Make Your Health a Priority this New Year

Getting in shape is one of the most common New Year’s resolutions. Whether you want to improve your physical and mental health, lose weight, feel stronger or have more energy, exercise can help achieve your goals in 2022.

Despite great intentions, many people fail to achieve their fitness resolutions, largely because they set goals that are too broad or undefined. For example, setting the goal to “get in shape” can mean vastly different things to different people. You have a better possibility of achieving goals that are specific and quantifiable, and which allow you to clearly define and measure your success.

For example, you can turn your desire to get healthier into an actionable goal by finding a 10-minute exercise routine that you do every other day. No matter which routine you choose, you can make significant improvement with a consistent approach. You may wish to take a 30-day challenge to stay with this routine, and then choose a different workout each month of the year.

Here is a way to get moving with a quick 10-minute workout, courtesy of the CampusWell editorial team at Mount Saint Mary’s University in Los Angeles. Short duration workouts are effective and efficient, provided you move frequently and quickly while maintaining the proper technique. It is also important to follow the correct work-to-rest ratio.

A short duration workout challenges the cardiovascular system, improves awareness and increases the rate of metabolism. In the following routine, for every 30 seconds of activity there is at least 30 seconds of rest. An additional 60 seconds of rest separates each round of four exercises. Set aside 10 minutes a day to complete these exercises three to four times per week, and see how much progress you make toward your new fitness goals!

Workout Routine, Repeat Three Times

Jumping jacks – 30 seconds
Stand with feet together and arms at your sides. Hop your feet apart and simultaneously swing your arms overhead. Hop your feet back together and swing your arms back to your sides. These will act as a warm-up by raising your heart rate and preparing the body for activity. Remember, complete as many repetitions as possible with proper technique in the allotted time.

Rest – 30 seconds

Knee-touch crunches – 30 seconds
Lie on your back with knees bent and feet flat on the ground. With arms extended, your hands should be about six inches away from your knees. Lift your shoulders off the ground by flexing your abdominal muscles to touch the top of your knees with your hands.

Rest – 30 seconds

Basic burpees – 30 seconds
From standing, bend over and bring each hand to the floor. Step back to the plank position. In this position, your hands and feet are on the floor with hips neutral so that your back forms a straight line. Step in with both feet and return to the standing position. If you become light-headed, slow down and remember to breathe. This keeps the heart rate up and challenges both the upper and lower extremities.

Rest – 30 seconds

Incline pushups – 30 seconds
Place your hands on an inclined surface one to three feet off the floor. The higher the incline, the easier the pushup. Using a stable chair, bench, or stairs is optimal. Feet remain on the ground. Hips should be neutral so that you form a straight line from the shoulders to the feet. Bend your arms to lower your chest. Your arms should bend to about 90 degrees before pressing to bring your body back to the starting position.

Rest – 90 seconds

Finally, if you do not already exercise or have underlying health concerns or conditions, you may need to consult with your doctor before starting a new exercise routine. Health experts suggest you talk with your doctor if you have heart disease, type 1 or 2 diabetes, kidney disease, arthritis, cancer or high blood pressure, among other health conditions.

If you are unsure of your health status, have multiple health problems or are pregnant, it is always best to work with your doctor on finding an exercise program that is right for you. Getting the right health advice is the first step on your path to achieving a healthier lifestyle.


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