I want to exercise but I don’t know where to start.
Does this sound like you?
Starting a new health and fitness plan can be really overwhelming. Sometimes the hardest part is actually getting started.
Some of us don’t actually know how they can squeeze fitness into their already busy lives! *waves* This was me for a while, but I’ve worked out which ‘workout’ and exercise options are best for my lifestyle! Now I’m back on the fitness wagon and it doesn’t eat into my busy life. I feel amazing for it!
If you want to exercise but find that you’re too busy, you don’t know where to start, you can’t afford to workout or can’t get childcare etc…then read on!
The First Step? Figure Out Your Excuses
Before you begin exercising or creating a fitness plan, you need to work out what excuses may have prevented you from exercising before, or which ones could stop you from exercising in the future. Over the last year I have fallen into the following categories.
- Starts a fitness plan but stops it after a few days.
- Wants to start doing more exercise but makes a million excuses of why I can’t right now.
- Doesn’t know what workouts would benefit me
- Starts a fitness plan but stops it after a few days or weeks
- Is afraid of looking silly
- Can’t afford to workout
- Can’t get childcare
- Doesn’t know if they’re doing it right
Which one can you relate to the most?
Guess what? The good news is that all of these excuses will be banished by the end of this post. If you want to get fit, toned, more healthy, lose a couple of pounds or whatever it is than you’re aiming for, then YOU CAN. No excuses. Think hard about the reasons you can’t exercise or may not be able to in the future, and see which options in this post will combat that excuse.
So, the very first thing you need to do on your new fitness journey is to workout how you want to get fit.
So, How Do You Want To Get Fit?
The first thing you should know is that you don’t need a gym membership to workout. You really don’t. Those that are fearful of the gym or can’t afford it, you can rejoice now!
Needing a gym membership is a common misconception and a great big excuse to not do exercise! Yes a gym membership can be great purely for all the machines that they have and the potential option of a personal trainer. But, if the gym isn’t an option for you for whatever reason, then you please know that you can actually do amazing workouts, lose weight, tone up and feel overall healthier, without even ever going to a gym.
Here Are Some Gym Alternatives:
Workout DVD’s – There are so many workout DVD’s available and for great prices. They can be done in the comfort of your own home and with so many people sharing their results online, you have some great motivation to keep them up.
Apps – There are fitness apps available on ipads, your laptop and even on your phone. I use both a yoga and pilates app and can thank both of them for helping me to re-tone my body after pregnancy. What’s great about an app is that they can be used anywhere at anytime and are an inexpensive way to workout wherever you like.
Youtube – I am obsessed with youtube workouts. The 30 days shred, Blogilates, XHIT and Rebeccas Louise are a few of my big favourites! A great plus is that you can find videos with whole workouts or videos that simply target specific areas of your body.
Home – Squat while you’re watching TV, do lunges on the way to the bathroom, run up and down your stairs, do crunches, leg drops, planks. You don’t even need equipment or technology to work out at home. Parents, did you know you can even do workouts with your babies and toddlers too?
Outdoors – Why not head outside and do some exercise? Go for a run, for a hike or a bike ride. Take up an outdoor sport. Find your local netball, football or tennis club. Swim in the sea. The options are endless.
Classes – See what exercise classes are in your area. Popular classes include spinning, yoga, pilates and zumba. Most classes take place at the same time every week and some weekly classes are as little as £5. Classes are also a great way to make some new friends!
Invest In Some Inexpensive Workout Gear
You don’t need expensive workout gear in order to exercise. No budget? Then an old t-shirt and leggings will do. If you are able to invest some money then I do recommend getting some comfortable workout clothes. Plus, if you’re heading to the gym then you will need some great fitting trainers to protect your feet while using different machines and weights.
If you’re thinking about working out at home, dependent on the type of exercise you want to do, you might want to invest in a yoga mat. They’re a lot nicer to be on than a rug, a towel or the floor.
If you plan on toning your body or doing more intense workouts, then getting some weights or kettle bells are also a great idea! There are some amazing, inexpensive deals around so browse before you buy!
Do Exercises You Enjoy
Just like us, exercise comes in all shapes and sizes. You will 100% find something out there that you find fun, that suits your lifestyle and motivates you to exercise. I personally love working out at home to youtube videos and apps, but I also love going to the gym either alone or with a friend for extra motivation.
People who start something that they’re not going to enjoy, usually end up giving up very quickly. Once upon a time, one of my good friends invited me along to a fitness class. I really wanted to go because it was working for her and she looked great. But when I got there I was so embarrassed because I am not in touch with my body at all.
The moves that were so basic for some I struggled to do. I looked like Bambi trying to walk for the first time. I was so embarrassed I never returned again. Sadly this experience also demotivated me and put me off exercise for a while, which is so silly because all I needed to do was find what works for me.
It’s ok to not enjoy some ways of working out, even if your friends swear by it. So long as you find something that you’re comfortable with and that is challenging for you, then you will be motivated to keep doing it!
Make Time To Workout
Having no time has always been my personal excuse for skipping exercise. But if getting healthier or being fit is important to you, then you will find time in your day to exercise.
I now wake up an hour earlier that I usually would so I can go to the gym. You might find that the perfect moment is during your child’s naptime, during your lunch break at work, or even in the evenings when you’re watching TV. It is important to set out regular time slots for exercise that you stick to for a little while. This is so that it becomes part of your everyday routine and eventually second nature!
Set Yourself Challenges
Create milestones and set yourself challenges and goals. This will give you focus, keep you motivated and will give you something to work towards.
I really recommend only setting small milestones and challenges at first. Small steps can make such a huge difference. Too often people set themselves goals that are unachievable. Unachievable goals will demotivate you and can actually put you off exercising altogether.
Work out what is an achievable goal for you. Maybe it’s going to the gym 5 days a week for a month? Maybe it’s losing 3 pounds. Or it might be something simple like being able to do more squats in your sets or going for longer on a cardio machine. Just make sure to reward yourself for each goal, challenge or milestone achieved before setting a new one!
Workout With A Friend
Working out with a friend can be really motivating! This week I’ve been getting up and getting to the gym for 7am. My friend has been joining me. Neither of us ever thought that we’d be able to get up that early and be out the house exercising. But after a few days we both feel amazing for it! It has really helped to have someone there to motivate each other and to encourage each other to push ourselves that little bit more.
Take It Slow & Enjoy Your Workout
Don’t forget to enjoy it! I am the first to say that I hate exercising. But, I really love the feeling when I reach a milestone and achieve another fitness goal. One thing I have learnt over the years is to take it slow. Working out should be something that is a part of your life and not something to do just for a short period of time in order to lose a few pounds.
Slow and steady really does win the race! Starting off slowly and making workouts a part of your normal routine is the best way to go about things. Over time you will see a massive increase in your strength, fitness levels and the way your body looks and feels. Remember, it takes 12 weeks to make something a habit, but 12 weeks really isn’t that long so keep pushing!
Are you starting out on a new fitness regime? Have you struggled to get started? Let me know in the comments where you are at the moment!