As much as you want to ignore the inevitable pain, it will go away in just a few days. It can be difficult to make that mental commitment and get yourself through the tough times on your first day at work or even when starting out with a new fitness routine. This article discusses strategies for reaching plateaus so you aren’t constantly struggling along the way.
If you are looking for ways to stay consistent with your fitness routine, there are a few things that you should do. For example, how to stay consistent with working out and diet.
Note from the editors: This is a guest post by Grant Gannon.
What comes to mind when you think about the ideal man? Is it the well-dressed, trim, and fit gentleman? Or do you see a slovenly obese guy waddling along the street, a double cheeseburger stuffed into his mouth? Exactly.
In a culture that is becoming more sedentary by the day, the most crucial component of what makes us men, our bodies, is sometimes disregarded in their maintenance. It’s all too easy to let our bodies slip between the cracks as we grow from adolescence to adulthood. We spend more time ignoring our bodies than maintaining them, whether it’s because of school, employment, or establishing a family. Obesity and inactivity are killing men all throughout the nation and the globe. While we may only sense an additional breath or two while mounting the stairs, the consequences of physical inactivity are many. Being overweight and out of shape may lead to an increased risk of heart disease, reduced sexual stamina, diabetes, high blood pressure, and sleep apnea, to name a few consequences.
I made the decision to get in shape a year ago, on my 26th birthday. I was weary of being 50 pounds heavier than I was when I was 18; I was tired of always being ill because I smoked everyday; I was tired of not being able to sprint up a flight of stairs without pausing to catch my breath; I was tired of not being fit. As a result, I made the decision to make a shift. I lost all that weight along the road and noticed that I was not only looking and feeling better physically, but also emotionally. Please keep in mind that I am neither a doctor or a professional trainer while you read this piece. What you’ll find here is my fitness advise, gleaned through an above-average degree of immersion in achieving a state of fitness. Any exercise you choose to perform as a consequence of reading this column should be done only after careful assessment of your current fitness level and consultation with your doctor. So let’s get this party started. Let’s take a look at three crucial components in becoming healthy before you go on a treadmill or pick up a weight: motivation, humility, and objectives.
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Why are you doing this, you may wonder. Is it for your own benefit? What’s the name of your partner? What about your kids? Perhaps it’s for a buddy who is overweight and needs a little motivation to start exercising? Whether it’s a single element or a combination of factors, the desire to be in shape will be the driving force behind every exercise.
There may be moments when you don’t want to work out when you first start, or after you’ve been on a fitness regimen for six months. You’re not going to be able to do it. These are the occasions when you’ll need to concentrate on why you’re working out in the first place. There are lots of apocalyptic scenarios to drive you to exercise, but I’m not going to go through them here. Let’s look at some nicer, more appropriate motives instead.
Perhaps you’ve grown weary of standing on the porch watching your kids play football in the yard and want to join in. Perhaps, rather than being a puffing and wheezing blob, you’d prefer to contribute more to your partner in an intimate circumstance. It may be as basic as wanting to be able to remove your shirt without feeling self-conscious at the beach. You don’t need six-pack abs to feel good about yourself, but you do want to feel good about your looks.
Find a means to remind yourself of why you want to get back in shape after you’ve figured out why. I’ve never been a huge fan of stuff like writing inspiring messages on your bathroom mirror or wearing a bracelet with an inspirational message on it. You should be reminded of your drive rather than being suffocated by it. I have a high school snapshot of me taken the day before I began basketball practice my senior year. After a full-contact football game, several buddies and I shot a silly selfie of ourselves without our shirts on. That was the greatest shape I’d ever been in. I’d peek at the picture every now and then to remind myself that I was capable of a high level of fitness. It’s up to you how you remind yourself, but make sure you do it.
YOU ARE NO LONGER 17 YEARS OLD. Is that clear? When people ask me how to get back into the gym, I tell them that coming to the gym for the first time isn’t the difficult part; it’s going back that many guys struggle with. Too many guys fail in their fitness goals because they act as if they’re still 17 and rush through the first session. If you don’t pull a hammy throughout the exercise, you’ll feel like you did three rounds with Kimbo Slice the following morning. You can hardly stand because your knees, back, and neck suffer. So, when you’re thinking about your next exercise, the words ‘Hell’ and ‘No’ normally come to mind first.
In coming columns, I’ll go into my fitness schedule, but here’s how I began last spring: Walking at 2.4 miles per hour with varied degrees of inclination for 30 minutes on the treadmill. When you’re slogging away on a treadmill, soaking wet, performing a workout like that, it’s difficult to appear cool. Starting slowly, on the other hand, will create a more solid platform for fitness improvements. It takes a certain amount of humility to get over the ego component of ‘looking cool’ when working out. Isn’t it something that all guys could use more of?
Setting and achieving goals is an important aspect of getting in shape. Having a goal to strive towards as a measure of accomplishment gives you positive reinforcement that your efforts are worthwhile. The bathroom scale is the simplest aim to achieve. Choose a number that you want it to read and get there. This is something you should talk to your doctor about. Small or major goals are possible. Maybe all you want to do is run a mile without stopping, lose 10 pounds, or run a 5K event.
The greatest part about your objectives is that you can quickly make new ones after you’ve completed the previous ones. My initial objective was to run a 10K. I reasoned that if I could achieve that, the rest — reducing weight, stopping smoking, and becoming in shape – would fall into place. That’s precisely what happened to me in September when I ran a 10K.
Set a fair objective; you want to be able to achieve it in a reasonable length of time. You may aspire to run a marathon someday, but a 2-mile fun run may be a better place to start. The important thing to remember is that no matter how out of shape you believe you are, you can get back into shape. You’ve spent years getting to this position, but you can get back on track to health in only a few weeks. You’ll be a better guy as a result of it.
The “how to get in the habit of working out in the morning” is a blog post that provides advice on how to mentally prepare for your fitness routine.
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