BRITTNEY LOHMILLER / THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — Lawrence Smith performs leg lifts to exercises his abdominals at Natchez Total Fitness Tuesday. Every year, Smith makes fitness related New Year’s Resolutions. For 2014, Smith wants to work on doing more cardio and abdominal exercises. “I sleep better, I feel better and my body looks better.” Smith said, who exercises between two and three hours a day, five days a week.
BRITTNEY LOHMILLER / THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — Lawrence Smith performs leg lifts to exercises his abdominals at Natchez Total Fitness Tuesday. Every year, Smith makes fitness related New Year’s Resolutions. For 2014, Smith wants to work on doing more cardio and abdominal exercises. “I sleep better, I feel better and my body looks better.” Smith said, who exercises between two and three hours a day, five days a week.

Miss-Lou residents in the resolution-making spirit

Published 12:01am Wednesday, January 1, 2014

NATCHEZ — From hitting the gym and losing weight to being more dedicated to church and charity work, a few Miss-Lou residents are making resolutions for 2014 they hope will bring them a prosperous New Year.

Although Lawrence Smith spends two to three hours a day working out at Natchez Total Fitness five days a week, he still has fitness-related resolutions for this year.

“Every year, my mind is on what I need to improve on,” Smith said.

Smith has resolved to spend more time on cardio and abdominal workouts in 2014. His resolution to do more strength training in 2013 pulled him away from working on cardio and abs, so Smith hopes to focus on those particular workouts.

After taking a week-and-a-half break for the holidays, Smith said he is ready to challenge himself in the gym in 2014.

Smith has been working out for years and said his advice to people looking to start the new year at the gym is to take the first step.

“Just get in here and start working out,” he said. “Sometimes getting here, that’s the hardest part.”

Natchez Total Fitness Manager Dallas Butler said the beginning of the year is always the gym’s busiest time because losing weight is such a popular resolution.

“Because it’s after the holidays, and they eat too much, like I do,” Butler joked. “They just want that fresh start.”

Losing weight is at the top of Harry Smith’s New Year’s resolutions list, which also includes being more dedicated to his church, St. Paul Missionary Baptist, where he serves on the deacon board.

“Staying off the golf course is what it’s going to take,” Smith said. “I’m a faithful member, but I want to be a little more focused on church. There’s always room for improvement.”

Smith is also resolving to love his wife, Jean, more.

“I love her very much, but there’s always room for a little more love,” he said.

Smith said he is looking forward to what 2014 has in store.

“It’s going to be a prosperous year,” he said.

Not everyone is picking today to start down a life-changing path, though.

Natchez resident Missy Brown said she “resolutely” does not make New Year’s resolutions.

“I can never manage to keep them,” she said, laughing.

Brown said if people want to make changes in their lives, they can do it at anytime without adding the pressure that can come with keeping New Year’s resolutions.