I’m really not a fan of working out. Although I know that getting in the gym is an important step to getting fit, I like to do something a little more engaging. But finding time in my busy schedule to coordinate a tennis match with a friend or even go for a hike is just beyond me right now. My friend just completed a half marathon and for me, that’s not my goal, but it did get me thinking I need to focus on getting healthy and shedding a few pounds.
But how do I get started at getting fit? Here are some of the baby steps I’m taking for getting back on track.
Move more. Mid-afternoon I always start to get a little sleepy. Lunch has settled in and the yawns begin. I take this opportunity to take a quick break from work and take a walk. When the weather is cooperative, I walk around the office buildings or to the neighborhood shops. If I need to stop for an errand on the way home, I try not to park right up close so I can get a few extra steps in. I also aim to walk after dinner as well so I don’t head straight to the couch with a full stomach.
Eat healthy. A lunch trip to the burger joint around the corner isn’t going to help me achieve my fitness goals. It’s not a necessary requirement to eat a kale salad right away at least, so I’m working to cut out high-fatty foods, salty snacks, and sweets. My goal is to eat small snacks/meals throughout the day so I’m not eating large lunches or dinners as well as trying to add fruits and/or vegetables to each meal. And yes, drink more water. You hear it all the time, but it’s true. Drinking water has so many positive effects on your body.
Plan meals. Besides helping me with grocery shopping, I know that I will eat healthier if I plan out my meals and snacks for the week. I’m hoping to do some prep work on Sunday evenings so that I’m ready for the week. Trainer Bob Harper recommends pre-making certain snacks and meals and putting them in right-size portion containers so you can just grab and go in the mornings. No more excuses… “I didn’t have time” or “I don’t feel like making anything.”
Monitor progress. I found a great app, MyFitnessPal that tracks your daily meals, water consumption, and exercise. I can set goals and monitor my progress. Just seeing how many calories are in some of the meals I eat is eye opening. I’ve added exercises to my profile such as “taking the stairs” and “20 min. brisk walk.” Like I said, I’m starting with baby steps.
Learn more. Learning about why I need to care about my health is the best motivation I need. Educating myself about nutrition and exercise will reconfirm my reasons for getting healthy. Yes, we all want to look better, but nothing beats feeling better.
I’m not an expert and don’t pretend to be one regarding fitness, diet, or getting healthy. I just hope that these tips I’ve used will help you move more and get fit. Do you have any other baby steps that I can incorporate into my plan?
Next month, I’ll let you know how I’m doing and the next steps I’m taking to improve my overall health.