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Allen Dixon is the owner of two Upstate 9Round fitness centers — one on East Main Street in Spartanburg and one on Asheville Highway in Inman. He is offering fitness tips to families to help them get active and fit during the Fit Family Challenge. Here are seven tips:

1. Set reasonable and obtainable goals. For example, if losing weight is your goal shoot for 10 pounds. Once you reach that plateau, set another mark. Next, set your goal for 20 pounds. All this depends on the amount of weight you need to lose. If you start running as your preferred exercise set your goal for 1 mile; once you reach your goal, shoot for 2 miles. An obtainable goal is more likely to keep you motivated to continue exercising. The key is setting a goal and working toward it. Without a bulls-eye, you will never hit your mark.

2. I encourage each person not to get fixated on the scales. As you exercise and build lean muscle your body composition changes. Everyone has heard muscle weighs more than fat; that’s not true. A pound is a pound no matter what it is. Muscle is denser than fat therefore it takes up less space so you may not drop the pounds like you expect. Pay more attention to your body and how your clothes fit.

3. Another thing: If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. The only thing that will keep you fit and healthy is proper nutrition and exercise. Don’t fall for the latest fad diet or newest infomercial that promises dramatic results in a short period of time. Eat right, drink water and exercise at least 30 minutes a day with a routine that will elevate your heart rate such as 9Round 30-minute kickbox fitness.

4. It’s always good to have an accountability partner. On those days you think you will skip your exercise, your accountability partner can and should keep you in check. Your accountability partner can be a doctor, spouse, child or friend. It doesn’t matter who. Just have one.

5. Always set yourself an appointment to exercise. After all you are doing it for you and your family. You don’t miss that doctor’s appointment, dentist appointment, hair salon appointment, nail salon appointment — you get the picture. If you set an appointment for yourself, you are more likely to stick to it.

6. Exercise will increase your energy level and improve your overall health. It’s proven, so find a program you enjoy and stick to it. Everyone wants more energy and to feel good. At 9Round 30 minute kickbox fitness, the total body workout changes every day and is a HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) facility that will keep things fun and exciting. You can hit the heavy bags and other equipment and get lots of aggression and frustration released and a great workout. A trainer is at every workout and a membership includes a doctor moderated nutrition program that provides a daily meal plan based on the individual. Stop by your local 9Round for more info and age restrictions. The first workout is always free and there is never a class time so it’s convenient and the workout is only 30 minutes. The workout can be modified and most families can do it together You can spend 2 percent of your day working toward staying fit and healthy.

7. Stay focused on your results and your health. Life gets crazy, but we must find time to exercise. It’s an investment you can’t afford not to make.

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