New year brings new fitness goals
This time of year, you’re likely to hear a common New Year’s refrain: “I’m going to lose weight…. I’m going to get fit… I’m going to get into those new jeans if it kills me.”
Gyms and fitness centers benefit from those promises as they work to help people accomplish their goals. Memberships spike at this time of year, according to Annie Torres, assistant service manager at 24 Hour Fitness in Cathedral City.
“We offer classes for anyone at any age, no matter what level of fitness,” Torres said. The classes include weight training, circuit training, Zumba (Latin dance), yoga, spinning and kick boxing. “Silver Sneakers” is strength training for people 65 and older to increase strength and keep balance while “Body Pump,” a very intense cardio and weight training combination, helps younger folks tone up.
“Losing weight—or reaching your ideal weight — is always a big motivation,” Torres said. In some cases, “doctors have told people to get fit,” which is a huge motivator. “Changing eating habits alone isn’t always enough,” she added.
Men generally want to get toned with bigger, more defined muscles, unless they are diabetic or have heart problems. Women are more into weight loss and more into cardio workouts to burn fat and burn calories.
Torres’s advice, when starting a fitness program, is “Don’t overdo it right away. Burnout is a big factor. Exercise three or four times a week, not every day or it gets boring. Use a variety of classes and change routine. Take rest days.”
“We inform new clients how long it will take to get results and can set up a program with a fitness trainer,” she said.
According to a recent survey by 24 Hour Fitness, a higher percentage of young adults are committed to regular exercise in the coming year than in 2010. More than four of five (81 percent) adults ages 25-34 expect to be more physically active in 2011; this figure dips to 73 percent for adults 35-44 and again to 65 percent for adults 55-64.
The survey of 1,052 adults age 18 and older across the U.S. revealed that “losing weight (36 percent) ranks as the greatest motivator to exercise regularly, followed closely by appearance improvements (35 percent).”
An advantage of 24 Hour Fitness is the month-to-month membership with no contract, which can start at any time, Torres said, and members have access to all clubs nationwide. The club is open 364 days a year; closed on Christmas day.