Start as you mean to go on. Once you’ve made the decision to get fit and make exercise a part of your lifestyle, then half of your work is done. The other half is to be consistent, set goals and to maintain a healthy diet. Easier said than done? Anyone who has tried to lose weight, or struggled with their fitness and nutrition can tell you it’s a struggle. However, the battle is usually more mental than physical. Here are a few mental hacks to get your mind in the game:
➡️ Start with mini workouts, no more than 5 minutes. Rather than obsessing about 30 minutes or hour long workouts, 5 minutes is manageable. Exercises that work the full-body is recommended. This can be squats, crunches, lunges or a brisk walk around the block. Often times you will find that you feel okay to do more. This is how you build stamina and strength with consistency over time.
➡️ Set realistic targets. When we begin a new fitness programme, we often set big goals for ourselves. However, we must be S. M.A.R.T – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time Bound. If you are tracking the number of steps you do in a day, start with an achievable number and aim to increase this daily over time. Most active adults can achieve between 7,500 and 9,999 steps a day.
Rather than obsessing over your weight loss on the scales, use an old pair of jeans or trousers that now fits comfortably well as an indication that you are well on your way to achieving your goals.
➡️ Have a plan B. If you miss your usual group exercise class, then do a short workout in the gym or at home. Always dress for your fitness session no matter what, so you are always prepared and not tempted to stray away from your fitness goals.
➡️ Don’t be afraid to switch things up. Make your workouts fun and challenging. Don’t get stuck in a rut! If something isn’t working out then try a different approach. There is so much you can do to keep fit and healthy and reach your goals.
➡️ Manage your dietary intake. The secret is not to consume more than you can burn.
➡️ Your body is not just for summer. Don’t wait for the warmer weather to get fit or reach your goals. Fitness is a journey for life. Plan ahead, manage your time and workouts that fit well with your weekly activities.