2020: Welcome to the Year of Fitness
WHY YOU SHOULD CARE
Because this year, getting fit is all about you.
By Barbara Fletcher
It’s that time of year again: We’ve fested and feasted and now we want to do something about it. It’s January and we want to get fitter (cue New Year’s resolution groan).
But there’s good news for getting fit in 2020, even if your partner didn’t surprise you with a Peloton this holiday season: It’s all about you. Yes, some trends involve the latest in gear and equipment. But there’s more focus on metrics (as they relate to your body) and how you choose to participate. From wearable tech to virtual classes to mindfulness, it’s all about putting you at the center of your workout.
That might involve “online training, more lifting, especially geared toward women, and ‘entertainment-style’ indoor cycling,” says Magz Kordiuk, a Toronto-based fitness professional with 10 years of experience.
Whatever your style, here are the ways we will be embracing fitness in the year to come.
Wearables Are (Still) Hot
You might ask, weren’t wearables big in 2018 and 2019 too? Yes, and they are maintaining that fierce pace in 2020. The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) annual survey of worldwide fitness trends recently found that wearable tech is the No. 1 trend for the year ahead. It’s all about keeping an eye on your personal stats, whether that’s with smartwatches, fitness and GPS trackers or heart rate monitors. It’s an estimated $95 billion industry with no signs of slowing down. Case in point: Google’s plans to snap up FitBit in the coming year.
High-Tech Fitness … at Home
Raise your hand if you love going to the gym. Some fitness enthusiasts are ditching gym memberships in favor of high-tech home equipment. Think the Mirror (that helps you watch yourself exercise), virtual reality sports (play away those calories), and yes, the Peloton bike, where you can livestream classes from the comfort of your own home, sweating as much and wherever you like. But virtual coaching is also tailoring the workout experience. For example, iFit takes treadmill runners and walkers around the world via instructor-led, screen-based workouts –– the incline and speed adjust according to the terrain, whether that’s the mountains of Patagonia or the beaches of Portugal, and you feel like you’re kinda almost there. “Virtual coaching removes the guesswork out of fitness,” explains iFit trainer Mecayla Froerer, and eliminates the possibility of ‘cheating.’”
Short Workouts With Big Payoffs
We want to get fit, but we don’t always have the time, and let’s face it: these days we’re more distracted than ever. Which is why we can likely expect the fitness world “catering to shorter attention spans” in the new year, Kordiuk says.
High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), which involves bursts of high-intensity effort with periods of recovery in between, has long been used for cardio and fat-blasting. As we move into 2020, look for HIIT to continue to feature in fitness routines around the world (it ranks No. 2 in the ACSM study). But we might see an uptick in hybrid workouts, such as HIIT yoga. Variations of yoga are also looking to become popular, according to IPSO.com –– although gin yoga (yes, you get to drink gin while perfecting your Toppling Tree) might end up being just a flavor-of-the-month option.
There’s also the HIIT workout that’s a hit with the likes of Meghan Markle and Khloé Kardashian: the Megaformer, a beast of an exercise machine that combines cardio, endurance, strength and flexibility all at once. It’s one of the fastest-growing fitness trends, according to ClassPass, and Livestrong.org cites it as “the breakout workout trend of 2020.”
When working on our fitness, it’s easy to get caught up in the numbers: split times, crunches done, pounds lost. In 2020, look for a focus on mind and body connection –– being kind to yourself and, in turn, the muscles and bones that keep you going. This can encompass everything from mindful eating to meditation to getting proper rest. Slowing down and being good to yourself can result in a plethora of benefits, including injury prevention and better mental health. “Mindfulness goes hand in hand with any fitness discipline,” Kordiuk explains. “The more you can hone in on being present in what you’re doing and why you’re doing it, the more clear your intention becomes,” adding that with intention and mindfulness, focusing on your fitness “can become a journey, a transformation and/or evolution.”
Regardless of how you decide to get up off the couch in 2020, there’s one surefire path to improved fitness: “Make yourself accountable,” says Kordiuk.
Remember: It’s all about you.
- Barbara Fletcher, OZY AuthorContact Barbara Fletcher