Fitness is essential to a healthy lifestyle. And exercise is one of the best ways to keep you trim, strong, and full of energy.
All of these benefits are yours for the taking, and it is never too late to get started.
Here are a few bits of wisdom from those who have made fitness a part of their lives:
Forget “no pain, no gain”:
This tired old phrase is absolutely untrue, and yet you may still have this perception of exercise. A good workout should challenge you and get your heart pumping, but it should never be painful. There are people who love working out and spend an hour or two in the gym every day, but this is not ideal (or realistic) for the rest of us. If you push yourself too far it can lead to burn out, or possible injury. Instead, aim for 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise at least 5 days per week.
Change up your routine:
One of the best habits of fit people is to mix it up their workout routine. This is great for a number of reasons. First, adding some variety into your routine keeps you from getting bored (treadmill again?) and giving up. Secondly, our bodies respond better to exercise when we challenge them in new ways. So, try something new (Pilates, yoga, boxing, Zumba) it will challenge your mind and your body.
Share your goals:
Sharing your fitness goals with others is another terrific way to help keep you on track. When you let your friends or family know your plans and goals, it creates a support system for you, and can also help to keep you accountable. So, be sure to share with others…or, (even better) try recruiting a friend or family member to get fit with you!
Look at the big picture:
Losing weight is one reason to get fit, but is definitely not the only one. Regular physical activity can vastly improve (or even prevent) health issues including arthritis, diabetes, and heart disease. It is also great for boosting your mood and relieving stress and depression. Personally, I like to think that working out is great because it makes me feel good (with the added bonus of making me look good).
Make fitness a priority:
This habit is the ultimate key. It is all too easy to make your work, family, errands, chores, and everything else a priority and to let exercise somehow disappear from the list. However, most fit people are fit simply because they make it a priority. Try to shift your thinking about exercise…realize that is time that you are dedicating to taking care of yourself (and what is more important than that?). It will make you healthier, happier, and improve your waistline!