As I sat back and thought about how crazy 2020 was, a specific thought came to mind: everyone had to adapt to the same changes.

Isn’t it wild that our country and other places in the world had a common similarity at the same time?

We were all challenged to change the way we work and adapt pretty quickly. While most of us, including myself, saw the negative aspect immediately, I switched my thinking from negative to positive under the circumstances.

We have been asked to stay home, limit large gatherings, step out only for the essentials, and take care of ourselves. During the first pandemic in the spring, I had never seen so many people out walking in the community and being active.

From bikes to fishing gear, everything was sold out online and in stores that were open. It was frustrating but pretty cool because it sent a message that we were outdoors and using the time to focus more on outdoor activities like exercise instead of just sitting in our house.

Even better, we could do it as a family! We got much-needed bonding time while staying healthy. At the start of the pandemic, the responsibility factor that came with exercise was built in – we looked forward to it because we enjoyed the activity, we had the extra time for it, and we did it with those we loved.

Usually this time of year begins the transition to a healthier New Year lifestyle. Health and fitness professionals try to motivate individuals to exercise and to help individuals get more into a routine.

After what the spring pandemic showed, it showed us that we can all actually do it, even if we don’t make New Year’s resolutions!

When people ask me about starting a fitness program, the first question I always ask is “What do you like to do?” I start by asking this because I want them to do activities that make them routine and motivate them to come back instead of giving them activities they don’t enjoy doing and keep them from getting back to exercise to return .

Going to the gym and exerting yourself isn’t everyone’s favorite thing to do. So I look for ways where they can enjoy what they enjoy and look forward to their exercises.

With that in mind, my 2021 fitness advice is to find activities you enjoy doing and use that as a guide for choosing exercise activities that will benefit your health!

We have already proven that we can do it. We just have to keep doing it.

Colder Months? No problem – layer up!

The best thing about wearing too much clothing is that if you get too warm, the layers can peel off. For the months when it gets dark too early, try to use daylight hours if you are able. If not, you can also work out at home, hit the gym, or use reflective materials to be safe and seen in the dark.

However you exercise and exercise, always make sure to stay hydrated. We may not be thirsty in the colder months, but moisturizing is just as important.

Drink water before, during and after an activity! One tip that helps me is to always have a bottle of water with me. When I have it with me, I’m more tempted to drink it.

We have already done a great job adapting to change and taking on new challenges in 2020. Let’s continue this trend and conquer it in 2021!

When we do things that we enjoy, it makes life a lot better. Spreading positives and continuing to become the healthiest versions of ourselves is what we should continue to focus on this year for our health and wellbeing.

An easy path for each of us is to choose a fitness activity that you enjoy and that motivates and focuses you to keep working on your mind and body in 2021.

Nick Jones is the fitness supervisor at Owensboro Health Healthpark.

Nick Jones is the fitness supervisor at Owensboro Health Healthpark.