Getting fit means different things to different people; some are focused on going down a certain number of jeans sizes, while others want to increase muscle mass or get extra definition. But if your goal is simply to be generally healthier and lose some weight, here are some tips that can help the average person commit to a better lifestyle:
- Start With a Resting Metabolic Rate Test
There are several kinds of resting metabolic rate tests, but the goal of all of them is the same: to find out how many calories your body would burn if you rested for a full 24 hours. This number should be the starting point for creating a sustainable food plan. Most people — especially those who have sedentary lifestyles and eat pre-prepared foods — don’t have a good handle on how their calorie intake matches up with their output. Just remember to recalculate as you increase your exercise regimen so that you know your body is getting the nutrients it needs.
- Try Low-Impact Exercises
If you’ve had trouble sticking to a workout program before because you experience pain from going to the gym and don’t want to return in the following days, you may want to start with a low-impact exercise form such as Pilates classes. While you’ll experience muscle soreness any time you use areas of your body that have been previously underworked, low-impact forms minimize joint pain and allow you to customize movements to your current fitness level.
- Get Personal Training
Personal training isn’t only for people who want bulging muscles; personal training is all about creating accountability and support. Your trainer will not only show you the best exercises for the results you want, but also enforce a training schedule. It’s important that you communicate with your trainer and find one who matches your motivation style; some people work better when they are encouraged, while others work harder in response to being challenged.
- Find Active Hobbies
Instead of just adding an hour of gym time to your daily routine, try to actually change your lifestyle to be less sedentary. Find hobbies that are active so that your leisure time is spent outdoors, rather than sitting in front of a glowing screen.
- Utilize Physical Therapists
If you’re regularly experiencing pain from exercise, you may need to see a physical therapist. You may have only thought of physical therapy as it relates to people being rehabilitated after accidents or surgeries, but the more general goal of physical therapy is actually to improve motion and function in anyone who needs it.
Have you ever had a resting metabolic rate test? Did you find out that your calorie consumption was way off? Join the discussion in the comments.