We’ve all been there – starting the year with grand plans to get fit, lose some weight, or gain those muscles. Super pumped and optimistic, we dive in headfirst.
But reality check – most of us fizzle out after a few days or weeks. It’s too short to make those habits stick.
So how about a different mindset – instead of going all out and ending up in pain, pick an exercise routine you can reasonably do THAT YOU ENJOY, and start building good, consistent habits that will get you to your goals.
When we think of someone fit, we usually picture Mr. Muscles or Ms. Yoga Queen. But hey, fitness isn’t a size or a specific body type. It’s about having a healthy, strong, mobile, well-working body that can handle whatever activities you want to be able to do.
Now, fitness goals vary. Someone training for a triathlon or powerlifting competition sees fitness differently than someone getting back into exercise after two decades. Context matters, right?
Wherever you’re at, positive experiences with activity and movement is the name of the game. If you’re already a fitness geek, cool, tweak away. But for most of us, the exercise journey depends on our starting point and creating reasonable expectations.
And guess what? Getting in better shape doesn’t have to be rocket science. Just move more – stand up to change the TV channel instead of hunting for the remote. Easy, right?
Now, let’s start from the basics –
- Breathing. Yup, breathing! If you can’t breathe well, you can’t do much else well. Sit comfortably, breathe in, breathe out. Do it again. It’s seriously good for you. If you want to amp it up, try the 5-5-5 ratio. – breathe in for 5, hold for 5, breathe out for 5. Do it for a few minutes morning and night, feel the difference. There are plenty of breathing apps you can download to help if you aren’t good at counting,
- Three 30-minute exercise sessions each week. Walk, swim, stretch, yoga, jog, aerobics – you do you. A quick note on sports: they’re awesome, but warm up and stretch before you really get going.
- 2 sessions of resistance training/lifting heavy-ish things each week. Even if that heavy thing is just your own body! Building muscle is the best anti-aging strategy – aside from helping you look good, it has been shown to keep you alive longer and improve your mental health.
Whether you’ve been a sports champ or a couch potato, find your exercise groove. Start slow, do it consistently, and watch yourself become a fitness legend – full of energy, strength, and a renewed love for life. Let’s do this!