Sunday, May 5, 2013

Getting Fit 101

I started working out in November of 2012 after joining a boot camp my uncle was running. I have been working out every week since then. Working out consistently for six months does not make me an expert, but I have learned a few things on this journey. Allow me to share:

One of the first things my uncle said  to us when we joined his boot camp was "I give you my time, commit to giving me yours. If you're going to be a part of this boot camp you have to commit yourself to coming-even when you don't want to." My uncle does his boot camp  free of charge. I think that used to be one of the reasons I showed up (used to be- I now look forward to it). He didn't HAVE to do this for me. He CHOSE to. He took the time out of his schedule to prepare workout routines for the group. The very least I could do was show up, ready to work out.

Find People who  love want  to work out
I've never met anyone who loves working out every. single. day. But I have met people that are passionate about living a healthy lifestyle. If you can find someone like that-someone that will support you when you feel like giving up, hold you accountable for showing up, challenge you to push yourself to your limits, and encourage you to make healthier choices- you will be more successful in obtaining your fitness goals. If you can find more than one person, even better.

Throw away your scale
One of the worst things you can do is step on a scale to measure your progress. Weight fluctuates every day, sometimes by 3+ lbs. You don't want to get excited about a new work out routine only to get side-swiped by disappointment when you step on the scale and realize you've gained weight. And, that weight you've gained? It might just be muscle. I've been working out for six months and I've lost 4lbs. That's it. I could get depressed about all the weight I haven't lost, or I could be excited about going from a size 4 to a size 0. 

Don't Give up
Two days after my very first boot camp, I called in sick to work. My legs were so sore and stiff and I could barely move. It was the most pain I have been in since I started, and I will never forget how I felt after that work out. I was SO out of shape. I could have given up after that. I could have, but I didn't. I knew that if I kept at it my body would get used to the pain and I would eventually learn to love that feeling and get excited for that feeling-because that feeling means it's working and I'm doing something right.

Watch what you eat
If you want to see results, you have to change your eating habits. Eating healthy can be expensive and hard, but making better choices for your body is easy. Can't give up bread? Try 100% whole grain bread instead of whole wheat. Have to have a piece of chocolate during that special time of the month? Try dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate, and limit your serving size. There a thousands of Pinterest boards dedicated to healthy recipes. Fad diets have been known to not work. Instead of torturing yourself with a crazy diet plan, try healthier choices for things your enjoy eating. The weight won't come off as fast. but you're more likely to stick to it and the weight is less likely to come back.

I'm not sure if this is 100% accurate. But it has to be close.

Don't starve yourself
If you don't give yourself a balanced, healthy diet your body will go in to famine mode and will hold on to the fat you're trying to lose. I've heard the best thing for your body is to eat six small meals a day and I think this throws some people off, because who has time to eat six meals? If you can't eat six small meals a day, try three, well proportioned meals along with three healthy snacks; I think you'll find it beneficial. 

Drink lots of water
Water is the best things for your body. It suppresses appetite and limits your food intake, it moisturizes your skin to keep you looking younger and healthier, it strengthens your immune system, and over all, keeps you healthy. How much water should you be drinking? I don't know that it's an exact science, but if you feel hungry, try drinking 8-12oz of water (the body often confuses hunger for thirst). Instead of having a soda with lunch, replace it with a glass or two of water. Buy a water bottle and try keeping it with you where ever you go, or at your desk while you work and every time you look at it, take a couple of sips. When it's gone, refill it immediately and repeat. If you don't like water, try infusing it with fruit at first or over ice to make it more appealing.

Give yourself a cheat day
One day a week, I allow myself a greasy cheeseburger, fried zucchini  or brownies with ice cream on top. After all, if you deny yourself all the good in life, life just ain't worth living. 

Your body is always a work in progress
I still have my fat days, most days I don't feel "ab-fabulous", and my inner thighs are still not where they need to be. But... my husband can't stop telling me how great my butt looks, I have noticeable muscle definition in my arms and I can now fit in to a size 0 jean. This didn't happen over night. I worked hard and kept at it for six months and I am just now starting to see the results of that  hard work and dedication. I still have a lot further to go if I want that six pack or those sleek and sexy runner's legs, but I am so happy with how far I have come.

I hope this helped to encourage you!  Now go out there and get fit! I know you can do it.

1 comment:

  1. This is definitely encouraging! Since I have been training for a marathon I stayed the same weight, and I was feeling really bummed about it. But gaining muscles definitely throws that off. I could skip meals over a week and watch myself drop 5 pounds (partially of water weight) to only put it back on a week later, or I can keep working out and see my clothes become too big for me! I've learned to not base everything on the scale...
    Anyway, great tips!