By COSHANDRA DILLARD
I’m guessing people are eagerly working on their 2013 resolutions — financial, career or health goals. Wanting to lose weight or get in better shape remains at the top of the list of New Year’s resolutions.
Gyms are often crowded at the first of the year, but by Valentine’s Day, attendance drops off.
I purposefully haven’t written a predictable “time-to-set-your-weight-loss-goal-and-get-in-shape-for-real” column. My perspective is why wait? Any time is a good time to get in shape, shed pounds or improve your health enough to get off certain medications. There’s nothing magical about Jan. 1 or a random Monday.
Now that we’re all past the New Year hallmark, let’s get on track and stay there.
Staying on track seems to be a problem. It’s easy to lose a little weight in the beginning. In the beginning, you’re so on fire about fitness that you join a gym, buy equipment and hire a trainer. You toss out all junk food and load the refrigerator with leafy greens and other vegetables.
Then the fitness routine gets old. You begin craving certain foods. You’re too tired to workout and the new fitness equipment and clothes start collecting dust.
The key is changing your mindset about fitness and making changes that you’ll be comfortable with for life.
Break down that big goal of losing weight into tiny action steps. Without having specific goals an action plan, it’s like saying, “I’m going to build a house,” without having a blueprint.
A great place to get inspiration for creating your health blueprint is weight-loss blogs or Facebook pages. There’s nothing more inspiring than to lean about the successes of someone who’s overcome similar struggles. From motivating memes to recipes and notes of wisdom, these social sites can provide that motivating push when you don’t feel like thinking about anything healthy.
Here are a few worth mentioning:
- Refusing to FAIL (Janette’s Weight Loss Journey): This Facebook page was created to share South Carolina resident Janette Colantonio’s weight-loss journey. Once at 400 pounds, she has so far lost more than 200 through a healthy diet and exercise. Her motivation point was getting pulled over for not wearing a seat belt. The reason? She couldn’t buckle it. She’s since had television appearances, including CBS’s “The Doctors.” Learn about her story at tinyurl.com/janettes.
- God’s Garden of Eden: This Facebook site rallies around the “food as medicine” concept, providing holistic tips and recipes. Visit www.facebook.com/GodsGardenOfEden.
- Eat Smart and Workout Hard: This Facebook page has information on fitness and clean eating. They conduct boot camps online and intense fitness challenges. Visit www.facebook.com/workouthard
- Black Girls Run!: There’s a misconception that black women don’t run. This organization, created in 2009, is gaining popularity. The goal is to encourage black women to practice a healthy lifestyle and encourage more of them to run. Visit www.facebook.com/BlackgirlsRUN and www.blackgirlsrun.com.
- Sparkpeople: SparkPeople is the world’s largest free online weight loss and healthy living community. There are free diet plans, weight trackers, blogs, articles, videos, workout plans and more. Visit www.facebook.com/SparkPeople and www.sparkpeople.com.
- Fit to the Finish: Diane Carbonell is the author of “150 Pounds Gone Forever.” The mother of seven is an advocate for healthy weight loss after losing more than 150 pounds. At 300 pounds, she was morbidly obese for 10 years before taking charge of her health. Her blog and Facebook page provides health tips, recipes and motivation. Visit www.facebook.com/FitToTheFinish and www.fittothefinish.com.
- Faith Fitness and Nutrition: This Facebook page is a faith-based platform for fitness-minded people dedicated to healthy eating. Visit www.facebook.com/godinfitness.
SHARE: Do you have a health and fitness or weight loss blog? Let us know and we can spotlight you in this section. Contact Coshandra Dillard at