Let’s face it, you have gotten out of shape. Summer is coming up and you are feeling slow and sluggish but you are scared of the long journey ahead of you. Getting back into shape where you want to be is not easy! That being said though, if you take to make slow but gradual progress, increasing your fitness level and dropping those extra pounds are not that hard. The best part is that you do not need to go get a gym membership. Just combine some of the below suggestions into your daily life and before you know it, you will be much healthier.
Jump On A Bike
Almost everyone has a bike laying around the house. Perhaps it has not been used in the last century, but you more than likely have one! Get it out and use it. Biking is a great way to get in extra cardio without feeling like you want to die. You can enjoy bike rides with the family, or go see the country side by yourself. Not only a stress releaser, biking is one of the easiest cardio exercises on your joints that you can do.
I personally like to take my bike to the grocery store to get certain ingredients for recipes I want to try out that day. Doing this a few times a week will really burn extra calories that you would not have gotten rid of before. The weight will slowly melt off because you are adding in a fun and health conscious decision into your daily routine. Just remember to keep your bike locked up if you are in a public place. Fit Clarity has a great article on which type of lock you should buy which you can see here.
Try New Recipes
Getting back into shape is not always about exercise. You can exercise all you want but if your diet is not in check, then you not make any progress. Just because food is considered “healthy” does not mean that it does not have to taste great!
Try adding more lean fish and lean meat into your diet (which you can go pick up on your bike). Try out a different diet. Perhaps low carb would work for you? Low carb eating gave me an abundance of energy I never knew I had before.
Always try to load up on your veggies before you eat the main portion of your meal. This will help fill you up on less calories, but you will also get essential nutrients that will help fuel you all day long on your quest for being in shape.
Whatever you do, just try to stay away from the real fattening choices and fast food. Cut out drinking your calories, as these are just wasted calories. If you can do these two things, you are already more healthy than the majority of the country.
Try A Home Workout
Working out is actually one of my greatest stress relievers. I really used to hate it! I seriously dreaded each time that I forced myself to go workout. That is because I was doing exercises which I did not like!
Find something that you enjoy to do that is active. This can be anything you want. Try joining a local club, play Frisbee, take your kids to the park, go for a walk around your neighborhood, literally anything.
I found one day that I really liked lifting after I had never set foot in a gym and my buddy took me. If this is something you might want to try but are afraid of the gym, do not fret! You could get a set of dumbbells for your home and use them whenever is convenient to you. You will end up saving some money in the long run, and will be able to tone up, build strength and endurance, and become more confident in your abilities before you might consider hitting the gym. You can read more about that here.
Before I got into the gym, I tried a home workout called Insanity which is basically a corny DVD workout that is mainly cardio targeted with body weight exercises included. I thought this was kind of strange until I finished it after 2 months. My cardiovascular health was the best it had ever been! Just do yourself a favor and start trying different activities which involve you moving. Your health will thank you!
Wrapping It Up
Do not think you need to jump into everything at once! Fitness and health is more of a marathon than a sprint. Just take small steps. If you try biking but can only go once a week, just do that! After you get more comfortable, you can try biking for longer or exploring new areas.
If your diet is really awful but you want to start making healthy recipes, you do not have to fully give up the food you are already eating. Start by making 1 or 2 healthy meals a week and make a conscious attempt to eat less of the bad food. Sooner or later, you will see the progress you are making and fully commit to a healthy lifestyle. And don’t forget your supplements if you feel you aren’t getting all the nutrients you should. Save on the supplements to get you started.
Only when you have the eating down can you focus on fitness. Fitness has been my outlet to reduce stress for a long time now. I hope it can be yours as well. The key here is finding what you enjoy. If you do not enjoy it, you will never keep the habit.
Best of luck in your goals to get back in shape! Let me know in the comments what you have done to get “back on the horse” so to speak.