Why 90% of All New Year’s Exercise Programs Fail

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Nick Shultz, Executive Director, Red Brook Health & Wellness Center

Nick Shultz is the Executive Director of Red Brook Health and Wellness Center, a full-service facility located at 400 Red Brook Boulevard in Owings Mill. The Center differentiates itself with its experienced staff and personal trainers, individualized programs, range of classes and more than 100 pieces of strength, cardio and functional training equipment. Red Brook focuses on improving the overall strength, wellness and mental attitude of its members with its motto “we change lives – not just numbers on a scale.”

  1. This is the time of the year when many seek to improve their physical condition, with the hope of losing weight, gaining muscle or re-shaping their bodies. Why do so many people fail at this endeavor?
  2. More than 90% of all New Year exercisers give up their program after two weeks. The primary reasons are a lack of a guidance from a professional, combined with the absence of a realistic fitness plan. They try to do too much, too soon and quickly realize it is more that they can handle. Instead of expecting a steady progression to reach their goals, they want immediate results. Another big trend is seeing people do the same routines, exercises, and workouts they did years ago. The mentality today is very different than it was 5, 10, or 20 years ago. Full body workouts that last 30 – 45 minutes trump a 60 or 90 minute body part routine.
  3. Most people think they can devise their own program, correct?
  4. Sadly, yes. They make the mistake of trying to make drastic changes to their diet and/or exercise routine or don’t realize working out without changes to their diet is pointless. For those that continue after a few weeks, they hit a plateau and also get frustrated by the lack of long-term improvement. Everyone’s body reacts differently depending upon many factors. People generally don’t have the knowledge to alter routines and get past those plateaus.
  5. What are some of the common mistakes people make?
  6. First and foremost, not setting goals and seeking professional guidance. People can also increase their chances of success by including a work-out partner that can instill confidence and provide day-to-day incentive. People don’t assess their body condition before starting so you can measure actual progress.
  7. How can a professional help?
  8. At Red Brook Health and Wellness Center, all new exercise candidates go through a one-hour assessment program which includes a functional movement screen and a base workout catered to their goals and needs. A fitness, nutritional, or health related professional should help a client map out their fitness and wellness program.
  9. How do you react to people that complain about a program after the first week or so?
  10. It depends on the person. We try to be as positive as possible but also realize that habits are hard to break. It actually takes work! In some cases, they might be “cheating” themselves by not accurately recording what they are eating, as an example. We encourage people to utilize an on-line app that enables them to record what they are eating each day. Using that method, we can see where their daily calories are coming from and determine what they may be doing wrong. We will also reevaluate their program, because there are many factors that come into play.
  11. What are common injuries for new exercisers?
  12. We see a lot of people with poor posture or performing exercises incorrectly, which leads to back issues and other injuries. If people start running too soon or have improper footwear, we also see stress fractures.
  13. People are generally inpatient, correct?
  14. Absolutely. It is important to making small progressions and have goals that are obtainable. People want instant results, and that does not just happen. The key is to make lifestyle changes that have benefits for years to come and is sustainable.

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