Health & Fitness

Five Tips for Staying on a Healthy Track

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Getting in shape and staying healthy this winter doesn’t have to be a chore. Lindsay Boeke, at Centegra Health Bridge, in Crystal Lake and Huntley, shares a few easy ideas.

Lindsay Boeke, personal trainer and fitness director at Centegra Health Bridge Fitness Center, assists client Tanya Tanzillo with strength training.

Lindsay Boeke, personal trainer and fitness director at Centegra Health Bridge Fitness Center, assists client Tanya Tanzillo with strength training.

Lindsay Boeke is passionate about health. As a personal trainer and fitness director for Centegra Health System’s Centegra Health Bridge Fitness Center, Boeke knows the importance of staying well. The fitness center, with locations in Crystal Lake and Huntley, offers a variety of programs including tennis, swimming, group fitness classes and personal training.

“Personally, I’ve had family members affected by serious health issues,” she says. “It’s always been important for me to be invested in health and wellness. I find that exercise can be a form of medicine. Nothing motivates me more than seeing my clients achieve success when it comes to healthy living.”

Boeke practices what she preaches. A former college tennis player, she now spends her time training for marathons – she recently ran the Chicago Marathon. The key to any fitness program is to make it enjoyable. “We won’t get there unless we make it fun,” she says.

Here, Boeke suggests five tips for making fitness an important – and fun – part of your daily routine.

1. Set a Goal
It doesn’t have to be specific, but setting at least one goal will keep you motivated.

“The goal could be walking up a flight of stairs, lifting your grandchildren or running a marathon,” Boeke says. “You can set more than one, but always remember your original goal. That will be your motivation for when things get tough. We all have frustrating days when it comes to exercise.”

2. Tell Somebody
By sharing your goals with your spouse, friend or co-worker, you’re holding yourself accountable.

“You don’t have to broadcast it to the world, but you need a support system of at least one person,” Boeke says. “Accountability means everything. By telling someone, you have support when you need it the most.” Joining a running group or a fitness class are other ways of holding yourself accountable.

3. Keep it Simple
Avoid overcomplicating your fitness program. “You don’t have to follow all of the rules,” Boeke says. “Sometimes, we get caught up in doing it perfectly or trying to compete with other people we see working out in the gym. That’s when we tend to feel like a failure. What matters most is that you’re moving. It’s important to be safe, of course, but also to have fun with exercise.”

4. Track Your Success
Make sure to record your workouts, which can be as simple as writing down the days you worked out, what exercises you performed and what you ate.

“You can write it down in your calendar or download an app such as Fitbit,” Boeke says. “The technology is remarkable, but some people find it cumbersome. Use whatever works best for you.”

5. Make it Fun
If it’s not fun, Boeke says, it’s time to change up your routine. That’s what one of her clients did during marathon training.

“She was doing strength training four days a week, and running three days a week,” Boeke says. “But she was just going through the motions, so we switched things up, by taking away a day of strength training and a day of running and replacing them with swimming. Now, she feels revived. It’s put her in a different environment, and she enjoys it.”

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