Every person deserves to live his or her life to the fullest. And living that full life starts with fitness. After all, more than 1/3 of all American adults are classified as obese. So it’s time to get up off the couch and on the path to a better life!
Whether starting from square one or just looking to jump back on the fitness train, here are 10 tips to ensure fitness success.
1. Document Your Meals
This is perhaps the toughest tip on the list. Journaling about one’s meals seems easy enough, but it can be tough to keep one’s self accountable. However, that’s the entire point of keeping a food journal.
Most people don’t think about how many calories they consume on a given day. For instance, that glass of soda with lunch that’s become a daily habit? That’s an extra 240 calories alone.
Spread that out over three meals and it’s easy to see how people could consume over 2,000 calories per day.
But keeping a journal, whether physical or with an app, is a great way to learn more about one’s own eating habits. Start paying attention to trends, like when the most calories are consumed or which foods offer the least nutritional value.
2. Slow And Steady Wins The Race
Imagine going into a triathlon with only a month’s worth of training. It likely wouldn’t go too well, to say the least.
So why should the rest of a fitness journey be any different? Here’s one of the tips for fitness success that needs to stick with readers: start out slow.
It doesn’t matter that it may take 15 minutes to run a mile. Think back to when running a mile seemed impossible in the first place.
Not only can taking things slow keep you on the path to fitness success longer, it’ll keep you safer. Remember, there’s ‘good’ pain which means things are going well and then there’s bad pain that can turn into an injury. Don’t be afraid to slow things down every now and again.
3. Consult Specialists
Fitness success isn’t a one-person journey. At least, not the fitness successes that last long.
Those truly dedicated to improving their health should make sure to consult specialists along the way. That includes a nutritionist, dietician, and even a psychologist in some cases.
Changing one’s eating habits too quickly can shock the system and result in illness. Before making any major lifestyle changes, be sure to talk to a doctor.
4. Make Exercising Fun
Okay, okay, so perhaps exercising will never be fun, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t ways to spice it up. Keep the routine fresh and exciting by establishing a schedule that incorporates different body parts on different days.
Walking on a treadmill each day can result in weight loss initially, but that doesn’t mean it’ll work in the long run.
Our metabolisms are a bit tricky. Once acclimated to a certain routine, they’ll consider that routine the new normal. Those who have ever experienced the dreaded weight loss plateau know all about this.
So keep things fun and varied. If switching things up on a daily basis seems like too much, come up with a new routine every two or three weeks.
5. Fitness Success Is A Lifestyle, Not A Fad
To make one’s fitness journey a true success, it’s necessary to think of things holistically. No, that doesn’t mean only eating organic greens or cage-free eggs.
What it means is that it’s important to take care of all aspects of the body. A lot of people mistakenly believe that fitness is solely physical. On the contrary, it includes physical, emotional, and mental wellness.
Yes, it’s important to shed some pounds and fit into those beautiful jeans. But it’s also important to do so in a healthy way that encourages a positive, healthy mindset.
6. Set Small Goals
Imagine looking in a mirror and thinking, ‘I want to lose 50 pounds by beach season’. That’s a pretty steep hill to climb.
Now imagine saying, ‘I want to lose one pound a week’ or ‘I want to eat more vegetables and get more protein in my diet’.
Undoubtedly, the second and third example are far more attainable than the first. That’s because they’re smaller, more specific goals.
It’s great to have an overarching goal! But remember that it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Setting smaller goals is a great way to gain momentum that’ll help when setbacks hit.
7. Be Patient
Many set off on the road to fitness success expecting the pounds to melt off immediately. Unfortunately, that’s not quite how science works.
Just like weight gain doesn’t occur overnight, neither does weight loss. It’s going to be at least a few weeks before a difference is noticeable.
But that doesn’t mean those looking to better themselves should give up. Be patient and persistent. It’s all a matter of sticking with it.
8. Don’t Step On The Scale Too Often
One of the most common questions about fitness is how often one should weigh themselves. Most experts all agree that stepping on the scale too often isn’t a great idea.
Those who weigh themselves on a daily basis, for instance, are going to see very different numbers. Factors like water weight, sodium levels, and even bile can affect one’s weight.
Keep the weigh-ins to once every week or two. It’ll keep the pressure off in a major way.
9. Eat Regular Meals
Those on the go understand how easy it can be to skip meals due to work or familial obligations. But skipping meals can actually hinder one’s fitness journey.
Make an effort to eat smaller, regular meals to keep from binging on one or two larger meals throughout the day.
10. A Little Splurge Is Okay… Sometimes
Finally, let’s address something that every reader wants to know: yes, it’s okay to have that part of that brownie.
A little indulgence isn’t always a bad thing, just make sure it isn’t too frequent. Try and stick to the 85/15 rule, which dictates that if a person eats well 85 percent of the time, it’s okay to splurge 15 percent of the time.
As most specialists will say, everything in moderation.
Looking For More Tips On Fitness Success?
These ten tips should be more than enough to get start the journey toward fitness success. Stick with it, eat regularly, and above all else, take care of yourself.
Whether your fitness journey is just beginning or you’re on the fast path to success, we’re here to help! Check out our health and fitness section for more tips to ensure fitness success.