Exercising is important. The combination of exercise and proper eating habits are essential to living an active and healthy lifestyle. It’s what everybody wants. It makes you stronger, your body works more efficiently and it makes you an overall healthier person. So why does everybody struggle with it? Let’s look into that.
People try and go too fast.
Everyone wants to live a better lifestyle and get in better shape. We’re told that the best way to do that is to go to the gym or go outside and get started. That’s where everyone goes right? So what do we do? We jump right into it. The problem is everyone wants to fast track their success. They take on too much too fast. So much that they get overwhelmed, fall flat on their face and give up right away.
Slow down, pace yourself.
This is not a rush things kind of activity. You need to pace yourself. For one thing, your body is not used to working out. No matter what you’re going to be sore afterwards and it’s going to suck. But if you take on too much right at the beginning it’s going to feel like too much and it will put you off of exercising. That’s not what we want. We want to make this into a habit so it’s something we do naturally everyday without having to think about it. We want this to be long lasting. So how do we do that?
Start small and then build yourself up.
If you’re going to run, don’t start running 5k because you’ll never do it. If you’re lifting weights don’t give yourself heavy weight and a massive workout regime because you’ll never do it. If you’ve never done something before how much do you think your body can handle right off the bat? The answer is not much. So you need to start with the not much your body can handle. This depends completely on the individual. If you’re in decent shape from other things, you’ll be able to start off a little stronger. But if you’re completely new to the exercise scene then it’s a different story.
Start at ground zero. That means you’re going to be doing a lot of trial and error. For absolute beginners, as well as more experienced people, I recommend you start off with a personal trainer. Many gyms offer a free lesson with a new membership, take advantage of that. If you’re really new, you don’t know how to use the equipment, which equipment is for what, how to do the exercises properly, proper form; the list goes on and on. Use that personal trainer and get them to show you as much of the equipment and exercises as is humanly possible. They are an absolute gold mine of information. Use it. They’re going to want to give you a workout program but that takes up valuable time. A 10 minute google search can give you varying basic workout routines and how to form a proper workout routine. Use your brain and figure it out. Use the personal trainer to show you everything else.
Lose the fear.
The reason I say get as much exposure to the equipment as possible is because if you don’t know the equipment it becomes an unknown. That scares some people. If you don’t understand it or are afraid of it you won’t use it and you could be losing a valuable exercise tool. Don’t hold yourself back, you want to have everything you can available to you to make yourself into a healthier person.
Bring a friend.
Sure you can do it yourself. You need to be motivated and disciplined and focused but you can absolutely do this by yourself, and lots of people do. But for those people who are still struggling with their motivation or willpower a friend beside you can be extremely valuable. They push you to keep going, you challenge each other to do better, you improve faster. If you have a day that you’re just not feeling it your friend will drag you out of your slump, you’ll feel obligated to go. Having a friend with you makes it much harder for you to stop because it’s not just you anymore.
Be active in other ways too.
Don’t just go to the gym. Go for a hike, play some sports, do some mountain biking. Something active. Whatever it is you like to do. If you don’t have one of those interests yet, find one. There are enough things available in the world that there is at least one you will enjoy, do a little research in your area then do some more trial and error. Not everyone likes to go to the gym all the time so other outdoor activities are a viable option. Make it something you enjoy. If you enjoy it you are ten times more likely to keep at it and that’s what you want.
I want you to find something that works for you because I want you to feel good about yourself. Be active and enjoy it. You’ll be glad you did. The other half is healthy eating habits. For more information of forming healthy eating habits see my post Dieting 101.
Have any other tips that worked for you? Tell us in the comments below!