Reaching your fitness goals

Setting the goal of getting in shape is a wonderful start, but what do you do to make that goal become a reality for you? Many people find that it can be hard to know where to get started.

It will maximize your chances of success if you take some time to think about what your goals are. What would you like to accomplish? Perhaps there is a certain amount of weight you would like to lose, or a certain body mass index you would like to reach. Maybe your goal is to successfully complete a marathon, or to develop a habit of regularly exercising four times a week for several months in a row. Whatever your goals are, identify them and make them as specific as possible. Write them down and put them in a place that you will be likely to see often, such as in your kitchen or on your bathroom mirror.

Getting in shape involves eating well. Most of us do not eat the healthiest diet – fast food is convenient, and it can be very tempting to buy already prepared food from the store. Food from restaurants or the store, however, is much more likely to be high in fat and sabotage your fitness goals. A general rule of thumb is that you cannot eat what you do not have, so head to the supermarket and stock up on healthy foods. Fruits and veggies are always a good bet, and make wonderful mid morning or mid afternoon snacks.

You may already have identified an exercise routine that you would like to engage in. If not, try a variety of different types of physical activity to help you find a routine that works best for you. Take a dance or group fitness class, or take your dog for a run. If you live in a place with mountains, you may enjoy hiking. There are likely to be intramural sports teams in your town that you could possibly join.

Keep a food journal. Go to the store and buy a note-book where you will keep a record of every single thing that you eat. It may surprise you to see what an average day’s worth of meals and snacks look like! Many people find that when they keep a food journal, they become much more aware of what they eat and consequently find themselves making healthier food choices. Likewise, keep an exercise log where you record each time you workout. It will likely help motivate you to see your progress tracked out like this, and you may find that you are less likely to skip workout sessions.

Getting in shape will take dedication and persistance on your part, and there may be times when you just want to quit. The more you work out, though, the more it will become a habit for you. As you soon start to see the benefits of regular exercise, you will likely find yourself more committed to sticking with your fitness goals.