The fitness journey can be a lonely journey sometimes. It rewards you with highs and lows. In my time of training I have learned a few tips that I would love to briefly share with you as it pertain to getting the most out of your fitness journey and becoming a better you.
1. Get Your Mind Right
The first thing in anything you do is deciding that you are going to actually do it. You can’t walk unless you first decide to take a step. You can’t get fit unless you first decide that you need to do so. I am learning that it is not just what you want, it’s what you are desperate for. There are a lot of people that want to change, but not many who are desperate for a change. Many people declare that they want the Lord, but “As the deer pants for the water, so my soul longs after thee” sparks the real motivation for growth.
2. REWARD Yourself
Each and every week I engage in what I call “Reward Meals” (others in the fitness industry call these cheat meals, but I don’t like that term because I am not cheating on my fitness journey just rewarding it). However, taking the time out for simple rewards and pleasures can refresh you along the way. It provides personal satisfaction of knowing that I have had a successful week and provides the vital ingredient of celebrating small victories.
3. RELAX, RELATE, RELEASE
There are tons of research of the value of sleep as it pertains to the benefits sleep has with overall performance. Without getting too technical, sleep has an amazing effect on recharging your brain for the next day. Our bodies goes in and out of sleep cycles, which are about 90 minutes in length. During these sleep cycles there is a delivery of protein to your muscles for repair and growth. So sleeping is a very important thing, one that should not be avoided but rather embraced.
4. CHANGE IT UP
As you know our bodies are highly adaptable. In order for you not to hit plateaus, you have to be sure to change it up from time to time. I observe some people each time they enter the gym, who hit the same equipment, routines, etc. I can almost predict where they will go next. Now if I can do that how do you think your body predicts what you are about to do. (We are about to do 3 sets on bench, move to 3 sets to incline, to….etc) God has equipped our bodies to adapt to a lot, and if you really want to see “change” take your body through a series of shocks, by changing up what you do and how you do it.
5. STRETCH It Out
The older I get the more important this has become in my life. Stretching helps to improve your overall flexibility and range of motion. Another good benefit is that stretching allows you to get your game face on. When you begin your stretching you realize that in a matter moments your work out will begin. Lastly, stretching has been key in the reduction of soreness after my workouts, so remember to stretch before and after.
6. CHALLENGE Yourself
The old adage, “no pain no gain” is so true. In everything in life we experience struggle before the growth. Toddlers experience the discomfort of teething, teens the discomfort before puberty; even the Bible speaks about the suffering that produces character (Romans 5:2-4). If you want to grow in your fitness journey you have to not be afraid to experience a little discomfort. Get out of your comfort zones and attack your discomfort, you will be happy you did.
7. REMEMBER YOUR “WHY”
Lastly, times will become difficult, you will not see the progress you want, but you have to remember why you began. Your why has to be greater than just trying to be “summertime fine” because a lifestyle of health and wellness is not limited to just the summer, it is year round. Personally, my why is to “Glorify God With My Fitness/Health/Finances.” Sometimes we get off based but when you remember your why, it will help fuel you to where you want to go.
Join the conversation
Which of these tips really struck a chord with you? What’s your best fitness advice?