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One of the most common New Year’s resolutions is to get fit and to lose weight. The owner of Canada’s largest fitness company, GoodLife Fitness’ founder and CEO David Patchell-Evans, has these simple strategies for making resolutions stick!

Start by making resolutions that are achievable, maintainable, good for your health and behaviour- oriented. If you do this and follow the 12 tips below, next New Year’s Eve you will be able to look back and toast your incredible accomplishments in 2012.

#1 Make one resolution at a time — a single focus increases your likelihood of being successful.

#2 Make a resolution that is a balance between your body type and your self-image rather than bowing to pressures from magazines and movies. Basically, there are 3 body types: tall and slim (ectomorph), round, inclined to round face and chest (endomorph) or mesomorph (larger chest, smaller hips, large shoulders). Everyone is a combination of these types but most tend to be predominantly one type. Looking and feeling your best is what is important! Get rid of thinking in absolutes. Take your inspiration from real people! Then rather than being disappointed, you will be thrilled at how well you look and feel with an energetic, healthy body.

#3 Write down your goals. Studies show that you are far more likely to achieve your goals when you write them down.

#4 List what you expect to give up (you may need to give up some small things in order to reach your goal) to get what you want. Small changes can add up to big successes! One less sugar in your coffee, parking your car for one day a week and walking around the block on your lunch hour are all small changes that can equal large gains.

#5 Enlist some expert advice/help. How about reading a great book or article about fitness or healthy eating – be sure to check out the author’s credentials! If you are choosing a fitness club, look for certified, professional staff with degrees in kinesiology, physical education and certification/training from a professional body such as the Canadian Fitness Professionals.

#6 Check out your attitude and know what motivates you. It’s as simple as deciding to be happy with each step you make. If you want to lose weight for example, congratulate yourself—each time you show up at your fitness club or each time you skip the extra butter on your popcorn at the movies!

#7 Practice your new behaviour regularly. Once it is part of your weekly routine it will become easier and you have a better chance of making it a habit.

#8 Don’t go at it too hard! Remember only 30 minutes of physical activity three times a week has a significant impact on how you look and feel.

#9 Get friends and family on-side with your resolution — it’s a great way to strengthen your resolve and you’ll have your own cheering section. Telling someone about your goal and writing it down is a great success strategy. Also, this could help you identify a great workout buddy, so that you can work toward to your goals together.

#10 Take a holistic approach to your health and wellness. Develop a plan that includes activity, good nutrition and a mental/spiritual component like doing yoga once a week to help alleviate stress.

#11 Have Fun! If you aren’t having fun, you won’t stick with it, so make sure you are staying active by doing things that you love. Dance, play tennis, go for a walk with friends, hop on the treadmill, or attend a group exercise class, whatever makes you smile and brings you enjoyment!

#12 Do All of the Above!

Remember, often you don’t notice your changes as much as others do, so take a picture of yourself at the beginning of your resolution and then every couple of weeks as you progress toward your goal. And be graceful at accepting the compliments when you get noticed!

To get started with your GoodLife Fitness membership please call 1-800-363-9736 or visit goodlifefitness.com/carp

For a full list of club locations, visit goodlifefitness.com