When MPower Fitness co-owner Justin Vanadore worked the front desk early this month, he heard the phrase "it's my New Years Resolution to lose weight" more times than he could count.
He said in just the first couple of weeks in January, they had an increase of around 100 new memberships at their Palm Coast gym. In fact, they've recently hit a new milestone — 2,000 members, and still growing. When asked about why January becomes such a busy time for gyms, he said many people feel guilty after the holidays.
“That’s the normal time of season where everybody eats bad, right?" Vanadore said. "Everybody. You have your pies, your turkey, ham, whatever.”
He added that many people have been thinking about joining a gym for some time, maybe even since the summer, but that life happens.
“You never have time to do it, and then January comes around, and [it's] ‘I’m going to do it,'" Vanadore said. "'It’s my New Years Resolution to lose weight.’”
MPower Fitness is not alone in this aspect.
Journey Fitness Center owner Richard Boyd wrote in an email interview that they gained more members in the first two weeks of 2018 than all of December combined. He also wrote they've had a 50% increase of calls to inquire about their services. As for new members and their resolutions, Boyd wrote that people make resolutions because they like goals.
"Starting a new year is like a fresh chance for individuals to make changes in the right direction," wrote Boyd. "We love that our members want to make resolutions."
But in order for members to see their resolutions come true, Vanadore said they have to make it a priority in their lives. All they need to bring to the table is desire and effort, adding that people don't realize they're paying for more than a gym membership.
“They’re paying for a lifestyle change—a behavior change,” Vanadore said.
He said he wants as many members as possible to join, but that he also wants them to be successful and happy.
“Half these people, and I hate to say this as a gym owner, we won’t see them again after March," Vanadore said. "Until next year.”
The best advice Boyd wrote he could give to new members is to make small changes that will add up over time.
"Start with a plan that you can enjoy over a lifetime," Boyd wrote. "Whether it be nutrition or fitness, make specific, detailed, and attainable goals. Have someone that knows you to help you stay accountable."
For Vanadore, the people who have the best chance in achieving their New Years Resolution to be healthy are those who make it a lifestyle change, rather than just a passing hobby. If you live healthy, Vanadore said, you'll lose weight.
“Consistency is the key in being successful in fitness," Vanadore said. "It’s not a quick fix.”