Top tips for getting started with exercise

Our resident trainer, Tara Leyden, takes us through changing your head in order to change your body.

There are so many different reasons why people don't get started, and with all of them the underlying word is Fear. Fear of the diet, fear of the gym, fear of getting on the

 scales, fear of judgement from others, fear of failure and so on. But fear can be your friend...without fear the challenge is not half as much fun.

Think of a rollercoaster...the thought can be terrifying but once you face that fear and take the ride you feel exhilarated! Fear is just a thought in your head, not the reality. A thought can be changed, a fear can be faced and the outcome will be your success. So let's get started! 

‘Getting started’ needs a plan. It is fundamental to achieve your goal. Without a plan you have no start point and your journey will be long and drawn out which will leave you feeling lost and potentially give you an excuse to call it a day so let's get a plan together and get started.  

1. Inspiration...this is the key for achieving anything in life. Think back to anything you have done in the past that you don't feel inspired to do. You most likely ended up not enjoying it or completely giving up. Now think of something that inspired you, something you loved and you will see that in those moments of love inspiration flows and you don't mind the work you put into achieving your goal. Now maybe you're not inspired at the thought of dieting or exercise but I bet the thought of changing the look of your body or increasing your fitness level does inspire you. So there you go.... that's what you focus on. Start to imagine your ideal you, not the top model you've just seen in your favourite health and fitness magazine.  Become the best possible version of you!

2. Love who you are now...If you don't love and respect yourself then you will not succeed....end of! Find something on your body you like best. If it's your legs then say out loud, "Hey I've got great legs!" It might feel strange to you at first but keep it up regularly and it won't be long before your positive attitude towards that one part of your body has you feeling more positive about yourself overall. The positive energy you feel encourages you to make further improvements not only to your body but your mental attitude, your health and your relationships.

3. Break down your goal...To focus on improving all areas of your body in one go can leave you feeling overwhelmed.  If weight loss is your goal you will naturally lose body fat from all areas as you diet, but if there are a couple of untoned areas on your body that you favour less then give your main focus to them with exercise. I'm not saying don't work on the other areas too, but when you see improvement in the areas less favourable you will feel motivated to continue with your overall goal. Same goes with diet...if you enjoy three or four biscuits with your afternoon tea then try swapping the biscuits you currently eat for a healthier type.

4. Weight...Do not fear getting on the scales to get a start weight. Whether your goal is losing body fat or gaining muscle you need a starting point to keep track of where you are and what changes you may need to make as you go. Think of your starting weight like this...if you're serious about making positive changes it's the last time you will ever see that weight. And remember muscle weighs heavier than fat. Your weight will give you a guide but look at yourself in the mirror too. If you're doing everything you can to make a positive difference to your body then you will start seeing those changes so why not take a look at yourself, notice those changes and feel proud of your progress!

5. Make it fun...Pick a training activity that you will enjoy but also one that will help you achieve your goal. Then think about when you are going to train and the time given to training and make sure it is written in your diary. Try and stick to this schedule regularly where possible, this way it is more likely to become a habit.

If you're still not sure about 'Getting started'  try changing your thought process...succeed in your goal and be an inspiration to motivate others. No matter how challenging the process...to help and inspire others will make your whole journey so much more rewarding!


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