Janesville63.1°

Taking your Olympic aspirations off the couch

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GINA R. HEINE
August 22, 2008
— It’s too hot.

You don’t have time.


You don’t have the money.


When it comes to exercising, finding an excuse can be easy.


But maybe you’ve found inspiration from record-setting performances by Olympic athletes over the past few days. Take that and run with it.


The Olympics have been shown on three of the TVs at the Evansville Health Club. Owner Justin Schott said it’s been the topic of conversation as members say how impressed they are with how athletes push themselves to overcome seemingly impossible odds.


“It absolutely is a motivating factor,” he said.


So maybe you’re not after a world record or a gold medal. But area personal trainers say the key to exercising is setting a goal, scheduling it into your routine and finding the motivation that works for you. Here’s how:


-- Know your goals.


Someone just starting out should try exercising two to three days a week, said Lyla Fell, personal trainer at Riverfront Athletic Club.


Don’t overdo it. Start with 20 minutes of cardio on a treadmill, bicycle or elliptical machine. Don’t forget strength training, which is important as we age and lose muscle.


“Then of course, find something (you) would enjoy,” Fell said.


Schott always tells members “the best workout is the one that you will do.”


-- Schedule time.


“You’ve just got to make a schedule,” Fell said.


Mark it on the calendar just like you would for a doctor’s appointment.


“If you don’t schedule it in, you’re not going to do it,” she said.


For Fell, early morning is the best.


“Get it done, out of the way, so you don’t have to keep thinking about it,” she said.


With today’s busy lifestyles, the biggest excuse often is no time, Fell and Schott said.


Latest studies show it’s important to get the exercise in whenever you can—whether it’s 10-minute segments three times a day or 30 minutes altogether, Fell said.


“It’s just getting it,” she said.


Take tennis shoes to work for a walk over lunch. Or go for a jog around the baseball diamond while at your child’s game.


Whatever you do, make the best use of your time, Schott said. If you have only 20 minutes, make it intense so you get the absolute most benefit, he said.


-- Get out the door.


“Sitting around thinking about it—everybody talks themselves out of it,” Fell said.


Nike has the best slogan, she said: “Just do it.”



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