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Five simple tips for getting fit in 2017

Jan. 10, 2017 - BOSTON, MA. Marino Center at Northeastern University on Jan. 10, 2017. Photo by Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University

Getting healthy and staying fit are traditionally among the most popular New Year’s resolutions.

Here, we offer up five tips for building a fitter physique in 2017, with insight from the alumni behind Mobility Pre­scrip­tion, a per­sonal fit­ness con­sulting firm.

‘If man made it, don’t eat it’

If you want to lose weight, focus on eating whole foods, like fruit, steak, and sprouted grains. “It’s very difficult to lose weight if you eat fast food or pre-packaged meals,” says Ryan Beauchesne, BHS’13, the founder and CEO of Mobility Prescription. “If man made it, don’t eat it.”

If you want to bulk up, but find it difficult to consume enough calories on a daily basis to gain weight, try adding a so-called “super shake” to your diet. As Jimmy Heim, DPT’16, the company’s head fitness consultant, puts it, “Shakes are a great way to sneak in extra calories.”

‘Set a timer and bust your tail’

According to Beauchesne, reaching your fitness-related goals can likely be achieved by completing three to four moderate workouts per week.

If you’re pressed for time, “set a timer for 20 to 30 minutes, turn your phone to airplane mode, and bust your tail on a circuit of squats, lunges, and pushups.”

For an aerobic workout, try high intensity interval training or HIIT, on an elliptical machine. If you don’t have access to equipment, try HIIT sprints.

Listen to Albert Einstein

When you hit a workout plateau, recall these words of wisdom, generally attributed to Albert Einstein: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”

As Beauchesne puts it, “You need to go into your workouts with a desire to beat your last workout in some way. If you continue to perform the same workout over and over again, your body will not change.”

For weightlifting beginners looking to get stronger in short order, Heim recommends reading the book Muscle Gaining Secrets 2.0 by strength and conditioning specialist Jason Ferruggia.

 

It’s very difficult to lose weight if you eat fast food or pre-packaged meals. If man made it, don’t eat it.”
— Ryan Beauchesne, BHS’13

Track your swole

Write out your fitness goals and review them daily. Find a friend who will hold you accountable and meet with him once a week to track your progress.

“Consistency is a habit built over time,” Heim says. “You either build it in the right direction or the wrong direction with each decision you make.”

Consider framing exercise in a positive light, as a critical part of a healthy and productive life: “If you look at working out as a consistent part of your life that affords you opportunities to stay healthy and do the things you love,” says Beauchesne, “then long-term consistency becomes more realistic.”

App it up

One of Heim and Beauchesne’s favorite health and wellness apps is Breathe+, which bills itself as a “beautiful new way to visualize your breathing.” As Heim puts it, “Breathe+ is a great app to manage the stress of life and help move your body to a more relaxed state.”

On the fitness side, they like the Fitbit app, which allows them to track the intensity of their workouts based on calories burned. “The number of calories isn’t particularly important,” says Beauchesne, “but it is indicative of your overall effort, which can help you gauge how hard you’re working.”