GET STARTED ON YOUR FITNESS JOURNEY TODAY
There are 53 days between today and January 1, 2022. Great strides can be made in that period of time, whether you want to gain muscle, lose fat, improve strength and balance or develop a more symmetrical and attractive body. Or accomplish all of these goals.
Wouldn’t it be better to enter 2022 on a roll? With the satisfaction and momentum gained by reaching small targets before then?
Holiday meals need not be deterrents and certainly not excuses to wait until January 1. We can eat with good nutrition in mind – or we can plan on more eating and adapt to this by cutting back and working out more intensely afterward. The key is to not lapse into heavy eating and little or no exercise during the upcoming weeks. Mind over matter.
None of this is difficult. It only requires a committed outlook and a willingness to forego indulgences.
The 80-20 rule emerged in the beginning of the 20th century. It was founded by Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto, who noted that 20% of the pea pods in his garden were producing 80% of the peas. Also, Pareto was able to show that 80% of the wealth in Italy was owned by 20% of the people.
My very anecdotal application of this is that it seems to me that 20% of the people I see are doing at least 80% of the fitness training and that these same people are the ones most heavily invested in good nutrition.
There is unfortunately very little collective or widespread allegiance to fitness and nutrition. In fact, fit people are easily noticed by their deviations from the norm. These people have ingrained fitness / nutrition habits and want to be different.
Why not join this group? They are not doing anything difficult and are not possessed of any secret information. They are generally not smarter or genetically favored. They have only developed healthy habits. I could name several members of this “group” quite easily.
The one-hour workout per day illustrated above certainly shows unique commitment. My workouts are done for 30 – 40 minutes per day before breakfast – and sometimes I take the day off. That is not much time! Yet today, I was flattered by someone who sincerely could not believe my age, based on my physical appearance. These little tributes to fit people are not uncommon and we are motivated by such recognition, even though we well know our limitations and our room for improvement.
The American Heart Association recommends the following:
- At least 150 minutes per week of moderate aerobic activity
- Or at least 75 minutes per week of vigorous aerobic activity
- At least 2 days per week of moderate to intense resistance training
Examples of moderate intensity aerobic activity:
- Brisk walking
- Water aerobics
- Dancing (ballroom etc.)
- Tennis (doubles)
- Slower biking (less than 10 mph)
Vigorous intensity includes:
- Uphill hiking or hiking with a backpack
- Swimming laps
- Aerobic dancing
- Heavy yard work – lots of digging
- Tennis (singles)
- Cycling (over 10 mph)
- Rope jumping
I would recommend that absolute beginners (or those who have had lengthy layoffs for health or other reasons) start slowly and with minimal intensity. This would be after a medical check – up and conference with your physician. Strength and fitness gains come quickly if we are consistent with our training. Our initial goal is to develop the habit of working out and eating well. Raising the amount of resistance and the number of reps or sets will make more sense as we progress.
KEEP IT SIMPLE
There is no need to immediately purchase expensive equipment or to join a gym. Anyone can do free squats, lunges, planks, crunches and push-ups (even on knees at first) and we can all go outside for a walk around our neighborhood. Take your dog for a walk. You will both love it.
To repeat – develop healthy habits.
A good bodyweight routine is shown below. Another one is used by Helen Mirren, who looks incredible at age 76. Here is my article on Helen Mirren, which includes her bodyweight workout routine. Helen is quite inspiring, to state the obvious.
ADDING MORE SOPHISTICATION
Adding equipment can be done quite inexpensively and more professional tools are available as we progress.
Amazon is a great source for fitness equipment and just about anything else. As an Amazon affiliate, I may earn from qualifying purchases. Click on these links and then scroll around as you see fit:
- Resistance bands
- Light dumbbells with stand
- Adjustable dumbbell (very sophisticated)
- Crunch device (I use this to protect my back with floor exercises)
Dick’s Sporting Goods is my favorite source for cardio equipment and for all manner of athletic equipment, accessories and apparel. They offer a huge inventory, great service and significant discounts.
Bullworker isotonic / isometric workout tools are small but challenging. Also, ideal for home use or even for traveling. I consistently use Bullworker.
Goli gummies keep me from overeating and help me to maintain my health.
It seems to me that very few people realize how simple it is to embrace a fitness routine. Or how inexpensive. Bodyweight exercises are great for beginners and I still do push-ups after more than 60 years of working out. I also use resistance bands, dumbbells and Bullworker.products. My links are to products that I have used repeatedly. I use my treadmill, but I also take outdoor walks.
My choice is to do home workout routines, though I maintain a gym membership. My practice is to do a workout every morning before breakfast – upper body one day, core the next. Each is followed by a treadmill or outside walk, depending on the weather.
It should be no surprise that motivation is the key to all of this. (Note my illustrated quotations). I like to play music when I am on my treadmill and I watch television as I work out. I am routinized.
Please consider a fitness lifestyle if you have not yet become so committed. You will never regret that choice!
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