How to Set Realistic Fitness Goals
For many of us, it’s virtually impossible to keep up a regular fitness regime because of our already overloaded schedules. I know firsthand how tough this can be. When my kids are home for the holidays from their boarding school in New Hampshire, it’s easy for me to keep active, but I spend most of my time corralling them here and there.
While the kids are around, I always excited to go out and do things with them, but as soon as they leave, I settle right back into my stationary routine. I sit at my desk for long hours trying to finish my masters degree program online, rarely taking a break to eat or sleep, let alone exercise.
However, I have gradually realized that the best way to get back into shape (and remain in shape!) is to set realistic goals for myself. I am probably never going to have a supermodel’s body, but I have discovered some realistic fitness tips and strategies that make me feel and look quite a bit better.
Here are some of my top suggestions:
The first step I found to getting into shape was setting reasonable and honest goals for myself. I knew I likely wasn’t going to make it to the gym everyday so I set my goal at going three to four times a week.
So far this has really worked and I have dropped a lot of weight. I have so much more energy and know that I wouldn’t have gone to the gym nearly as much if I had set myself unreasonable goals. Try and fit some form of exercise into your week that you know you will be able to both stick at and work into your schedule.
Don’t Overdo It
Of course you want to push yourself when you exercise, but don’t push yourself beyond your limits. When I first started working out I tried to do too much too soon, and ended up having to spend a lot of quality time at the chiropractor!
Start out slow and gradually incorporate more into your workouts. If you do too much at once, you are likely to burnout and quit. Work your way up to things and you will feel and look much better in the long run.
Get a Move On
I know how easy it is to sit at the computer for hours at a time, but this is terrible for our health! Not only can sitting down for prolonged periods of time lead to weight gain but it can also lead to aches and pains throughout the body.
Even if you have to sit down all day for your work or study, there are ways you can still get some exercise in. Try standing up and stretching every 30 minutes or so and always try and take the stairs rather than the elevator when you can.
Find Something You Enjoy
Exercise doesn’t have to be a chore, it can be fun! Try and find an exercise class or sport that you really enjoy and this can be a great way to keep you motivated.
I started taking a dance class a few months ago and it is so much fun it doesn’t even seem like I’m working out. Explore different options and recruit some friends to work out with you. Their company and support can be great motivators and can help make tough exercises less torturous!
When you complete an extra tough workout or reach your weight goal – reward yourself! You have put in the work and deserve a treat once in a while.
Do something that makes you happy and take the time to congratulate yourself on all of your hard work. Getting into shape doesn’t have to be a solemn ordeal and you will definitely want to celebrate your accomplishments.
As you can see, there are plenty of realistic ways you can get into shape. We all have hectic lives and schedules but these simple suggestions can help us shed the pounds and become healthier. Push yourself but don’t overdo it and try and incorporate a healthy diet to coincide with your fitness regime. Good luck!