By Tim Hlivia | For Weekender

For the Health of It: Keep your fitness routine strong in the last month of 2015

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It is often said that it’s not how you start something but rather how you finish it that really counts. While the road to success is often paved with good intentions, sometimes we fall short in our quest to succeed.

The reasons we fail may have nothing to do with ourselves personally, but rather how we approach a task or how we view it. Before starting something new, be it a fat loss plan, an exercise, a new nutrition strategy or even something unrelated to fitness, keep your expectations realistic.

If you don’t conquer something the first time you set sail, do not become discouraged. While it may be easier to quit, fall back into old habits, or give up. instead, use this phrase as “leverage” and demand excellence from yourself. Excelling in something doesn’t need to mean being number one, it just means doing your best at whatever it is you want to do.

I believe most people fail to give it their best. You may have legitimate reasons for doing so, but analyze those reasons and make sure they are not excuses. Be brutally honest with yourself and don’t allow laziness to make its way into the equation.

As we start December and the end of 2015, finish strong. Don’t allow yourself to let these weeks pass you by. Don’t wait until January to begin your journey. “Clear your mind of can’t” (spoken by Samuel Johnson) and believe in the power of optimistic thinking. With one month left in 2015 it is still possible to drop those pesky pounds. Recalibrate and refocus. Finishing strong will help you end the year well and there is nothing more satisfying knowing you did your best.

Along with ending the month and year with a solid performance, I always recommend ending your workouts with the same vigor and intensity. I finish most of my workouts with something called a “finisher”’ for obvious reasons. A “finisher” is to be done at the very end of your workout, but before your recovery drink. Here is one I routinely do and suggest to my clients:

10 kettlebell swings – 10 jumping jacks, 9 kettlebell swings – 9 jumping jacks, 8 kettlebell swings – 8 jumping jacks, etc.

Perform this sequence and work your way down to one kettlebell swing and one jumping jack.

Finishing exercises are a great way to to increase cardiovascular fitness without the muscle wasting effects on traditional “cardio” routines.

Tim Hlivia is a trainer at Leverage Fitness Studio. Need help getting started on fitness? He will be happy to take the time and sit down with you and talk. 570-338-2386.

By Tim Hlivia | For Weekender

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Tim Hlivia is a trainer at Leverage Fitness Studio. Need help getting started on fitness? He will be happy to take the time and sit down with you and talk. 570-338-2386.