New year has been and gone and if that includes your new year’s resolution, you are not alone. In fact, research from the University of Stranton highlighted than only 8% of people who made one, reached their goal. In fact, a poll conducted by BUPA found that less than 50% of those who made a resolution, lasted only 1 month.

The thing is, changing long life habits is tough and part of the problem lies in that we set our goals too high initially and therefore they can be unrealistic. We want to go from couch to Marathon in 6 weeks; completely overhaul our current diet and become a 3-times-per-week at the gym kind-of person.

In my capacity as an exercise professional who works daily with people who are struggling to get started, I have however found a non-intimidating and extremely effective method to help people reach their goals with the innovative actilife programme developed by Life Leisure. By combining a physical activity tracker with an online coach and web portal, it has reported an astounding 83% of participants becoming more active after just 12 weeks.

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If you’re just starting or wanting to become more active, then here are a few hints to get you moving in the right direction.

  • Start small. Most people can usually find 5 – 10 minutes of spare time in their day no matter how busy they are. 10 minutes every day adds up to over an hour of exercise every week.
  • Yep that’s right, putting one foot in front of the other has many proven health benefits and is FREE! You don’t need any equipment apart from comfortable shoes and clothes and it can be fitted around your day to day life.

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  • Think about tracking your activity. Whether this is via a mobile App or a physical activity tracker, having something to aim for and to track your progress can really help. An even more effective method would be combining this with coaching either remotely or face-face, as well demonstrated by the actilife programme.
  • Make yourself be active! Our lives are now designed to make things easy but this means less active too. Take the stairs where possible, park your car further away in the staff car park and walk to the local shops rather than driving. If you’re wearing a physical activity tracker, you’ll be surprised at how much these small changes make a big difference.

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All the above may sound great but if you, like many others, are struggling in taking the first, then I would personally recommend the innovative actilife programme. It’s the combination of a real life wellness coach and the ability to track your own activity levels which helps achieve results, as highlighted by a recent study in the American College of Health and Fitness Journal.