There is so much information in the fitness industry about how to lose weight and get fit that it can get very confusing. Your friend is telling you that you need to eat X amount of protein for your muscles to grow while an article you read says that same amount of protein is bad for your health. It seems that on every fitness and health topic you can think of there is an argument for both sides, so how do you know what is going to work best for you?
At the end of the day you need to do exactly that – find out what is best for you. This can be a case of trial and error, but you need to learn some lessons and get some experience on your health and fitness journey to find what is going to make your personal fitness journey a success. What works for your fitness idol may not work for you because everyone’s bodies are different and everyone thinks differently.
Keep things simple for yourself and master these 3 things which will bring you to your health and fitness goals faster and easier than trying to do what everyone else is doing:
1. Figure out what exercise regime is going to work best for you.
What type of training makes you feel good and will leave you excited for more? You aren’t going to stick to an exercise schedule if you hate it! Here is a list of exercise activities that you can pick from to incorporate into your lifestyle:
- Lifting weights at the gym - Home circuit workouts
- Running along the beach - Yoga/ Pilates
- Swimming laps - Bike riding
- Dancing - Fitness classes with friends
- Rock Climbing - Personal Training sessions
- Adventure sports - Team sports
2. Find a healthy way of eating that you enjoy.
There are countless diets you can try and different things you can cut from your diet to make you ‘healthier’ and lose weight ‘faster’, but losing fat simply comes down to calories in and calories out. You need to be in a calorie deficit to lose fat and if you are eating more calories than your body needs you will gain fat. This doesn’t mean that you should begin restricting yourself to 1000 calories per day though, as this will cause a list of other health problems that counteract what you are trying to achieve. In the long term you are actually likely to gain extra weight if you are restricting yourself to this degree, due to your metabolism dropping and going into starvation mode.
Therefore, forget about diets and aim for HEALTH instead. Your body will naturally lose fat at a healthy rate this way, so don’t be obsessed about the scales. As a rule of thumb try to eat as many natural foods as possible and eat minimal processed food. If your diet has been full of junk food recently and you are finding it difficult to swap over to a healthier way of eating, transition into it slowly and aim for progress with your diet, not perfection.
3. Get mentally focused.
What are you trying to achieve? Become clear on your goals right now and dig deep on why you want to achieve them. ‘I want to look good in a bikini’ is too superficial, why do you want to look good in a bikini? See how deep you can go with this question, because this deep reason is going to give you the fuel to do what it takes when you don’t feel like it. Write your goal and your ‘why’ on a sticky note and put it somewhere you will see every day to remind yourself of the reason you are doing this.
Two other things to write under your goal is how you will feel once you achieve your goal and how you will feel if you do not achieve your goal at all. Avoiding the pain you would feel in not reaching your goal is a strong tool to use in your weakest moments during your fitness journey. Meanwhile keep your focus on how you will feel once you achieve success and picture this as often as possible to help propel you towards what you really want.