How to Stay Connected to Your Fitness Goals

A trend that fitness experts call “interactive connected fitness” is all the rage these days. You’ve seen these devices at health clubs and home gyms. Indoor bikes with touchscreens that stream on-demand workouts. Full-length mirrors that, when activated, become giant LCD screens that display your reflection while you exercise.

Fitness is all about connection, for sure. But, at heart, it’s about connecting with our inner desire to realize our best self, which includes feeling good about our bodies and, well, feeling good, period.

Mathieu Knapp, Wellness and Program manager with the Healthy Life Centers at Cape Coral and Babcock Ranch, offers the reminder that when it comes to connecting with your fitness goals, the personal touch of a personal trainer, a wellness adviser, and a dietitian can be the key to achieving your fitness goals.

  • Starting off with a bang, ending with a whimper

    Knapp says that logging onto a machine at the gym or streaming on-demand home workouts that replicate the health club or studio experience is here to stay. But all that smart technology doesn’t guarantee we’ll stick with our commitment toward improving our physical health, nor does it guarantee that you will get the results you’re seeking.

    “Sometimes we get inspired by the idea of using high-tech fitness equipment to achieve our fitness goals,” he notes. “But even with the best of intentions, burnout can occur within the first few months of riding that new high-tech bike or doing squats in the mirror. We’ve all been there, at one time or another. We can lose our commitment to make regular exercise our new habit. Additionally, it’s important to remember that exercise alone is not going to get you the same results if you aren’t modifying your lifestyle.”

    Knapp’s observation rings especially true with our New Year’s resolutions to adopt a healthier lifestyle through regular physical activity. Indeed, 80 percent of our New Year’s resolutions fall by the wayside by the second week of February, according to a U.S. News & World Report. 

    The irony is that despite all our high-tech fitness and workout gadgets we have to help us get fit, as a nation, we’re more obese than ever. Since 2008, the national adult obesity rate has increased by 26 percent since 2008 to 42.4 percent, the highest ever. The percentage of people with severe obesity has almost doubled during the same time to 9.2 percent.

    “Americans spend five times more on physical activity than any other industrialized nation, yet we aren’t getting healthier. In fact, it’s getting worse,” Mathieu notes. “This tells us that it takes more than just working out at a gym or using the latest fitness technology to get healthier.” 

  • Connect with a fitness ally to reach your fitness goals

    Trainers and health experts want you to be successful and live your best life, so use their expertise, Mathieu advises.

    At Lee Health Healthy Life Centers, you can get upfront support from a team of professionals who can help you reach goals safely and effectively, Mathieu says.

    “The Healthy Life Centers have doubled down on services and support to help keep our community healthy with our Custom Health Plan,” Mathieu explains. “The service includes a health assessment, two sessions with a Registered Dietitian, one session with a movement expert, and a personalized plan with recommendations in five key areas of your health.”

    The Custom Health Plan is free, and membership is not required, he adds. “Our Custom Health Plan is a high support, high accountability process that supports members (and non-members) with a team of professionals. We’ll develop a safe and effective movement and lifestyle plan to help you reach your goals through ongoing assessment and support.”

  • The Custom Health Plan includes:

    • A Discovery Session with a wellness adviser that will clarify your goals and help you understand your ‘why,’ your health history, and present habits
    • A Health Assessment with an Exercise Specialist to determine your body composition, stress levels, health metrics, along with a body movement screening
    • A Roadmap Session with a wellness adviser who will provide personalized lifestyle recommendations about your nutrition, sleep habits, and other behaviors
    • A complimentary personal training session with an exercise specialist will lead you through individualized therapeutic drills and make exercise recommendations tailored just for you

     

    “We see a lot of members who are motivated to work out, and they want to see results quickly, only to start too fast, overwork themselves, and/or be disappointed when they don’t see results right away,” says Mathieu. “This kind of thinking sets you up for failure before you even get started. Our process can help you avoid that.”

    Mathieu says little wins, regular assessment of progress, and achieving outcomes goals are what will keep you going long term. Most importantly, experts are available to help you – connect with them!

    “Our wellness and team of experts are just as motivated as you are to help you see results, and more importantly, maintain them,” he says.

    Set goals, start slow, gather data, reassess, revise your plan, and restart the process. If you need help, seek help.

    To learn more about the Custom Health Plan, e-mail Mathieu Knapp, at mathieu.knappa@leehealth.org or call the Healthy Life Center at 239-424-3220.