Maybe this is the day, the real day in a million you think of getting fit and losing those excesses. Let’s assume this is the case and you are thinking of starting and you don’t have any idea on what to prepare or get done before jumping in to your fitness program.
Don’t worry, in this article I will help you break down all the basic things that you will need to get started in achieving the perfect body you have ever wanted, so let’s start!
First I want to congratulate you for thinking of doing the best thing you can do for your health. Being physically fit can reduce your risk of chronic disease, improve your balance and coordination, help you lose weight — and even improve your sleep habits and self-esteem. Here are the 5 things you need to prepare to get started:
Assess your fitness level
Record the following things so you can track your progress and to assess your aerobic and muscular fitness, flexibility, and body composition.
- Your body mass index
- Your waist circumference, just above your hip bones
- Your pulse rate before and immediately after walking 1 mile (1.6 kilometers)
- How long it takes to walk 1 mile, or how long it takes to run 1.5 miles (2.41 kilometers)
- How many standard or modified pushups you can do at a time
- How far you can reach forward while seated on the floor with your legs in front of you
Plan your program
Planning is the first thing before jumping into your routine, design your program and consider these things:
- Mark your ultimate goal. Why are you doing this? To lose weight? Health related issues? Or do you have any other motivation? It’s best to set it clear at the beginning to keep you motivated in the process.
- Make your routine possible and balanced. For adults, getting at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week, or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity.
- Do strength training exercises for all major muscle groups at least two times a week. Aim to do a single set of each exercise, using a weight or resistance level heavy enough to tire your muscles after about 12 to 15 repetitions. Remember that any consistent even small effort will make a change.
- Mark your daily exercise time like an appointment you can’t miss, have a scheduled time and try not to be late every time, this will also keep you motivated and consistent.
- Choose what activities will fit you. Different activities (cross-training) can keep exercise boredom at bay. Cross-training using low-impact forms of activity, such as biking or water exercise, also reduces your chances of injuring or overusing one specific muscle or joint. Plan to alternate among activities that emphasize different parts of your body, such as walking, swimming and strength training.
- Allow time to recover. Our body muscles need recovery time, extensive workouts for too long is not correct. It may cause injury or sore muscles. Plan time between sessions for your body to rest and recover.
- Have your fitness notebook, everything on note can keep you motivated and progress even small is still a progress.
Get ready with your equipment
Shoes are the first you need to invest in, whether it’s for running or training. If you're planning to invest in exercise equipment, choose something that's practical, enjoyable and easy to use. You may want to try out certain types of equipment at a fitness center before investing in your own equipment.
Fitness apps for smart devices or other activity tracking devices, such as ones that can track your distance, track calories burned or monitor your heart rate will also be a great addition that will not cause you a penny.
After all of those things are set you can start your fitness training, remember to start slow and gradually increase difficulty when your body says it can manage. It’s your body so you will know what is too easy and what is challenging. Listen to it, you can take breaks if you need to and that is recovery. Monitor your progress every week so it can be more reliable and motivating than the daily fluctuating results.
Having the courage to start this is such an important decision, plan carefully and hope you can live the healthy habit you want. Goodluck and congratulations!