This is the year when you are going to move way from being marginally healthy and all the way to being truly physically fit. The process will not happen overnight, but the right approach will help you to see results a lot sooner than expected. While there are a number of elements that must come together if you are to make 2018 the healthiest year you have ever enjoyed, these basics will get you going in the right direction.
Start With a Complete Physical
Before you even think about setting any type of fitness goals, it makes sense to call the doctor and arrange for a complete physical. It doesn’t really matter that you feel fine. The goal is to establish a starting point for all your efforts. That includes finding out if there is some minor health issue that should be resolved before you embark on a fitness regimen involving certain types of exercises.
Based on your general fitness level, the doctor will be able to confirm if there are certain exercises or activities you should avoid for the time being. That’s not a bad thing, since it will give you a better idea of what sort of workout would be best for you at this time. Remember that as any health issues are resolved, the range of exercises you can include in the workout will expand.
Make Positive Changes to Your Diet
Diet is another area where you could likely stand some improvement. If you are serious about getting as fit as possible, identify the foods that you need to restrict or eliminate from your diet. Keep in mind that outside of allergies and other life-threatening situations, most foods will not need to be eliminated completely. You will need to cut back on them however. That means something you currently consider part of your weekly or daily routine may only be enjoyed once a month or on special occasions.
Remember that a diet is not all about avoiding certain foods. It also calls for including foods that supply your body with the nutrients it needs to function properly. Even as you remove some things from the grocery list, find others that can take their place. For example, more fresh fruits and vegetables and less processed food will be good for you. Leaner cuts of meat will still supply the fat your body needs, just not more than is necessary. While it will take some doing, you are likely to discover some new favorite foods and several different ways to prepare meals. In the long run, that adds more interest and versatility to your diet.
Design a Beginner Exercise Schedule
Even under the best of circumstances, you need to start with an exercise regimen and schedule that is challenging but manageable. While it would be great to walk into a gym and bench press as much weight as the regulars, that is not likely to happen. A better approach is to begin with a basic schedule of exercises and gradually build on it.
This approach accomplishes a few things. First, you do begin the process of toning your body and building muscle without feeling worn out during your first week. The fact that you can get through the entire routine and still make it to the shower allows you to notice differences in the way you look and feel fairly soon. It may be that your clothing fits better thanks to shedding a few pounds or it could be the sensation of feeling stronger in general.
You also avoid the potential to become disillusioned before getting started. Trying to do too much too quickly is a sure way to lost interest and fall back into familiar habits. When you are doing enough to challenge your body but not more than you can reasonably manage right now, you are more likely to stick with it. Along the way, you are also more likely to decide working out three times a week is something you look forward to doing.
Purchase the Right Starting Equipment and Accessories
With your beginner routine settled, start investing in the equipment and accessories needed to ensure success. A few basics like a jump rope, a chin-up bar, and a bench with some weights may be all your home gym needs right now.
If you plan on walking, biking, or running as part of the initial fitness plan, buy a heart rate monitor and wear it throughout your entire workout. The goal is to see how long it takes to raise your heart rate, and how long it takes for it to return to normal once you take a break or enter a cool down period. The monitor is great for tracking your progress, since a heart rate that returns to normal relatively soon after completing a workout is a sign that you are getting in better shape.
Know When to Up Your Game a Little
There is no rule that says you stick with your current workout for three weeks and then automatically increase repetitions or add new exercises. You are not in a competition with anyone. When you notice that your current routine is no longer offering much of a challenge, that’s when you should adjust your efforts and make things challenging again.
Once you are ready to take your workout to the next level, start looking around for new sports equipment for sale. You’ll find some great deals online and also enjoy access to a wider selection of brands and equipment designs. Best of all, it can be delivered to your home instead of you needing help hauling it away from a store.
Supplement Your Home Workouts With a Class or Two
While much of your workout planning focuses on exercising at home, there’s no reason you can’t take a class or two at a local gym or fitness centre. Augment what you are doing with that aerobic training equipment at home by taking water aerobics at a local health club. It adds another element to your workout and also allows you the chance to interact with other people who are also getting fit. Along the way, you might learn a new routine or two that you can use at home.
What are you waiting for? Schedule that checkup today and get started on your fitness goals. Invest in the right equipment and be consistent with your workouts. As the year progresses, the difference in your endurance, physical condition, and emotional balance will be obvious.