Monday, May 12, 2003

Personal Trainer

Choose exercise star, then supporting cast

By Dave Patania

Question: I exercise but I don't think consistently enough to get the results that I truly want. I hit the gym twice per week but feel I could do more. Any ideas or cool things to do?

Answer: Your goals are identified but the means of achieving them aren't.

Try using what I call a Fitness Cast of Characters with each character representing a different activity. It is a silly analogy but works well for many of my clients and trainers.

First, choose your two leading activities that you are passionate about and more apt to do on a consistent basis, then choose your supporting cast of activities to accent the two leading activities.

For example, I have a client who is an avid runner who chose running and cycling as her two lead characters and then chose weight training, Pilates, yoga and swimming as her supporting cast.

She really wants to keep improving her running and cycling so she uses strength training to increase her strength and muscular endurance, the Pilates and yoga for flexibility and strength and swimming for endurance and variation.

On days when she isn't motivated to do one of her leading activities, she can participate in one of her supporting activities and still stay on track with her goals.

She really enjoyed her search for her supporting activities because she said she met a lot of new and interesting people. The variation is refreshing, yet still keeps her focused on her goals without burnout normally associated with most programs.

This format also helps make fitness an everyday part of life because it teaches you to be flexible and that consistency and variation is the key to any successful endeavor.

Knowing you have options on days when you don't feel like working out is priceless. Her consistency is at an all-time high, her conditioning levels keep increasing and more importantly, she is happy.

Contct personal trainer Dave Patania by e-mail:

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