Get a jump start on fitness

By: Sue Abell Mar 14, 2013

I want to start a new fitness program. What should I do?

Do some soul searching before starting a new fitness program

Before launching into an impromptu 10 km run that leaves you immobilized for a week, or signing up for a boot camp designed for triathletes, sit down with a pen and paper and get ready to do some soul searching.

Start by answering the following questions:

  • Why now? Is your head ready to do this or are you just ticked that someone noticed your jeans were too tight?
  • What are your reality-based goals? Losing 1-2 pounds a week is realistic by combining clean eating and regular exercise.
  • What type of movement do you enjoy? If the thought of being indoors on a piece of equipment makes you cry, acknowledge that and focus on the many outdoor workout options such as power walking, running, outdoor boot camps and so much more.
  • Do you want to exercise alone or with others? Needing the motivation of an instructor is common when starting anew. Or maybe you are highly driven and will cherish your quiet sweat-filled moments.
  • What obstacles do you foresee to take you off-course? Perhaps you discovered last time that scheduling workouts after work just meant not completing them and that you will need to drag yourself out of bed early or find a lunch hour option.

Your answers to these questions will be the first step in creating your new fitness plan. To make sure that you are ready to begin a new program, an okay from your doctor is an important check. So is a check-in with a personal trainer to determine the correct intensity, duration and frequency to make your goals a reality.

Sue Abell, creator of Tread Powerfully®, is a fitness instructor and personal trainer with an honours degree in English and fitness certification from Can-Fit-Pro. In 2008, she created a new indoor/outdoor fitness concept entitled Tread Powerfully®. Sue’s mantra: “INtense and OUT in an hour,” tells participants that during one of her classes, they will use a variety of deliberate and controlled movements that will engage every muscle group, increase heart rates, and still be adaptable for all fitness levels and ages. To learn more, visit