So you have thought about exercising and becoming fitter but haven’t been able to make it happen?
We have all been there and my 6 Steps to Starting an Exercise Program will hopefully give you some direction and motivation to get off the couch and move.
“I’m too old”, “I’m not fit”, “I’ll start tomorrow”, “I’m no good at sports”, “I can’t run” – EXCUSES, EXCUSES, EXCUSES!
Of course we can all come up with a reason or two (or three) for not starting to exercise, however once you make that start and exercise regularly you will wonder why you didn’t start sooner.
Exercise can add so much value to your life. It keeps you healthy in mind, body and spirit and can add to your happiness and general well being. I’ve mentioned in other blogs about ‘endorphins’ the happy hormones that are released when you exercise – it is true. This article from ABC Online explains why we should exercise http://www.abc.net.au/health/library/stories/2007/05/10/1919866.htm
You don’t have to be a marathon runner or olympic athlete to exercise. In my next blog, we will meet a lady who has proven that walking is just as effective. So no more excuses – here are my 6 steps to starting an exercise program.
[bctt tweet=”6 Steps to Starting An Exercise Program – Today”]
1. Make the decision to start now
Take yourself for a 10 minute walk to start with, just as long as you are moving. While you are walking, think about the type of exercise you enjoy. The optimal program is 30 minutes of activity everyday (depending on the type of activity you select) and the minimum is 3 times per week. (Read my blog http://sizzlingtowardssixty.com.au/just-10-minutes-will-make-feel-better/ )
There is a myriad of exercise choices. Ask yourself the question – what do I like to do?
- Team sports
- Running (although you will need to build up to this)
Select something that you will enjoy and look forward to, because let’s face it there are many days when you think “Oh I don’t feel like exercising today” (even though you know you will better after you do it)
If you don’t know where to start, ask people you know to recommend a personal trainer. A PT will assess your current capabilities and work out a realistic plan for you. This costs money however it may be well worth it in the long run.
Also, I advise getting a recommendation for a PT as there are some many out there and some are not very experienced. You get what you pay for so make sure you select a PT that will be suitable for you. Seek
2. Medical Advice
With any new activity, depending on your health situation you should discuss with your doctor to ensure that you are in relatively good physical condition to start.
3. Invest in good shoes
You don’t have to purchase expensive workout clothing however, you need to invest in good footwear that is comfortable and fit correctly. The initial outlay might be expensive however your feet will love you for it.
Just wear a T-shirt and leggings or shorts to start – as long as you are comfortable. Maybe invest in a new workout outfit as a treat, once you have reached a milestone. Wearing a new outfit can make you feel great however it is not essential. “Not having the right workout gear” should not stop you from starting your exercise program.
4. Grab a Friend or Join a Group
Working out on your own is okay but it can be so much better if you don’t have to exercise alone. Grab a friend and get them onboard. If walking you can still chat even if it is a powerwalk. It makes the time go quicker if you are exercising with someone else.
If you want to broaden your social network at the same time, join a group. There are groups run by councils for various activities to encourage people to exercise. Sometimes they are free or have a minimal fee. Check out your local community activities to see what is on offer. Search Facebook as there are usually pages run by groups for various activities.
Working out with a friend or in a group will also hold you accountable. You have committed to meet them so it is more likely that you will think twice about not going (especially if it’s cold).
5. Variety is the key
How often have we started an exercise program only to see it fall away after a week or two. Unless you are passionate about a certain type of exercise you will easily become bored and instead of enjoying and looking forward to your exercise time, you will find it becomes a chore.
If this happens, mix it up a bit. In Step 1, I highlighted a few options for exercise so perhaps take two or three of these options and include them as part of your exercise plan.
6. Keep on Track Write down your plan.
How many days a week will you exercise?
30 minutes every day is great, however sometimes you may not be able to manage it. Don’t forget to include a rest day here and there depending on your fitness level. Also, think about what time of day you are more likely to exercise and try to stick to this same time.
When you first start, tick off each day as you complete your exercise until it becomes a habit. Don’t beat yourself up if you miss a day just make sure you get back into it the next day.
A trick when you don’t feel like doing any exercise is to say I will do 15 minutes at least. You will find that once you are up and doing it you can go the full time.
Of course, exercise is not enough to keep you fit and healthy. You need to look at your food choices and make sure you are eating enough ‘good food’ to fuel your body. That is another blog in itself.
Now you have the 6 Steps to Get you started – Go for it! Keep us updated on your progress.
[bctt tweet=”Make the decision – start TODAY – You can do it!”]
Let’s Keep Sizzling!