.
A recent study has shown that life expectancy in hundreds of counties, mostly in the South, has decreased. Obesity and smoking have proven to be contributing factors.
The study found that life expectancy for women fell significantly in 702 of the nation’s more than 3,100 counties. The largest declines – by nearly 2 years – were in Mississippi’s Madison County, near Jackson, and the adjacent Hughes and Okfuskee counties in eastern Oklahoma.
Life expectancy dropped for men in 251 counties, by more than 2 years in Kentucky’s Perry County in Appalachia and Mississippi’s Madison.
In 158 counties, it dropped for both men and women. In some cases, counties with plummeting life expectancy were next to or very near counties with rising longevity.
There is some debate about why life expectancy estimates rose and fell more in some counties than others.
Murray and his colleagues said they checked issues like poverty or racial makeup, and those didn’t explain the difference. They believe high rates of obesity, smoking and other preventable health problems may be main reasons. [SOURCE]
Take care of yourselves people! What you choose to put in your body may slowly be killing you!
I was discussing my plans to upgrade my current bicycle with a couple of friends when one of them said he wishes he could ride a bike but can’t. I thought maybe he had never learned, or had some physical limitations, but his answer was “If anyone from the hood saw me on a bicycle, they’d think I fell off.”
Huh? I’d expect that anyone that self-conscious would be even more inclined to hop on a bike. They’re great for recreation, fitness, and for some of us—yes! A commute!
Every bike isn’t pink with streamers and double baskets! And unless you’re a drug dealer or a child, BMX bikes should really be out of the question.
But a good bike, one that’s comfortable, reliable, and sturdy, is a much better investment than the $104/mo many of us have been shelling out to the MTA.
Here in NYC, the city has slowly but surely been integrating bike lanes throughout the boroughs, making it much easier to find safe routes and bike parking. For me, it’s just silly to drive and wasteful to take public transportation everyday.
My commute to work is approximately 15 minutes via train—if there’s no delay, 30 minutes by bus, and 20 minutes on my bike. If I drive I spend 30 minutes looking for parking before I cave and end up paying for it. Why am I wasting my money?
In regards to my pending upgrade, I’d originally limited my budget to no more than $200, but after calculating the cost savings (vehicle/public transportation) over time, I feel comfortable exceeding that and getting something that will outlast my riding years.
Avoiding Target, Toys-R-Us, or any other general retailer, I’ve been going about this search by going to bike shops where the associates are trained to fit people to the best bikes for their body types. I’ve sat, stretched, spread, and rode. My department store Schwinn will do for now, but I’m ready for the big time!!
So if you see me in the hood on a Surly…..holler!!
Planet Fitness is currently running a $10 down, $10/mo promotion (normally $20 down) for new members. The offer expires tomorrow, but it’s a great alternative to the bloated Bally’s contracts, or inflated Crunch and Equinox prices.
As with all things, you do get what you pay for, so while Planet Fitness isn’t the sexiest gym in all the land, it’s certainly worth the $10/mo, and then some.
Members interested in all club privileges can put the same $10 down, and pay $20/mo for unlimited personal training, free use of the massage chairs, and unlimited tanning among other random perks. There’s no excuse good enough to avoid the gym this summer!