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  • Writer's pictureSally Kalksma

How to Focus on Fitness Goals during the Holidays.

I hope to feel like that Cheetah in my new sneakers, or at least in my mind.

My new running sneakers just arrived and I feel like a kid on Christmas morning. I can't wait to go outside and play with my new toys—I will be loving on them hard because I just started a new training regimen to help me stay on top of my fitness goals even as the season of feasts and indulgence are coming faster than you can say happy holidays!

I agreed to begin this new workout after much discussion over many happy hour cocktails... My brother-in-law, who is a National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) certified trainer, put together a new program to be completed three times a week. I have been incorporating this new regimen into my existing workout routine. Talk about a commitment!

What doesn’t belong in this picture?

It can be difficult to stick to any new fitness routine and keep up a healthy diet any day of the week, even for seasoned athletes. Add in the holidays with schedules filling up and over-commitments everywhere it can really get overwhelming—especially when your sister stops by on DAY ONE of your new workout right in the middle of the booty band slider workout to drop off a cute little white pumpkin and a bag of homemade chocolate-dipped pretzels!

To make matters worse, they were not just any chocolate-dipped pretzels, but those coated in different candies including Reese's Pieces, my favorite! How can a trainer's wife do this? Was it a test of willpower? I accepted the gift from my sister Jo and put them on the kitchen counter while reminding myself of my current fitness goals. I want to be back at my racing weight of 125 pounds by April 2022. Maybe by then, buildings will be back open to stair climbing and I can do tower races again.

I completed my workout including the new regimen Jo's husband prescribed. The whole time I thought about the delicious pretzels on the kitchen counter but I persevered. After my workout, I ate three of the delicious Reese's coated pretzels. It was too hard to say no—my willpower failed me! Did I mention my sister, Jo, is a successful "Noomer" who lost 10 pounds and has kept it off on the Noom diet? I know what she was thinking, "give them to my little sister so I don't eat them". Typical big sister!

Photos of my idol hang in my weight room.

To be successful in any goal, even if people and things are attempting to sabotage you, even if they are delectable chocolate-covered pretzels, you must remain positive and not beat yourself up. The better your attitude, the better your performance, and the closer you'll be to accomplishing your goal. When we have a negative outlook, we lose motivation and may decide the goal isn't attainable or worth it. Our perception of self-worth is diminished. Don't let the chocolate-covered pretzels, or the late-night shopping, or holiday parties keep you from meeting your fitness goals. The only thing in your way is yourself and an expectation of perfection—though sometimes I think I'd like to be, come on we all do!

I'm inviting you all to follow me while I take on this latest challenge. We can help keep each other positive, motivated, and closer to our goals as we head toward the new year. I can hear my new sneakers calling me now!

— Sally


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