Five Easy Steps of How to Ease into Fitness by Kary Ott
Kary is the owner of Trinity Exercise Studio (15220 W. Western Suite E1, Edmond, OK, 73013) Visit the studio May 1st for their Grand Opening Events– FREE events throughout the whole day!
So you are considering starting a fitness program, but don’t know where or how to start. Truly, the first step is the hardest. Once you learn how to master the steps to better fitness one step will naturally follow another. Below are five easy steps to how to ease into a fitness program.
Number One: Define your why
Write down this list of questions, you’ll create two columns. Perhaps this will be the pro’s list side: Why do I need to start a fitness program now? Why do I want to start a fitness program now? Now ask yourself why again to each of those, maybe two or three more times until you have a solid list to work from.
When we define our list of why we need and want out of a fitness program it helps set our goal(s). Like looking at a map, it tells us what street to turn down…improve flexibility or reduce lower back pain, perhaps starting to stretch for 5 minutes daily before or after work…or maybe you said, reduce high blood pressure to get off expensive medication, perhaps cardiovascular conditioning, say a walk…movement…park farther away at the grocery, no drive through at the bank, get a little inconvenienced to increase the number of steps you take daily. How about improve strength? Squat to a chair and stand back up 20 times in a row, or maybe place your hands on the kitchen counter with your toes back away from the counter for a modified push-up and repeat 10 – 20 repetitions. Define your why so you know where to go, or what information to seek out to help you reach your goal. Your why must be stronger than your WHY NOT.
Number Two: Schedule it
What time of day are you able to add fitness to your schedule? How many days per week can you realistically exercise? How long each session are you able to allow? We all have 24 hours in our day, it is up to you how you choose to use them. When you are faced with the reality that you might need to work out before the family wakes up, before work, go back to your WHY list. Studies show those who exercise early in the morning have fewer scheduling disruptions than those who workout at night. No soccer games at 5:30 a.m., no PTA meetings at 5:15 a.m., no last minute schedule changes other than a battle with your pillow!
Number Three: Opportunities for growth
Write down your cons list side. Why haven’t I started a fitness program? Why do I not want to start a fitness program? What happened in the past that created this negative drive to make me not want to live a fuller, healthier life?
Here are some common reasons I’ve heard why not over the years…
Why not? Gyms are scary and intimidating. My comment, then do it at your home. Seek a certified fitness professionals advice for a safe and effective program that you can do on your own at your home and then have them check in every six weeks to update the fitness program.
Why not? I like fitness classes, but I don’t think I can keep up after I saw what they do on facebook. My comment…. Facebook is a great resource to share pictures, but remember they don’t show you the falls that it took that person to get to that position, its self editing to the max and it generally shows the pretty side. Just try something new. Make it an adventure and take a friend and research free classes in your area for first time customers.
Why not? I hurt my arm awhile back and I just haven’t gotten back into it. My comment…. You have two legs, let’s walk, let’s bike, let’s swim, let’s do something to just move your body!
Number Four: Do what you love to do
Did you once swim? What do you like about exercise? Do you enjoy listening to fun music? Do you hope to catch up on TV shows while walking on the treadmill? Do you love to connect with someone new in the group class? Do you love the way you feel after doing something GOOD for yourself? Define your why. Do what you love. Try something new.
Number Five: Set seasonal goals
Change is good. Change helps us to improve. If we do not change our routine, we will stay the same.
Through various injuries over the years I have realized the benefit of changing up the fitness routine to help improve or balance my body with all respects of fitness, cardiovascular, strength and stretching. Honestly, I didn’t realize I trained seasonally until I sat down to review the prior year. In January through April, I enjoy focusing on strength training and running, but also restorative stretching with the foam roller to help with recovery. In May through September, I enjoy swimming, bike riding and I switch up my classes for fun dance parties as well as jumping on the trampoline with my daughters. In the fall, I transition to focus on stretching and yoga for reducing muscle tension which helps me mindfully move into the holiday season with patience and grace. Keep in mind, I love to cross train year round, but I have defiantly identified that training seasonally helps to improve fitness
In closing, note I didn’t give you a pretty exercise prescription of what the surgeon general’s recommendations are for fitness. I didn’t give you clear cut answer to what you should do, when you should do it, how you should do it. I offered you a set of questions to answer yourself, to encourage you to mentally marinate on to help you define your fitness program. We are not all the same, and I firmly believe that no two workout programs are going to be the same. I strive to treat everyone individually as unique beautiful beings!