Starting Your Fitness Journey: How to start (and keep a healthy lifestyle)
So, you have decided to finally focus on yourself and implement some healthy habits by joining the local fitness centre. Congratulations! The hardest and biggest step is often just walking through the doors and admitting you want some help. Gyms, studios and clubs often seem intimidating to someone with little to no training experience as they feel inadequate or out of their comfort zone in a room full of strong, fit bodies. The reality couldn't be farther from the truth, most gym goers are just the average person trying to implement some healthy habits and feel a bit better about themselves, so put to rest the negative self talk and take the plunge! Now that you are ready to start your journey, let's go through some tips to ensure it's a positive, safe and long experience for you.
Proximity is key:
Although you may have heard about some amazing training centre on the other side of town, the reality to training is that when trying to make it a part of your routine; if it's close and convenient then you are more likely to consistently come to the facility. With a busy work schedule and life, often if something on our schedule is out of the way or not on the direct route of travel, we simply will put it in the too hard basket and not attend. Finding a facility or program that can be close to work or home will ensure you find it easier to stay on track.
Exercise made fun gets done:
Although there are some key principles that all exercise programs need to be beneficial (resistance training, low intensity and high intensity cardio) the exercise you actually genuinely enjoy will be the activity you will most likely be able to stick too long term. Hate running? That's fine, there are plenty of options for cardiovascular training that will be enjoyable as individual preference will always vary.
Find a facility or Personal Trainer that you feel comfortable with:
As mentioned above, starting a fitness journey is often intimidating and the first step is the hardest. It's important to not make this process any harder by choosing a facility, program or trainer you don't feel comfortable with. All facilities are designed for a specific target client to serve them best, for example a boxing gym would be sure to intimidate someone who has no inclination to learn how to box but is the perfect environment for someone who enjoys the discipline and learning environment that a boxing gym brings. Do a survey of your local area to get a feel of what you think would best "fit" you, check out their social media pages and websites to see if they have clients just like you getting the results you want to achieve.
The old saying "slow is fast and fast is slow" rings true here. Many times, before, people have decided to get started on their journey and have made wholesale changes that proved to be unsustainable. If you currently are doing no training at all, then walking 3 times per week for 30 mins is a great start! Making some small incremental changes will prove to be the difference over a period of years, where a healthy habit can be built long term rather than making big changes that prove too difficult.
Speak to an expert:
Having an expert in your corner will always ensure that whatever program you decide to start, will be the best thing for you. A Personal Trainer who does a full consultation, screening process and analysis will safely be able to design the correct program to work at the current level of fitness, but also make safe progression.
Get started with a friend:
Your circle of influence is key here! You are more likely to succeed ongoing if your friend, partner or colleague is on the same journey as you. Having an accountability buddy will help to keep both parties on track to get some great results.
*Disclaimer: Individual results vary based on agreed goals. Click here for details.