It’s a new year and you have your new found enthusiasm to get back into the gym. This is the first step towards your fitness goals. Let me help you with the next 5 steps to take you even further.
What are your fitness goals?
Are you starting a fitness program to help lose weight? Are you preparing for a marathon? Are you wanting to be stronger? Be clear in goals and choose the right programming that can help you progress, achieve, and stay motivated.
Create a weekly plan
Starting something is great, but seeing it through to the end is even greater. There are 7 days in a week and being meticulous with your time, purpose, and focusing on goals is essential to your success. Use a calendar, notebook, or a scheduling app to keep you accountable.
For example, Tuesdays being your leg day, Wednesdays are chest/back days, Thursday are cardio days, Friday thru Saturday rest days, and so on. Consistency and progression is key in any workout program.
Start low and progress slowly
Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will your body magically change overnight. Make the smart, honest, and realistic starting point in your fitness program that is right for you. If you're just beginning to exercise, start cautiously and progress slowly. Your success is not measured by the guy or gal who can dead-lift 330 lbs or bench press 200 lbs, everyone started somewhere and with time progressed to a stronger version of themselves.
Make your new habit into routine
Finding time to exercise can be a challenge. To make it easier, schedule time to exercise as you would any other appointment. Plan to watch your favorite show while on the treadmill, read while riding a stationary bike, or turn your weekly happy hour into a fun group fitness activity with your besties. Fitness is what you make it, so why not make it fun.
Allow time for recovery
Many people start exercising with frenzied zeal — working out too long or too intensely — and give up when their muscles and joints become sore or injured. I call this working out with an ego, which typically leads to failure. Plan time between sessions for your body to rest and recover. Performance is not simply measured by output but by the sustainability you can achieve overtime. Remember, athletes require less recovery time but only if you have learned how to properly recover.