New Year is all about making a fresh start.
Forming new habits.
find a new hobby.
let go of the past
For many, these fresh starts are the beginning of their workout journey.
The motivation for traveling is a desire for more energy, a curiosity about self-defense, or the pursuit of improved physical and mental health.
For those seeking a healthy change in their life, the gym can be a healing atmosphere for change.
A local gym owner shares why she opened a gym and how her approach has helped her.
Elm Street Boxing Club
ElmSt owner Mario Antonio at the boxing gym on Capital Avenue. The Boxing Club talks about how boxing and mental health go hand in hand.
Surrounded by rows of punching bags, boxing rings, and various other gear suspended from mounts, Antonio said, “it almost makes the repetitions comfortable.” “The way you do everything in repetitive, continuous and repetitive movements gives you confidence. Especially when you compare where you started versus where you are now.It makes everyone happy. Also, I hope everyone is feeling the pressure here.”
Antonio was 15 when he first set foot in a boxing gym in East Los Angeles where he grew up.
“We grew up in a very poor gang-related neighborhood,” Antonio said after cleaning the gym before the next group of members joined him. I’ve been fighting for a long time, and I might get a little bit of discipline behind it.’
“When it came along, my whole outlook on devoting myself to a particular field changed,” he said.
Elm Street Boxing’s name is not based on its location. Corner of Capitol and Adams Streets, Elm St. Boxing’s name stands for his Elevated Mindset, a phrase that has special meaning for Antonio.
“The cool thing about these days is that talking about mental health has become much more accessible,” he said. “Because it was taboo to talk about where we lived and where we grew up.
Antonio settled in Jefferson City nearly seven years ago.
Elm St. Boxing has an open gym schedule and occasionally hosts women’s nights to allow female members, especially new members, to use the gym in a less busy and noisy location than usual. He said he understands that trying out a new gym full of people yelling instructions can be intimidating.The atmosphere.
Antonio says his gym has a wide age range of members, with people ranging from 14 to 50 coming up to him after a session and saying, ‘This is good for my mental health. for what it needs.”
Stress and anger may be the driving force behind you, or barriers in front of you may be holding you back, Antonio said.
“In any case, when everyone is in the zone, everyone goes. All the trials and tribulations, whatever is weighing you down, comes to the forefront and you are forced to deal with it. Some people are hesitant about it. That’s fine, they’ll get them the next day – or some people will decide to fight it and push it forward.”
Antonio said he tells new members that everyone starts the same way, from the rest of the gym to the world champions with posters hanging on their walls.
“They had their first days, they had their first weeks, their first months and they were like, ‘This is very different’ or ‘This is a strange way of working,'” Antonio said. said.
And it’s no secret: staying motivated to work out can be tough on anyone.
Whether it’s the chaos of a new year or the gloomy winter weather, it can be hard to fight the urge to quit too quickly.
“Prioritize it,” Antonio said with a shrug. , may take a day or two off, but we’re going to keep doing it.”
He added: “Sometimes you have bad days. It’s okay to have bad days. You can’t be Superman every day. It’s just not realistic.”
“Superman has bad days too. They weren’t in the movie,” he said with a laugh.
freestyle fitness and nutrition
For Denise Coots, owner of Freestyle Fitness and Nutrition, her desire to diet and exercise stems from a comment her husband made years ago.
“I wasn’t into fitness or nutrition until I got married,” Coutts said.
The reasoning behind the food her husband, who served in the Airborne Infantry, chose at the Alaskan canteen changed her mindset.
“I went to the burger and fries station (Chow Hall) and he was getting grilled chicken breasts and collard greens,” she said. Hey what are you doing?”
“And he says, ‘I’m jumping off a plane right now to make a living. I feel good when I eat like this.'” And he doesn’t say ‘healthy.’ did. He didn’t describe it that way. He just said, ‘Eating like this makes me feel better.’ ”
Coutts said that’s where it all started for her.
