Deciding to get healthy and live a healthier life is something to be extremely proud of. So many people know that they should be living healthier but still refuse to, even if they have been told that the consequence for not becoming healthy is fatal.
Whatever reason you have decided or are already in the process to become healthier, be proud of yourself and pat yourself on the back! You have done the most difficult part… getting started.
I have been a personal trainer for almost four years now. I have trained many different people with many different goals, but everyone was there for one reason: their health. That can mean different things like losing weight, gaining muscle, preventing a condition or disease, or just getting active.
The most common type of client that I have helped is either weight loss or general fitness. I am specialized in weight loss and fitness nutrition and these types of clients are my favorite to work with, especially when they are motivated and willing to do whatever I want them to do.
It can be tough to figure out where to start, what exactly to do, who should you believe, and the like. I decided to write this post for whomever may need to read it. If you need some basic advice as you are starting your health journey, you have come to the right place because I am about to drop some serious knowledge nuggets on you! I hope you’re ready!
- Write down your goals and make them specific. Read my post about goal setting here to get started and become a pro at SMART goals!
- Baby steps! I know that you want to workout five times per week for three hours each day, eat spinach for every single meal, drink 100oz of water, and drink protein shakes during all hours of the day, but you cannot start off like that. If you haven’t exercised in over a decade then I have some unfortunate news and some tough lovin’ for you. You are not going to be able to workout for that long to start with and that is okay. Don’t be hard on yourself. When you go overboard and try to do everything at once, you will become overwhelmed and eventually burnt out.
- Lift weights. Even if you want to lose weight, you need to be doing strength training! Losing weight is not just doing a ton of cardio and calorie counting. When you build muscle, you increase your metabolism, which then helps you burn fat. Cardio is hardio, anyways.
- Talk to a doctor. You really should see your doctor before you start any sort of exercise program or diet program. If you want to do something extreme like the Keto diet for example, then you DEFINITELY should talk to your doctor before you partake.
- Hire a trainer. I am not saying that just because I am a trainer. A trainer will help keep you accountable. I recommend hiring a trainer outside of your gym, mainly because gyms usually don’t pay trainers well for the amount you pay the gym for personal training. If you hire a trainer who is self-employed, you can be sure that every cent of what you pay is going straight to the trainer. Anyways, they make the best accountability buddies and they will probably make you hate them but you will love them, too.
- Don’t believe everything you read or see, especially on the ‘Gram (Instagram, I am talking about Instagram). Many people on social media believe everything they read or see and then they repost it. It is terrible. Always make sure to do your research, fact check, and do not trust everyone on social media who claims to be a professional. My rule of thumb is that if it is too good to be true, then it probably is not true!
- Do what you want and what you enjoy. Don’t let someone force you into doing something you don’t like because then you’re going to hate it. So many people are quick to tell people how to go about this because they did it and it worked for them. Truthfully, you might not even like it. Just do what makes you happy! If you love spin class and meal replacement shakes, do it! If you are a gym type person and want to eat completely organic, do it! If you want to join a bootcamp class out in the park with other dance moms and juice (meaning make your own juice, not shooting up steroids), then do it! You need to enjoy what you do or else you won’t want to do it.
I have so much more advice to give than just this, but this is the start. It is important to build your foundation for this healthy lifestyle and it needs to be a strong foundation! Or else it will eventually fall apart and you will have to work twice as hard to put it back together.
People who do not build strong, solid foundations for their healthy lifestyle are typically the ones who give up on their goals and make up excuses. And you are not a quitter, are you?
Yeah, I didn’t think so!
I wear a lot of hats; NASM Certified Personal Trainer, Weight Loss Specialist, and Fitness Nutrition Specialist; wife; fur mom; writer; college student; mental health advocate; pet sitter; Airman; athlete; and many more. I love my home in the southwest and my favorite season is summer. I am a sepsis survivor and I battle with generalized anxiety disorder and depression.