Exercise is critical to getting and staying healthy, we all know this. Yet how many people actually translate this knowledge into real action. The number of people who actually work out on a regular basis is greatly outnumbered by the number of people who never exercise. From procrastination to sheer rejection of the concept and need for exercise, we have a range of other fears and excuses. People are afraid they will look stupid, or that they are too old to begin, or they are scared to try something new, or that they can never make the time. There are as many excuses as there are people who just do not exercise.
All of us are a sum of our thoughts. Our attitudes create our reality. The power of our mind allows us to achieve, evolve and grow. Despite being aware of all of this, many people are controlled by their fears, self imposed limitations and poor self image. Worse, we feel that we do not need to change a single thing unless something drastic happens. But why wait for diseases and discomfort to do the right thing I ask. Harnessing your mental power and positive thoughts alone can go a long way in getting you on track to understanding your body and what it needs whether it is the right choice of foods or the physical exertion it requires to stay fit and strong.
There are a few things you need to know about when you begin any form of exercise:
• You should find an exercise that you like to do. It’s okay to experiment and find out what you really like. But don’t give up mid way because it’s too hard or not exactly what you thought it would be. Give it a chance. Often we grow to like things. If not, you can always switch.
• You can begin with something as simple as brisk walking for 30 to 45 minutes every day. Increase the exertion levels as you begin to get comfortable.
• If you are above 40 or have any medical condition, please consult with your doctor before getting into any program.
• Always look for a gym or fitness centre that is conveniently located near your workplace or your home. This will ensure that you attend regularly.
• At the gym, make sure it is well equipped, clean, well ventilated and aligns with your personality. Also ensure that they follow all Covid health and hygiene protocols seriously.
• Gym instructors, trainers must be professionally accredited and certified. It’s okay to ask your trainer about his/her qualifications.
• Get the right exercise gear – good shoes are a must, and breathable fabrics for your workout wear are important.
• Work within your fitness level. It’s okay not to push yourself too much. Certain level of discomfort is required but not pain. You will be able to do more intense and frequent workouts when you get stronger. This will also help avoid injuries.
• It’s possible that you will avoid certain machines because you do not know how to work it. Just remember everyone, including the trainer, had to start where you are right now. So, please ask for help freely.
• Keep yourself hydrated. Eat consciously. Make choices at all levels with some thought to your wellbeing.
• Warm up and cool down are important aspects of your training. Ensure that your trainer is teaching you these aspects correctly.
• Do not be intimidated. Once you get the basics, you will begin to enjoy your routine and look forward to newer challenges in your workout level.
• Time is short for almost everyone. Yet finding time to do things that are important for your wellbeing is crucial. Besides, exercise and diet are basic ways of showing your body that you care.
• Regular exercise is certain to bring huge changes in your life – you will have more energy and a sense of wellbeing inside out to do things with greater love and focus.
• Have a music playlist that you enjoy working out to.
• Schedule a session with a personal trainer to get you started, and worth the investment.