FROM SELF.COM – BY Lucy Danziger

As sure as the ball dropping in Times Square, New Year’s resolutions to get in shape abound. After January 1, the gyms are packed, lines at the health food store snake down the block and everyone’s talking about looking fine in 2009.

But a few weeks into the month, just as the mercury dips and retail prices decline, you can also count on a sharp dip in workout dedication. To the rescue: Rev-your-resolve tricks from one of the most inspirational trainers around–Jillian Michaels of TV’s The Biggest
who developed the workout to go along with our annual Jump Start Diet.

MAJOR MOTIVATOR 1: Write down your goals
Hoping to slim down for your college reunion? Want to tone your butt and thighs in time for shorts season? Looking for flat, sexy abs you’ll be proud to show off at the pool? Put it all in writing, either in a journal or
somewhere you can see it easily (the door to your fridge, perhaps?). When you find that your motivation is dwindling, simply read your list to get back on track.

MAJOR MOTIVATOR 2: Reward yourself
Each time you fulfill one of your goals, treat yourself to something you deserve: a pedicure or a magazine (like SELF!). This will help you stay excited and motivated to clear your next hurdle.

MAJOR MOTIVATOR 3: Pair up for workouts
Planning a sweat session with a pal is one surefire way to ensure you actually show up. Someone’s waiting for you! Beginning a healthy eating plan with a friend is similarly effective. Dieters who have support from their
buddies are more likely to keep the weight off than those who fly solo, according to research from the Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology.

When the beat goes on, so does your workout! Listening to music as you walk can make you go farther, according to research from the Journal of Music Therapy. And choosing an MP3 player over the TV at the gym can help you
feel more positive as you sweat, a study from Elon University in North Carolina indicates. Michaels loves any song by The Roots, but you can find plenty of keep-you-going exercise playlists at

MAJOR MOTIVATOR 5: Envision fun workouts and a fitter, firmer, more fabulous

Visualizing an energizing and entertaining workout a few minutes each day can make you feel more excited to exercise, research shows. Once you’ve covered your workout, focus on you: “Think about what you’re trying to achieve,” Michaels says. “Having intention behind your actions is extremely powerful.”

Read Michaels’s motivating story at, where you can join The Great 1-Month Slim-Down. It’s like having her train you for free!

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