Fitness Trends for 2021 and Beyond

trends Dec 24, 2020

Last year, I did a podcast, Fitness Trends for the New Decade, and since 2020 was not the year we expected in any way, I decided to take a look back to see what I said a year ago. Did I hit the mark? Were we headed in this direction before COVID-19 threw our lives into disarray? 

I'll share my predictions for 2021 in a new episode the first week of 2020. But here are a few of the things I predicted last  year as we started the new decade. We might have gotten off to a rocky start, but I think the things I mentioned last year are even more important than I would have imagined a year ago.

If you want to create the life of your dreams, you need to take care of your body, mind, and spirit. Here are five trends I believe have staying power:

1. Meditation. Meditation will become more important as we continue to learn how mindfulness techniques impact health. Meditation helps improve sleep, anxiety, depression, and stress. It promotes happiness, increases pain tolerance, and helps us be more present. 

2. Playful Adult Retreats and Camps. If 2020 taught us anything, it's that we all need more play in our lives. We will continue to see an increase in interest in things like adult sports retreats and camps (think MLB Fantasy Baseball camps, adult running retreats, girls' weekends in a remote cabin), yoga retreats, and anything that encourages us to leave our busy lifestyles to relax, play, and recharge.

I also put things like RAGNAR races, Rock and Roll Marathon/Half Marathon weekends, informal running adventures, and packing up and traveling to a destination race with a group of friends into this category.

We need more play, friendship, fitness, and fun in our lives!

3. Treating the whole person. We will continue to recognize that pills and quick fixes are not always the answer. Physicians will spend more time talking to patients about mental health struggles. They will prescribe counseling, nutrition, and exercise when talking with patients about all areas of health including: stress, anxiety, depression, heart health, cholesterol, diabetes, cancer, and more. 

4. Active lifestyles for older adults. First, I don't know why 50 is now the age that is labeled as "old."  As someone in her 50s, this annoys me to no end. If you market to or work with someone 50+, don't treat them --or think of them-- as being old. "Older" adults grew up moving and will continue to move until they take their last breaths. The 50+ crew may need to modify some of their activities, and they might slow down a bit, but don't under estimate or create fitness classes or programs that assume this group is incapable of moving. The 50+ crowd is full of adventure-seekers, and it's important to them that they continue to move well so they can see the world. 

5. Holistic endurance training. I believe in this one so much, I wrote a book about it that released in March (yep, right as we were all trying to figure out what the pandemic would mean to us.) There will be more focus on training with longevity in mind. Rather than cranking out miles with a no-pain, no-gain mentality, more people will train by listening to their bodies and responding with changes in their training plan. They will journal so they can record, reflect, and respond to what they are seeing and feeling. This might mean they take extra rest days or run less and add strength training or yoga days to their training plans instead.

And, I'll share more about this in the 2021 trends next week, but I believe we will see more mindfulness practices brought into the endurance training realm. We'll use our training time to focus on gratitude, optimism, and mindfulness. 

What do you think the big trends for the decade and for 2021 are? How are you adapting your training and wellness routines for 2021? And will those practices help you create your dream life?

If you want to run for fun without comparisons that drag you down, in a supportive environment, check out my training options. Whether you want to run your first 5K, train for a marathon or half marathon, or run for purely for fitness and fun, I have a plan to help!


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