Sunday, 17 May 2015

5 Things To Do When You Start Your Fitness Journey

lifestyle, fitness, health, gym, weight loss, advice, tips, what to do to start losing weight, gym advice, youwishyou, 2015, women,

With taking on more hours at work this has meant that I have been able to afford to do something really special for James' 21st, which I'm so excited about. I didn't think I'd be able to afford to go on holiday at all this year, but I've managed to book a short but sweet holiday to Croatia in July for James' birthday present. I was trying to keep it a surprise but he suspected I was up to something and I couldn't contain it for long, so he knows now, it's all in the open! With the countdown to Croatia officially underway I've been approaching the gym, my health and fitness with a little bit more seriousness and urgency as there are only ten weeks until we go and I am no way near comfortable to be in a pair of shorts yet, let alone a bikini. While I'm making the transition from casual gym goer to fitness goal chaser, here are some of the important things I've learnt anyone on a serious fitness journey should be doing to make your sessions count and your gains great.

-Get In The Right Mind-

While obviously I'm not exactly Jillian Michael's so I don't want to act too much like I know what I'm talking about when it comes to fitness but I think it's super important to get into the mindset that your ideal body is not going to happen overnight. I've tested and tried all the '14 day detoxes' and fasting diets and even though I think they are great the few weeks before going on holiday, they aren't going to be a solution for you if you're really looking to make large or permanent changes. You've definitely got to alter your mindset and challenge your willpower in a big way, at least a big way to me as I love eating crap so much. But, I've come to understand that I could do all the exercise in the world and as long as I'm still eating crap I won't get where I want in terms of health. I think it's so important to think of your fitness and health in terms of a journey; whether that's a ten week on ten month one, keep motivated from start to finish and keep happy even if after week one you haven't shed a pound because those changes will happen!

-Introduce Yourself To HIIT-

HIIT (high intensity interval training) sounds extremely intimidating, but I personally find it one of the funnest things to do when I'm working out. HIIT consists of short bursts of highly intense exercise followed by small low intensity recovery time. Shaking up your cardio with HIIT is a proven way to burn more calories than cardio at a steady pace as it kick starts your metabolism and gets your heart rate racing. It sounds difficult on paper but I find doing HIIT less boring than steady cardio and you also reap more benefits in a shorter amount of time. If you've hit a plateau in your progress, or are just looking for an efficient way to shed pounds fast then I'd definitely recommend weaving HIIT into your gym routine.

-Lift Weights-

I've done a lot of reading on the best sort of gym routine and all arrows point to not only doing cardio but also strength training to achieve the a strong, toned body. When I first started at the gym I was put off lifting weights because of two main reasons: I did not want to bulk up and look like a she-man and also because I couldn't think of anything more embarrassing than lifting tiny weights in front of people at the gym. Anyone else have these anxieties or am I just weird?! Either way, I've come to learn that these were nothing more than silly fears and probably sub-conscious excuses I was making to avoid trying something new. Change is scary in any circumstance, but it's not always bad. I just want to clear up that womens' bodies do not naturally bulk in the same way that mens' do when they build muscle because of our lack of testosterone so don't worry girls you won't turn into the hulk if you lift weights. When I decided to stick to a gym plan that involved lifting weights I also started to notice that people around me for one weren't all hauling about huge weights and also didn't care about what I was doing in the gym. Each journey is different and in any aspect of life to compare yourself to those around you is never positive, so when it comes to lifting weights don't be embarrassed, focus on yourself; you won't regret it!

-Form A Solid Routine (But Be Prepared To Change It)-

I don't know about anyone else but I find that having a routine to stick to definitely helps keep me on the straight and narrow. Creating yourself a set weekly routine (or borrowing a pre-made one off the internet) is a good way to add structure to your fitness journey and ensure that you aren't just turning up to the gym or starting your workout, doing a bit of this, doing a bit of that without knowing what you're actually doing. Ensure your routine focuses on every area of your body and doesn't skip out on the cardio! If you're unsure about what your routine should look like here is the one I've been following at the moment, so definitely have a little look if you don't know where to start when it comes to forming a routine. As you progress you'll need to alter your routine to keep up with your improved fitness and strength so although you should stick to a routine, keep updating it week on week by adding weight, increasing the amount reps and swapping exercises.

-Keep Track Of Your Progress-

The best way I believe to keep motivated from beginning to end is to witness improvement. Not knowing in what way you've changed can be disheartening as you feel like you're putting in a lot for little or no results, so keep updated with your progress to remind yourself that your hard work is paying off! I'd also like to reiterate that you should also be patient with your progress and not let it put you off if you haven't achieved what you wanted to as quick as you'd like to. Every journey is different and these things take time, so don't worry if after two weeks of regular exercise you haven't lost any weight because even if you can't see it there are changes being made to your body and you just have to be patient and persistent.

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5 comments

  1. Awesome post! i'll keep these advice on board

    www.bumascloset.com

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  2. This is a really great post! I think the most important one (and the one that is often overlooked) is getting into the right mindset. If you're really hacking yourself to get to the gym and you hate every minute of it, I doubt you'll be able to keep it up long term. It's about embracing a new lifestyle!
    Ivory Avenue

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    Replies
    1. Exactly that, you've really got to get your head serious about your goals! Xx

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  3. This is correct, doing HIIT training allows you to exercise right in the comfort of your own home without having to go to the gym. I recently started a some workout routines thats short and to the point. The thing is I cant believe I'm actually sticking to it.

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