How to Start Your Fitness Journey
Create a Goal
Starting your fitness journey can often seem daunting. A way of making this expedition easier for yourself, is to start with where you want to see yourself and setting a realistic expectation of how long it’s going to take to get you there. Your goal can differ from weight loss to gaining muscle mass. Another thing to take into consideration, is your mental health and whether you feel that this should be part of your goal; sometimes the journey is more than just how you look. So, to start this adventure, think of where you want to be at and break it down into smaller chunks. You’re going to just ‘eat healthier’ as it’s too broad, maybe you’re going to cut down (or even out) on a certain food that you know you eat too much of.
Training for 1 hour every day in line with your goal is amazing, but think about it, you still have another 23 hours in that day where you need to stay on track. That’s where the importance of your nutrition comes in. Tailoring your diet to your goal doesn’t need to be complicated! In its simplest form, if you want to gain weight, you need to eat more than you’re burning off. If you’d like to lose weight, you need to eat less than you burn! Of course there is much more to consider such as your starting weight, your age, your gender, your dietary requirements and how quickly you’d like to achieve your goal. As a general rule of thumb, we recommend a high protein diet for most people looking to change their body composition. Staying on track 80% of the time will ensure you still have some balance to your life but are able to get to your goal in a healthy, sustainable way.
Whether your goal is fat loss or muscle gain, we always recommend strength training. There are so many more benefits to it than you’d think, for example, better posture, stronger bones and joints, reduced pain caused by imbalances or weaknesses (a common cause for that back pain you can’t seem to shift!) Cardio can help you along the way too. Adding an incline walk to the end of your session is a great way to burn a few extra calories, which is perfect if your goal is weight loss. Obviously we love a good treadmill or stairmaster, but we recommend using them to supplement your strength training.
Figure out the equipment you need
If you’re starting this journey from home, why not set yourself up for success by making sure you have all the kit you need? Choosing versatile pieces of home gym equipment is a great way to save space and really make sure you get your money’s worth! We recommend a barbell set as you can target your entire body with just one piece of kit. They’re easy to store and take up a fairly small amount of space. Another great addition to your new workout space would be a studio bike! These are great at home because of their small footprint and their lightweight frame. You can follow along lots of online classes with one of these. Our final recommendation would be to grab yourself a pair of dumbbells or two. Again, they’re great for full body workouts and you can store them easily at home.
In the beginning things are going to be hard and you’re going to ache in places that you didn’t know you could ache but it’s important to remember that goal that you set for yourself. Rest days are just as important as working out so if you feel that you’re pushing yourself too far or that something just isn’t right, give yourself a break but you need to get back on the (metaphorical or literal) horse as soon as you can to maintain your progress. There may be hiccups along the way that set you back slightly but it’s important to know that this happens to everyone and it does not mean that you’re not going to get there; one bad day does not mean that it’s not for you. It may be beneficial to you to document your journey by taking photos of your progress so that on days where you feel like giving up, you can see how far you’ve come; always keep that end goal in mind. You can tweak your goal as you go as some things may not have been what you expected but once you reach that target, set yourself something new, something even more challenging. You’ll be amazed how far you can push yourself once you start!