Often times the biggest hurdle to exercising is knowing how to start. Everyone knows they have to do something to get in shape but what is that something and how do I fit it in my crazy schedule? The abundance of information on health and fitness available to us can be overwhelming. So much that you may not know where to begin.
So where do we begin? Or is the question: How do we begin?
The very first thing you need do is go to your doctor and get the approval to start exercising. Your doctor may also provide some helpful tips as well.
After you get the “OK” from your doctor, try these 5 steps to help you get started:
- Make the Choice to Start Exercising and Eating Right
It may sound simple or even a little cheesy but by making the decision to change your exercise and eating habits you are making a commitment to yourself! Deciding that you need to change creates new possibilities. When you say to yourself “I am going to get in shape”, it means something.
- Write down everything you do
You need a reference that is realistic towards your weekly activity. In a calendar write down everything you do throughout the week. This should include work hours, commuting hours, nights spent with your spouse, your child’s activities and anything else you can think of that you do. You should also include what you do on weekends. Here’s why…..
Some people initially set unattainable goals, like working out for 2 hours a day, which sets you up for failure. This can be due to an old saying, “More is better”. However, this is not always the case. Knowing your schedule will help you set realistic goals and help you find a few hours a week to start exercising. You’ll have a visual perspective on what you can and can’t do with your routine.
- Research a program that is designed around your goals
Most people do not have enough information before they start a workout program. So how do we get the information we need? The good news is we live in the information age. Take advantage of your favorite search engine and learn a little bit about fitness and nutrition. Find a source of information you like with the simplest workouts and nutrition tips and take notes.
If you have the money, hire a personal trainer for a few sessions to help you get started. Hiring a personal trainer is a great way to get started because you have made a commitment to meet someone to workout. Your goal is to have the trainer show you the basics on exercise and eating healthier. It is much easier to learn how to perform the exercises safely with the help of a personal trainer!
- Create a Simple Plan and Set Realistic Goals
Keep it Simple! Following a simple plan while on a hectic schedule is much easier than following an elaborate plan. You should plan which days you will work out and set one goal centered around your nutrition for the week. For example, “This week I will work out 3 days for half an hour and I will eat a little less each meal.” Simple is success.
- Execute Your Plan
Now that you have a plan, all you need to do is follow it. You should look at your plan every day upon waking. You need be mentally prepared for the great day ahead of you. Having your daily schedule in hand will help you achieve your goals for the day. When you complete your workout for the day, highlight it or cross it off your list. It will show you that you accomplished something for yourself. This will be the hardest and most rewarding step. I don’t know how many times people have told me how much better they feel right after they finish their work out. If you’re struggling to get your workout started for the day just remember that satisfied feeling that is waiting for you at the end!