“I will, in 2012 . . . “ So goes the annual making of New Year’s resolutions. That is, promises made to correct what people believe to be weaknesses. The problem is New Year’s resolutions typically get tossed out along with the Christmas tree. One study showed 90 percent of the health-related pledges are history within the first 15 days of the new year.

These would include such things as losing weight, exercising more and smoking less. Another study found 88 percent of all resolutions end in failure. Why? One fitness expert pointed out that there are no quick fixes. “It took time to get where you are now and it will take time to get where you want to be. People go into resolutions expecting overnight miracles,” he said.

Free weight training needs to be done correctly to gain benefits.

Another study suggested that the brain is wired for certain behaviors and trying to change those behaviors is very difficult. In many cases it’s not that an individual doesn’t want to succeed, it’s often a case where the individual makes resolutions without a plan.  Fitness and weight loss, for example, go hand-in-hand like salt and pepper. Weight loss is based on exercise and diet; fitness is best attained when you do the right exercises and watch the diet.

There are things an individual can do that can help in extending the life of a health resolution, said Brent Cook, owner of the Sports Mall and the fitness center within the new City Center. He suggested that one of the most important requirements is to involve other people. It could be a friend or a relative or a personal trainer. “Friends and relatives offer support. Having a friend along when you exercise or plan a menu helps. Create a social environment.

“Of course, working with a personal trainer is best. Making a financial commitment on health issues creates the better likelihood of individuals following through. Also, there’s a commitment to the trainer. That is, being at a certain place at a certain time. Also, the right trainer gives an individual motivation and an environment to accomplish goals."

Sports Mall owner Brent Cook suggests involving friends and family to help meet health resolutions.

Probably one of the main reasons to meet with a trainer, short term or long term, is the right trainer can schedule the right exercises to accomplish goals, whether they be losing weight or shaping up the body. The wrong exercises or exercises done incorrectly can be of little benefit and can actually harm an individual.

“Many people do the wrong exercises and also don’t realize they need to reach their target heart rate when exercising to get the maximum benefit,’’ Cook noted. There are methods whereby a trainer can be certified in fitness, weight loss, stretching, conditioning and nutrition. In selecting a trainer, one of the first questions should be about certification.

There are, of course, several options open to attain health and fitness goals, including joining a health club, a fitness center -- there are a number of county-run centers -- and enrolling in a variety of classes such as yoga, dance, pilate, martial arts, boot camps or water exercises. The thing to remember is there are no quick fixes. An individual should set reasonable goals and be patient. “Don’t be hard on yourself. Be patient. Over the long haul, to accomplish your goals, it’s almost better to go slowly. It takes time to change habits,’’ said Cook.

A whole-body vibrating machine improves circulation and improves range of motion.

People make resolutions for a number of reasons, including the chance to evaluate results, be they small or large, and they stimulate action, hopefully over the long haul.  To meet fitness goals individuals should figure out what their objectives are and why they set the resolution; involve others in their plans; and select a program designed to meet those objectives. In the end, New Year’s resolutions will be a challenge. Getting involved with friends, family or a personal trainer will make an individual better equipped to meet the challenges.

Available Fitness Programs Pilates and Yoga Classes -- Develop higher levels of strength, flexibility, balance and tranquility. Water Exercise Training -- Low intensity workouts in deep and shallow water for cardiovascular and strength training. Spin Classes -- Group non-impact sessions for a cardiovascular workout. Boot Camps -- Intense physical training meant to shape up quickly. Senior Programs -- Classes designed for individuals 60 and older. Personal Training -- Fitness experts that can help design and assist in exercise programs and nutritional diets. Aerobics -- Exercises that help with cardio and pulmonary systems. Zumba -- Latin music combined with dance moves create enjoyable workout.

Most Common Resolutions - Lose weight - Get fit - Spend more time with family/friends - Drink less - Quit smoking - Save money - Eat better foods - Volunteer - Get out of debt - Find love - Get organized - Reduce stress