Three reasons why now is the perfect time to make your fitness resolutions – The Philadelphia Inquirer

Summer is a better time to kick-start a healthier lifestyle than the beginning of January: The weather is warmer, and outdoor activities are endless.
Why are fitness resolutions reserved for the beginning of a new year? After months of consuming calorie-dense holiday dishes, it’s no surprise that getting in shape always lands at the top of the New Year’s resolution list.
But the dead of winter, when it’s cold, dark, and easy to lose motivation, isn’t an ideal time to embark on ambitious fitness goals.
Summer is a better time to kick-start a healthier lifestyle. The weather is warmer, outdoor activities are endless, and with the kids home on summer break, you can embark on this new wellness journey as a family. By revving up your fitness routine now, you’ll never have to make another New Year’s fitness-related resolution again.
Here are the top three reasons to fire up your fitness goals now.
The fall season marks some of the most calorically catastrophic days of the entire year, between Halloween treats, Thanksgiving feasts, and December holiday gatherings. Once January arrives, reversing the damage and returning to your preholiday weight can be an arduous task.
» READ MORE: 5 self-care tips for parents who need a break this summer
A simple solution for avoiding holiday weight gain is to prevent it from happening in the first place. If you get into the routine of exercising regularly and eating healthy now, your body will be better equipped to handle temptations come fall. When healthy habits become a lifestyle choice rather than a dreaded obligation, or punishment for overeating, you’re less likely to succumb to bad behaviors.
Your exercise environment can make all the difference when it comes to achieving wellness goals. During the dark, dreary days of winter, it’s challenging to get motivated — especially if your workout consists of being a prisoner to the treadmill inside a cold, fluorescent-lit gym. But when the weather is welcoming and pleasant, exercise becomes more exciting. Such activities as playing tennis, swimming, and basketball make fitness fun because you don’t feel as if you’re exercising. And when you enjoy your workout, your odds of making exercise a habit are greater.
Another bonus of outdoor exercise is the profound physical and mental benefits of nature. Most Americans are deficient in vitamin D during the winter, which is a contributing factor to such conditions as seasonal depression. Vitamin D, which is absorbed through the skin from the sun’s rays, is essential for the absorption of calcium and phosphorus, as well as immune system function. It also helps fight disease and improve your mood.
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With the kids home from school, the month of August creates a great opportunity for families to spend more time together. And one of the best activities to bond over is healthy living. You may not always realize it, but kids’ actions and patterns tend to mimic those of their parents. So when healthy behaviors are established at home, such as stocking the fridge with wholesome foods, cutting down on screen time, eating as a family, and making daily exercise a priority, your children are more likely to emulate those habits.
Making healthy choices a priority in your home can go a long way in preventing obesity and obesity-related diseases.
August is special because it catches the kids right before the school year starts. By establishing a wellness strategy now, you can motivate them to stay more active year-round with such exercise endeavors as joining an after-school sports team; going for a post-dinner family walk; or, for college-bound young adults, engaging in healthier habits during the college semester.
Ashley Blake Greenblatt is a certified personal trainer and wellness coach in South Jersey. Learn more about her virtual training program at


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