Eating healthier isn’t just for weight loss, she said. More energy and better physical and mental health are additional benefits to eating better.
For Coutts, the desire to try a healthier diet was to see if it would make her feel better, too.
“It lit my fire,” she said. “I started reading a lot. I spent a lot of time at the grocery store. I used to smoke, but I quit.” ”
Coots said he’s trying to build a workout routine by starting to walk on the treadmill.
“Then all of a sudden I started jogging,” she said. “And I tried to beat it every time. I tried jogging for maybe 10 seconds, and the next time I worked out, I tried jogging for 12 seconds. And then I slowly increased it.”
“And before long, I was running miles at a time,” she said. I could feel myself getting better and better.I felt so much better physically.”
After returning to Missouri, Coots attended MU, earning degrees in nutrition and fitness, with a minor in business. The following year she graduated with a degree in Medical Nutrition.
After working at St. Mary’s for nearly 12 years, Coutts finally fulfilled his lifelong dream of opening a gym.
“I’ve been saying this for three years now, and I still wake up every morning and pinch myself,” she said. “Like, this is what I can do as my job. And I love it. I absolutely love every part of it. I feel very lucky that it all turned out this way.” ”
Mental and physical health are strongly determined by diet and exercise, she said. She added that people could be missing out on healthy eating.
For Coots, that was the inspiration for her program called Reigniting Your Flame. Coots is aimed at women and mothers who are overwhelmed with her household chores and child care and who have lost interest in her own health and well-being, she said.
“It’s really helped a lot of women basically get their lives back and really focus,” Coutts said. I wouldn’t be able to take care of other people without it.’ This is a really big change, taking care of my family and helping me feel better mentally, physically and overall. I get to focus on taking care of myself so that I can get better.”
Staying motivated is a challenge for most people. Especially in the New Year, when the stress of the New Year holidays and parties take us away from our daily lives.
Like Antonio, Coots offered advice on creating a reasonable and manageable schedule to avoid burnout.
“I like the Seinfeld method for working out. I think it’s great,” Coutts said. You could say, ‘I work out every day,’ but some of it might just be 20 minutes of stretching.
Coutts said that’s how her program is designed: It’s a five-day workout that alternates between tough lower-body days and lighter core days.
“But let’s say you’re going to work out every day. You just take your Sharpie and cross out the completed days on your calendar. The goal is to have no blank days. That’s It’s incredibly motivating,” Coutts said.
But Coots is used to giving himself time to take breaks. Allowing exceptions once in a while is very important when trying to develop healthy habits.
“I like little exceptions, don’t you? I like to tell my customers to make an X with a black marker and a circle with a red marker,” she said.
If your goal is to exercise 5 days a week, circle the days you are most likely to stop exercising.
The remaining days are the days you aim to fill with black Xs after your workout. The goal is to fill the entire remaining month with Xs.
Positive reinforcement is important for learning to stick to new routines.
“Write down what your reward will be at the bottom of your calendar.
Coots said it’s best not to reward yourself with food every time, but if you don’t eat out often, this can be a good reward.
Hang this calendar with your notes where you’ll see it every day to stay motivated.
“I think that’s a big aspect because sometimes people create goals, write them down in a notebook, close the notebook and put it away,” she said. “It must be on your face
“I like sticky notes too. Sticky notes for goals. Sticky notes for my ‘why’.” Why am I doing this? Why am I investing in this? ”
Having a community or group to share with is also essential to holding yourself accountable.
“Of course, we had a private group, and I encouraged all 40 women in it. I said, ‘Share your goals.'”
And then build on that accountability, she said.
“Healthy habits follow each other. Healthy habits are contagious,” says Coots. “So if you exercise, you don’t want to inevitably eat something that we might consider unhealthy and ruin your results. We try to avoid the words ‘good’ and ‘bad.’ There is really no good or bad. ”
“Are there really things off limits? No! We can eat anything. If you are, great. Eat your birthday cake and enjoy it!”