When a woman is healthy and fit, she can pursue her career with dedication and honesty. But she always tends to ignore her health and fitness and go on living only for others. And the end result is that she cannot concentrate on her career.
Each one of us needs to make a commitment to ourselves, our families and to each other, to live the healthiest lifestyles we can. For no matter what your wealth, status, looks, or the size of your jeans, your health is your greatest asset. Commitment to exercise on a daily basis is easier said than done. However, even with our busy lifestyles, our work, our kids, our other commitments, it is achievable!
What is the secret to achieving success in fitness? How do you incorporate fitness into your daily schedule and stick with it? We can overcome the many obstacles we face, or more directly, overcome the many excuses we create for not exercising when we follow some key principles regarding fitness.
The goals must be achievable and realistic. Most importantly, for the long haul, you must be motivated by the internal desire to be healthy because it feels great, not because your waistline will shrink. Goals such as, “I will lose 30 pounds in six weeks for that wedding,” are inappropriate and unachievable, not to mention, ‘externally focused’. With a goal such as this, you will eventually fail because the goal is unrealistic. Or even worse, you will lose weight too fast, and once the wedding is over, it will all come back because you were not motivated past the date of the wedding. Finally, remember to reward yourself once you have achieved your goals, and then set new ones.
Each of us has a body type, a shape, a genetic gift that is ours. We may have shapely hips, strong muscular legs, or an ample bustline, and this is part of who we are. Accepting yourself for your genetic gifts, while giving yourself continual positive feedback such as ‘I am strong’ and ‘I have a curvaceous figure as all women are meant to have’, will go a long way to making you feel good about yourself. Negative self-talk achieves no purpose. It hurts us and makes us feel weak and as if we are failures. Once we feel good about ourselves on the inside and outside, we can overcome any minor setbacks that may arise as we move forward in our fitness.
This may seem like a simple idea, but many people actually think they must suffer through exercises in order to be successful. The exact opposite is true if you want to find success. If you choose an exercise that you truly dislike, you will dread your exercises session, and hence, you won’t do it! So, if you hate running – don’t run! In order to address all aspects of good health, you need to incorporate all components of fitness – cardiovascular endurance, strength training, flexibility, nutrition. Even if you dislike one of these aspects, there are ways to sneak a little in here and there. By incorporating many different types of exercises including lots of varieties in your program, you will also be ‘cross training’, a proven way to beat boredom and reduce the risk of overuse injuries.
Our lives are often so hectic that we rarely have extra time to go to the grocery store, let alone exercise. Exercise can be pushed to a low priority when we become too busy. You must learn to manage your time more wisely, making exercise a top priority. If you analyse your current schedule, you will find places where you can insert an exercise session. Many people find exercising in the morning to be a good way to help them stick with their exercise routine, but if that time is not open, you can exercise anytime during the day.
So, many new exercisers make the mistake of thinking, “If a little exercise is good, more is better.” Even worse is this thinking: “If eating less makes me lose weight, eating even less will make me lose weight even faster.” Both these ideas set you up for failure and possible injury and illness. Overtraining can create injuries. They can result in pulled muscles, shin splints, knee, foot and back problems. Under-eating results in low energy, vitamin and mineral deficiency, which may cause chronic sickness, slowing of your metabolism, and increased risk of injury. Occasional bouts of self-imposed starvation or bingeing and purging can lead to serious eating disorders.
Changing our physical health takes time. Anyone that promises ‘quick, guaranteed results’ is not telling the whole truth, and does not have your best interests at heart. They are only out to make money at your expense. Depending on your initial fitness level, creating positive changes in your health can take months, sometimes up to a year. This is not to be pessimistic – this is the truth.
While some people manage to find fitness success on their own, many of us flounder through a lengthy trial-and–error process. We figure out how to achieve our goals. Finding a knowledgeable fitness professional to help can dramatically speed up this process. Make sure that you seek advice from a certified or accredited fitness professional with references, if applicable. While books, the internet, or TV, often provide information about health and fitness, not all of it is grounded in science as it should be. Your best bet is to establish a one-to-one relationship with a gym, nutritionist or personal trainer who will provide you with healthy advice.
Remember to always check with your doctor before beginning any new exercise program.
This piece has been earlier published on the author’s personal blog.