(Originally published January 27, 2017)

January – the start of a new year. The start for many people to fulfill their New Year’s resolution to lose weight.

While I’m thrilled so many people begin the year motivated, it’s frustrating when the gym I use is overcrowded.

I’m used to having access to whichever cardio machine or weight machine I want to use without a line.

When I have to wait to use equipment, I lose momentum. As a result, my motivation fades.

Because of this issue, I avoid the gym in January. It would be easy to take a break from physical activity in January, but I know myself. If I take that long of a break, it would be very difficult for me to restart being active.

My focus on staying physically fit and encouraging clients to be fit is due to the increasing cost of health care as we age. We’re living longer because of advancements in treating heart disease and other medical conditions.

Even though Medicare will cover our medical expenses when we’re over 65 years old, it doesn’t cover all expenses. It’s estimated a 65-year-old couple will need an additional $315,000 to cover healthcare expenses as they age.

So instead of taking the easy way out and doing nothing in January, I find other things to do to stay physically fit. I bundle up and go for a walk. I pause in my day to do a few crunches, push-ups, and squats.

This year, I also planned a ski trip. Skiing causes me to step outside my comfort zone due to my fear of heights. For this reason, I’m a cautious skier and venture only on green runs.

Even though I ski the easier runs, it’s still a workout. Just putting on those darn ski boots while bundled with layers is exhausting!

Knowing I would be skiing for three days, I prepped for it. I worked on strengthening my legs and upper body. Planning for the ski trip forced me to stay active.

All that prep work paid off. I had no injuries and was able to enjoy my days on the slope. I took my time and rested when I felt my legs becoming tired, especially after fresh powder.

Returning from skiing, I’m even more motivated to stay active. It may become a regular trip for me in January.

Whether or not your New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, target living a healthy lifestyle. This type of lifestyle requires staying active.

If you become frustrated with an overcrowded gym, find other ways to stay active. Try planning a ski trip like I did to spark your motivation.


Niv Persaud, CFP®, CDFA™, RICP®, CRPC®, is the Founder of Transition Planning & Guidance, LLC. Life is more than money. It’s about living the lifestyle you want and can afford. For that reason, Niv consults with clients on money, life, and work. Her approach capitalizes on techniques she learned throughout her career, including as a management consultant, executive recruiter, and financial advisor. Her services include developing spending plans, comprehensive financial plans, divorce financial reviews, and retirement plans. Niv actively gives back to her community through her volunteer efforts. She believes in living life to the fullest by cherishing friendships, enjoying the beauty of nature and laughing often — even at herself. Her favorite quote is by Erma Bombeck, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I used everything you gave me.’”