2017 is here! We may be a couple weeks into January and some of you well on your way with new resolutions or goals for the year, but there may be some of you who are still trying to wade through the craziness of the holidays. I think we all tend to do a bit of evaluating when the new year comes and I’m no different. I’m not a big “resolutions” girl, as I do a fairly decent job of keeping up with myself all throughout the year, but I definitely take time in January to do some evaluation in all areas of life…health included.

My fit life is not much different than yours. I’m sure you think that because I’m an instructor and all-around health lover, that I have it all-together, but that’s not true. I go through different phases of life and my exercise and eating routine kind of roll with that too. Last year was a different year for me in a lot of ways and my health disciplines were impacted by that, so I’m looking at some new focuses for 2017. Here are my short-term (3-6 month) health goals! (Interested in seeing more New Year Fitness Tips? Check out the Skechers blog where I am featured along with some other health bloggers!)



Last year (2016), I lost some of my strength as I had a ganglion cyst which was hindering much of my upper body workouts. I focused a bit more on running and more bodyweight training since that was easier on my wrist, but now that I’ve had surgery to remove it, I am ready to build that strength back up. I have always loved weight training and the feeling of strength and power, so I’m using the first 3 months of this year to focus on this. What does this look like? I’m going back to some more traditional lifts (squats, shoulder press, incline bench, bench press etc) with a focus on increasing weight and using super-sets.

2017 Health & Fitness Goals : www.claresmith.me

2017 Health & Fitness Goals : www.claresmith.me2017 Health & Fitness Goals : www.claresmith.me

(Wearing Skechers Flex Appeal High Energy 2.0)


I ran a half-marathon last year for the first time in 4 years. I wouldn’t consider myself a hard-core runner, in the sense that I do it every day or it’s the only thing I like, however, I will always have some sort of running in my weekly routine! There is something about that endorphin rush at the end and the clearing of my mind that I am addicted to, not to mention the chance to get outside! However, I never really had a plan I followed–I kind of just did what I wanted varying between long, slow runs, and speedwork/tempo runs. I may do another half this year and would like to see if I can improve my time, so I want to be a bit more intentional in my running plan. Since the first 3 months, I’m focusing on more strength, my running will be limited to about 2 days of focus, so for right now, that looks like 1 day a week of a tempo run or speedwork and another day of a longer, slow paced run.


So part of working out is eating right. One of my biggest tips is to match your eating to your activity. If you aren’t as active, then your body isn’t needing as many calories, but if you are training every day, then you better be eating to fuel that. Your body will hold onto fat if you skimp in this area, so it’s an area I have to address many times with my coaching clients. The problem with many active people is not that they aren’t hungry, it’s that they can justify eating anything which includes lots of “empty” calories. Listen, your life is your life. I’m not here to tell you that your 6 miles run does or doesn’t justify an oreo sundae, but we have to be mindful of what we are placing in our body. My body will need a nice mix of protein, fats, and carbs, focusing on foods that provide quality nutrients to support my system. Water consumption is not usually an issue for me although the winter may be a little harder for me to get it in, but I will also continue that along with the BCAAs I take about 1x day.

So how does all this work practically in a 7 day week? Here is my base plan, which of course, is always up for adjustment. Remember this— the plan you start out with RARELY works just as it is. There is some tweaking that usually needs done so if you are finding that need with your New Year’s resolution, then you have freedom to do so! There is no “right way”—only the way that works well for you. There are also weeks when I need more time during the day so I can’t fit my workout in, so I’ll switch it out for a weekend workout, or maybe my longer mid-week run, will move to a Saturday or Sunday because the Ohio weather is better to run outside etc. I also try to do at least 1 full day (if not 2) with zero workout.

Monday: Shoulders & Arms + Speedwork or Tempo Run

Tuesday: Plyos & Legs (+ teach Pilates)

Wednesday: Cardio & Core (Longer Slow-Pace Run)

Thursday: Back + HIIT ( + teach Pilates)

Friday: Off

Saturday: Chest & Shoulders +Sprints

Sunday: Off


2017 Health & Fitness Goals : www.claresmith.me

(Shoes: Skechers Flex Appeal 2.0

Joggers: Revelation Wellness)

Finally, I don’t want to underestimate the importance of down time and rest. Exercise is a stressor to the body–one that, in general, works well for people, but taken to an extreme, can actually backfire. We each will have a certain mix of what it looks like for us to be active and being at rest. Our society places action, intensity and goal-achieving as utmost importance, but what we get with that is burnout. It’s important to take some time daily and write, think, and pray. This is an important part to my overall wellness and if it’s lacking, then so is the peace and stillness that comes with that. I’m finding that the older I get, the more downtime I need. I’m not sure if I’ve always been a hidden introvert, or my stage of life has turned me into one, but in order for me to pour out as much as I do physically and emotionally to my friends, family and ministry, I need a lot of time to myself to rest–both physically and emotionally.

2017 Health & Fitness Goals : www.claresmith.me

2017 Health & Fitness Goals : www.claresmith.me

(Boots: Skechers Descender: Denali

Top: Blooms & Linen)

So I would love to hear from you now! Did you make any health and fitness resolutions or goals? Is there one small thing you can do to inch you towards a goal you have in mind? Please share below!


This post has been sponsored by Skechers. All opinions are my own. ( While you have no reason to trust that my opinion is not jaded by the fact that I received compensation for this, the 2 shoes in this post are SO COMFORTABLE and comfort is my middle name anymore, so right up my alley! ) Thanks Hannah & Mary for being my photographers!