Fitness

FEAT Fitness: Getting Started

Tip of Week:  “All them Nikes you got on, you better just do it!” – Robert Freeman (aka Granddad from the Boondocks)

We all would like to live long prosperous lives. Part of that means living a healthy lifestyle. Growing up I was always involved in sports so that kept me fit for the most part. Now I rely on balanced meals and exercise to remain healthy. I exercise  four to five days out of the week on average, mostly because I get great enjoyment of weight lifting and challenging myself physically. While I generally try to eat healthily, I don’t get too involved in calorie counting or things like that. I am not going to restrict my intake of certain foods that I love, like bacon and cupcakes. So I personally choose to work a little harder to make up for it. A lot of people struggle with either the first steps of exercising or getting into the habit of exercise.

Fear not, for if you are amongst the crowd that has a hard time going to the gym or keeping up with your exercise, you may have just approached it with the wrong initial attitude. Exercising is not a lifestyle, rather it should be a part of your lifestyle. It doesn’t matter what physical activity you choose to do as long as you’re active! You have many activities to choose from, yoga, weight lifting, jogging, walking, swimming, dancing, any traditional sport, etc. In order to be able to stick with it long-term, I suggest you establish goals and a general plan for how you would like to be a healthier person. The goals are easy to establish, they don’t even have to be within immediate reach. The planning of how you’ll reach them is what should be focused on at the beginning.

Your plan should consist of three key factors, time, nutrition, and specific exercise activities. You know your schedule, so you should figure out what days you would be able to exercise and how much time you have free on those days. The nutrition part may actually make your life a bit easier since you could pick  ahead of time some basic meals that you can prepare easily and some that you might try when you have more time to prepare a meal. Once you pick the activity or activities for your exercise you should also figure out what you’ll be doing during each exercise session for the week. Depending on how you like to organize your days, you can either structure your plan so that you know exactly what’s going on for each day, or if you’re like me and your schedule doesn’t always stay consistent you can lay out different days and just complete them in any order given your availability.

If you’re just starting out, start off slowly. I would say the first week should involve shorter less intense activities, just to warm your body up. Then as you go along, you can progressively increase the intensity of your workouts. Just remember, getting fit is not an instantaneous event, it’s a process.

Here is a suggested exercise to get you started:

  • 30-45 minutes of a Cardiovascular activity
  • 60 push-ups (in sets as large as you want)
  • 40 full sit-ups (in sets of 20)
  • 60 crunches (in sets of 20 or 30)
  • 30 weightless squats (sets of 10)

Check back next week for another tip and suggested workout!

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