Many factors will come into play when setting your 2015 fitness goals. First and foremost, what are your goals? Do you want more endurance? Increase your strength? Lose a few pounds? Maybe you want to achieve all three. Either way, for each will have to take a different approach. Keep reading now to learn more.

— ENDURANCE —

30 minutes a day should be dedicated to some sort of physical activity, even if the 30 minutes has to be broken up into ten minute increments. With this alone, your endurance will start to increase, but to take it to that next level you will have to up the intensity of your workout. To increase your endurance without taking it overboard, aim to keep your heart rate at its maximum. For novice exercisers, subtract your age from 220 then multiply that number by 60 to 90 percent. The percentage will depend on if you want to be on the low end of your maximum heart rate or the upper end. For advanced exercisers, the same equation applies but multiply between 70 to 90 percent. Aim to keep your heart rate around this number at least three or five times a week. With each passing day, your endurance will increase.

— STRENGTH —

Weight training can be a little easier to set new fitness goals. If you’ve been lifting for awhile and notice that your muscles are no longer fatigued after a weight session, it’s time to up the ante. Try increasing your weights by two pounds. You’d be amazed at what a difference that will make. If two pounds seems too easy and you’re still not reaching complete muscle fatigue, up it another two pounds. The goal is to ‘almost’ not finish your sets. You want to finish, you just want those last couple to be difficult to finish. Make sure to rest between sets. For the beginner, the same will apply, just start off with a low weight and work from there. It may take you a few days to get the weight that is perfect for you, but that is better than starting off with too much. Your goals will increase as you continue lifting.

— WEIGHT LOSS —

To loss one pound of fat, you must burn 3,500 calories. Sounds like a lot, but with careful planning it can be accomplished. The object is to burn more calories than you consume. When setting a new fitness goal centered on weight loss, it’s best to keep in mind that to lose one pound a week, you must burn an additional 500 calories a day. Your first step is to determine how many calories you burn during exercise and what your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) is. There are many calculators online that can help you find this. When you have them add those numbers together then subtract 500. This will be the number of calories you will need to consume to lose weight. However, do not go below 1,200 calories. This can put your body into starvation mode and stop weight loss.

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