Having the mindset to exercise and getting yourself to the gym is half of the battle. Many people begin their fitness journeys with gargantuan goals but little patience, not understanding that results will occur with passing time, and not after running for 20 minutes on the treadmill. Patience is the key element to long term goals. Nothing about exercising is easy. The confidence to be viewed publicly, pushing through pain and soreness, and being repetitive at times are the costs to achievement. These are 20 tips for getting fit and healthy!
Spread your workouts out at the gym, and never stack them on top of each other and look at the big picture to overwhelm yourself. Think about the gym as an art gallery. Walking and admiring various pieces of art takes patience, and being able to focus on the little details of each piece makes the big picture more memorable. If you wish to start with cardio, only be aware that you will be running for 20 minutes, not that you’ll be at the gym for 120. This way, you will focus on your running and your running only, and the time will go by faster.
My second piece of advice is, do not care what others will think of you when you are trying a new exercise that might look odd, or be embarrassed of yourself at the gym. Trust me, not everyone at the gym is Arnold Schwarzenegger and are better than you are. They are there working towards their own goals and so are you, that is it. Having confidence makes you more inclined to go back to the gym, and makes your exercising more enjoyable as you increase your reps and begin to become an expert in certain areas of exercise.
Lastly, no matter how you feel on a given day, don’t make excuses to miss a gym day. Excuses come in all shapes and sizes, and as Freud would say are defense mechanisms to prove to yourself that you are making the right choice. Just because there is an ice cream waiting for you in your room, doesn’t mean you should go straight from class to your room because it will melt if you don’t eat it right away. Excuses are the primary blockades of goals. That six pack isn’t there not because you don’t want it, but because you skipped the gym 3 days in a row without knowing.
Now, exercise is twenty five percent of being fit, while the other 75 percent is nutrition. Eating healthily is not only aesthetically pleasing to the social media that will know about it, but makes you feel lighter and with more energy. There are varying degrees to eating healthy. Some take up vegetarianism, some take up veganism, some even go paleo. There is not one correct way of eating healthy as long as you know exactly what you are putting into your body.
It does not matter if you cannot see the damage; internal damage not only erases any workout that you have accomplished, but will catch up to your metabolism and weaken vital organs. I am on a bodybuilding journey with a strict diet where I cannot eat anything processed, and must count my macros each day. It took awhile to get to this point, but being healthy does not always mean jumping to an extreme.
Eliminate a dessert a week that you would normally eat, and replace it with a fruit of a lower glycemic index. Fruit has an endless list of vitamins necessary for the body, but overdoing anything is an unhealthy habit, as fruit does contain sugar. It helps to do research on foods of certain nutrition content to help educate yourself on the portion size that you should be eating and how often you should be eating certain foods. Not everyone eats the same way, depending on activity level, goals, and body type, people adopt different eating habits to help themselves achieve or maintain.
Do not compare yourself to others and remember that your body is what you put in it, so make it happy and treat it right. Take progress pictures of yourself at least once a week and compare yourself each week to see what has changed. Looking at other people is misleading because others can be at different points in their fitness journeys, along with having different goals, body types, etc. Watch your own results unfold.
To eat nutritiously, look at the labels and make sure to watch the sugar content, and ingredients list in processed foods if you are to eat them. The shorter the list of ingredients, the better. Once the ingredients list stretches longer than the ucard line at freshmen orientation, it is best to put it down.
Get creative by finding substitutes for a typical unhealthy meal that you like, and cook yourself. For example, instead of eating a bowl of pasta which contains many starchy carbs, fat, and calories, substitute it for zucchini pasta with tomato and cucumbers. There are an infinite amount of ways to be creative with food, which makes nutrition fun and addicting, and who doesn’t want to be addicted to eating healthy?
Friends are common motivators to do anything, even eating healthy. Try to find a group of like-minded friends who have similar goals that you have to eat nutritiously. You can motivate each other and keep each other on track when times get tough.
A lot of advice especially for dining halls in college points towards filling half of your plate with vegetables before anything else. This way, you are getting in the vegetables you should be eating, and simultaneously cutting out that unhealthy meal that you would usually get.
This is another college specific piece of advice. Before you put anything on your plate when in the dining hall, take a lap to see everything. This way, you will have a specific idea of what you want instead of overeating and taking one of everything.
Nothing about adopting a healthy lifestyle is completely easy, and as long as you have your goals catalyzed by your ambitious nature to work hard, no task will be daunting for you.
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