In each article my aim is to provide you with as much information that I feel is useful towards living and fit healthy sustainable lifestyle.To be quite honest the fitness industry nowadays is perhaps full of more misleading information more than ever and my goal from starting this column was to give you real honest truth about fitness.Like I have said before in previous articles fitness to me isn’t just about lifting weights,going for a run or even eating your broccoli. There is a far more bigger and broader picture to it and that’s what I try to cover each week.As I approach my 50th article in the column I have broken down almost everything the past while from nutrition advice,the most effective training styles,plenty of summer series articles to the even the best and healthy ways to living a healthy lifestyle.Each week the feedback really is great and is something that gives me plenty of motivation knowing that its helping a good few of you out.
In this weeks piece my aim is to try and breakdown some areas that will give you a little checklist helping you out keeping you on track.
- Pick something that you will enjoy first
There really is no point in doing something that is going to be a chore for you.Over the last 10 years of working in a gym I would see people join in the new year signing into yearly long memberships already knowing that hate gyms and they pretty much have done this route before and have gotten nowhere with it.The goal for you to do something exercise related that will be a part of your day that you actually will get enjoyment from.
- Training matches the goal
I’ve seen all sorts of training programs over the years including strength, sport-specific, bodybuilding, weight-loss and weight-gain routines.A pretty big thing I come across quite often is training programs not matching up with the actual goal intended.I don’t always blame the individual for that.There is a lot of misleading information out there nowadays.It’s great that you are following a fitness plan but make sure whatever goal you’re working on matches well with the training you’re doing, and that it’s at your fitness level.If you are unsure the best thing is to seek out a trainer that has a good pedigree and a proven track record of working with clients face to face not some instagram trainer selling their programs who might look shredded but really has little to no experience when it comes to helping different individuals needs
- Don’t get sidetracked
A lot of the time I see people saying this or that program didn’t work for them.Any time I get clients in who seem to hop from trainer to trainer or program to program I get a red flag.To be honest a lot of the time its not the trainer,gym or program that didn’t work but its that you didn’t actually put too much work in for the approach itself. I have always said if you are working with a good trainer for instance that’s its always a 50/50 approach with client and trainer or if you are working on a certain program yourself and it hasn’t really worked its perhaps because you didn’t stay long on it and really weren’t consistent enough when it came to sticking to the plan.There is so many avenues nowadays from paleo to CrossFit,spinning to vegan but the bottom line is anything will really work once you just stick to the plan,enjoy it and put in the work required.
- Have a smart and realistic approach
We should be taking a long term health approach to exercise yet too many want the ‘easy’ quick fix.The quick fix isn’t realistic a lot of the time and perhaps not the smartest or best approach either.Your fitness is something to be working on for the rest of your life and in order to be living a fit and healthy lifestyle means its something that you should be constantly working on.Big deal if you fall off the wagon a little bit.Get back up and go again aiming to get to grips with all the basics that will work long term keeping you in check.
Sleep: Shooting for eight hours is a good start.
Stress: Invest at least 15 minutes each day to yourself, slow down, breathe, stretch and just switch off. It could be doing some yoga poses, going for a walk or playing with your kids.
Hydration: Aim for 2.5-4 litres daily. Little and often throughout the day.
Nutrition: There is no single diet solution for everyone. We have different metabolisms so it is really important to work out a diet plan that works for you. Focus on getting the basics right first; cut out the junk food, go easy on the wheat, gluten and sugar, and keep alcohol and caffeine in moderation.
- Don’t rule it out until you have tried it
This is an area I was guilty of in my earlier days.A lot of the time its the basic stuff we really need and not the most fancy,intense or complicated training plans.Things like yoga,doing some mobility work,practicing some meditation or even bringing in basic low intensity active recovery sessions into my gym work were always ruled out until I seen the importance of it eventually with time and experience.Growing up I always felt that quantity always beat quality and that high volume/intensity was the best approach for my training.When your younger your a little naive.I guess I didn’t always appreciate the other areas that might just be more beneficial to me and this is a common trend I hear a lot from people being around the fitness industry a while.Normally these areas spring up when its a little late or a time you actually need it most.If I could turn the clock back I would try to listen to my body better,structure my training week a little better leaving out a high intensity piece and bringing in some yoga or mobility work instead.Vary your training up or try things that totally bring in a new fresh approach for you.
You can also see some of his previous articles here.