Welcome to January! As stated in earlier blogs, this is the month when fitness sales and memberships skyrocket as everyone starts to make good on their New Year’s resolutions. So here are a few tips to help you get started if you’ve made a resolution to improve your fitness this year.
· Get a physical before you decide to hit the gym and get physical. This is important because if there are some physical exercises you should avoid due to any current health conditions, you need to know this.
· Do it right, learn the right techniques – A lot of gyms will provide you with a complimentary session or two with a fitness trainer. They can show you how to use the equipment as well as give you pointers on building a fitness program.
· Stretch More – Suffer Less – Warming up and cooling down are essential to any good workout program. A lot of people think they can skip over the warm up and cool down sessions, but if you are interested in avoiding injury then make a point of doing both.
· Breath Counts – Breathing is important. You should use good focused breathing so that you don’t get dizzy or overdo it. You should exhale with the effort. For example, if you are doing a leg press, you should exhale as you extend your legs and press, inhaling on the relaxing motion of lowering the weights.
· More is not better – Too many people who are getting started will overdo their workouts. A regular routine of working out should be a natural progression. Work lower body one day, upper body the next and core the third if you are interested in working out every day. If you want to do an every other day schedule, then be sure to include a cardio and strength building component. By moderating and building it up through progression, you avoid injury, which can delay your progress.
· Variety is the Spice of Life – Routine is good, but when you vary the routine you can keep yourself interested and motivated. Also, the human body is capable of adapting to any routine within four to six weeks. You can avoid over training as well as create an overall balance by varying the workout.
· Pain is Not Gain – If it HURTS, it’s not helping you. Exercise can be to the point of ‘failure,’ which means you can’t lift it anymore or ‘fatigue’, which means you’re too tired to lift it anymore. Feeling severe pain when you perform an exercise indicates you may be inflicting an injury on yourself. Pain is how we moderate our behavior.
· H2O is Vital to the Equation – The human body is largely composed of water. When you are active, you need to replace the water in your system. It’s important for you to stay hydrated. Also, by drinking 64 to 96 ounces of water daily, you can trim back on your hunger cravings. A lot of the time, your body mistakes being thirsty for being hungry – craving food with water content in order to hydrate.
These tips can help you make the most of your exercise resolution and reduce your chances for injury. So whether you are looking at getting in shape, losing weight or just feeling better about yourself. Do right by your workout and it will do right by you.