We all have different goals in mind when it comes to fitness, health, and happiness. But, one common thing we all struggle with at times is progress. Whether that be falling off the wagon, starting and stopping so many times you lost count, or just being overwhelmed – our dream for an active life may be sidelined at some point. That’s okay! Below are some things to keep in mind if you are wondering how to start working out, on your twentieth restart, or even crushing the game!
Consistency Beats Intensity
When asking the question “How to Start working Out”, the number one problem is usually consistency. Yep, it’s true we all mess up. Getting back on the horse is the hardest part. Rome was not built in a day and neither is your goal. Continually showing up for yourself is the biggest hurdle. What might be hindering your goal is overcompensating for a missed lift, a missed meal, a missed percentage, or a missed workout. Making the next day more intense, more restrictive, longer in duration to “catch up,” or even doing a two-a-day may lead to an increased risk of injury. But, it also may be feeding the negative feedback cycle: are you more likely to do something punishing yourself or giving yourself some grace and understanding and completing it? If you do not like the gym – making yourself do more at the gym as a consequence probably will not make you like it more.
What is Your Why?
Many people set goals for themselves without really thinking of why or how they are doing it. Make sure that these goals are attainable and reasonable. Meaning, potentially having a few short term goals to reach your long term goal may be your best bet! Starting smaller and building your confidence may lead you to your long term goal faster. The other factor to always consider is why you are chasing these goals. Make sure it is something you want – a new lift PR, a new time PR, technique mastery, or a healthier life.
How to Start Working Out – Does The Shoe Fit?
Not everyone needs to do the same thing when it comes to being active. There are a multitude of fitness routes out there; crossfit, running, weight lifting, peloton, systems of strength, orange theory, home programs, beach body. The list goes on! Making sure that you find something that fits your interests and budget is key to a consistent lifestyle change that leads to later victories. Having an accountability buddy always helps as well, so make your activity more fun by adding a friend of family member. However, you choose to fitness, just make sure that you enjoy what you are doing.
Mental Health Matters
You are trying to improve your body, why not the thing that controls it!? Research demonstrates how our minds affect performance and output. So why not work on training it. While there are a ton of apps out there to help, speaking with a counselor or psychologist may be more beneficial. It’s okay to not be okay! Finding the right balance of mental health and physical health is important. Practicing yoga, mindfulness, and even allowing yourself a “Brain-Break” during your day have all been shown to decrease stress and anxiety. There is even a whole field of Psychology dedicated to Sports and Performance. In a previous post we discussed how the brain plays a role in pain, it also plays a role in getting injured in the first place as well! Keep it sharp!
Rest Days are NOT the Enemy
One of the harder parts about fitness, is once you start it’s hard to stop. I know for some that may be hard to believe, but it can come in many forms, even guilt. Afraid of missing gains, dropping, pounds, or it just disrupts your schedule, but rest days are important and most training programs even have de-load weeks programmed! Rest days do not mean you have to just sit, but at most a mild sweat is the most you should do. This allows your muscles to grow and gives your brain a break as well. Don’t forget the more you push your muscles the more your brain works as well. A hike, a walk, a jog, an easy bike ride, and swimming are all examples of rest day activities for those who still want to close your rings, get your steps, or are tracking some other way.
How To Start Working Out
Hopefully these 5 tips on how to start working out to stay healthy and void injury give you the boost you need to be consistent and see results. If you encounter pain that keeps you from staying consistent with your workouts or stops you from training altogether, reach to us for a Free Phone Consultation with one of doctors so we can keep you training during rehab.