You’ve decided to get into lifting and personal fitness and you’re wondering how to make it count. One of the greatest gifts that you might enjoy for the rest of your life can be self-given – exercise and a healthy lifestyle. Starting your fitness journey can simply start as a goal you always wanted to reach but never actually got into it.
In this article, we’re going to give you a few tips that can help you with starting, but most importantly, sticking to your new lifestyle. Let us give you a few tips and tricks on how to set optimal goals, keep progressing, and attain the new lifestyle with confidence so that your 2019 resolution doesn’t have to be – let’s get into the gym this year.
1. Why Start Lifting?
One of the most important factors in starting something new is having a clear understanding of why you want to start in the first place. What are you trying to achieve? How will you strive to look like or feel like? Many questions can be asked to determine your specific reasons why you want to start lifting, however, it’s important you do, especially if you’re just starting out with lifting.
A strong and specific ‘why’ will help you get back on track in times of doubt or plateau and it can drive you to stay consistent with your journey as you will be able to come back to why you started. Setting up your ‘why’ around something strong and specific can be challenging but it’s worth it. For example, starting because exercise is beneficial to your health and physique and it can positively affect many areas of your life might be a better foundation for your journey than just starting because lifting is something to do and your friend John does it.
2. Strong Goal Setting
After you find out your strong statement about starting this great lifting journey, spend some time and develop a variety of goals. Dividing your goals into long-term and short-term categories will help out with focusing on specific things throughout the weeks, months, and years of lifting.
Tackling your goals one at the time will prevent being overwhelmed and discouraged if you hit a plateau or if you encounter some obstacles like different lifting regimes or nutrition changes. How you set up your categories is completely up to you but usually, long-term goals should be set to be achieved in a considerable time in the future ahead such as 1 year from now or further. These goals should be measurable, important to you, and “bigger” than the short-term ones. For example, a long-term goal could be, “On January 1st, 2018 I will be able to bench X lbs/kgs”, “I will lose/gain X amount of weight by this date”, etc. Short-term goals will support your progress by achieving something on the daily or weekly basis.
Plan your lifting/exercise schedule ahead every week so you will know what you want to accomplish in that short time frame. For example, you can start by establishing how many times per week you will devote to exercise, how many times to meal prep, and how many times to do cardio. If your goal is to workout 3 times per week, meal prep twice, and do cardio twice per week, make the schedule to reflect those goals and stick to it.
3. Tag A Buddy Along
Another way of getting yourself to stay consistent and keep progressing is by finding a friend who is at a similar place in their lifting journey and wants to join you in your gym efforts. Having a friend that pushes you during your workouts and commits with you to go to the gym and pump each other up can be the best gift.
Knowing that your gym buddy is relying on you to complete the workouts together will help you stay accountable and hit the weights even when you don’t feel like it. Utilize those gym enthusiastic friends of yours and start working out together.
4. Read Up
Educating yourself about your own body and experimenting with a variety of nutrition and workout plans is an essential piece of your success down the road. Especially at the beginning stages of your lifting, try to spend some time learning about fitness-related topics such as nutrition, physiology, muscle growth, strength training, stretching, etc.
Learn about the impact that these different components have on your body before diving head first into the “Get Huge Fast” magazine article you saw this morning. Learn the theory from credible sources and experiment with applying that theory to your own body. If you explore The Zone on Myprotein website, you will find tons of resources and sample workout programs as well as loads of yummy recipes and tips & tricks.
Somethings will work and somethings will not but don’t worry. We’re all different and that’s the beauty of lifting – there is no one way to success and a strong physique.
5. Switch Things Up
You’re reaching your goals, you’re progressing well, and you have a much better understanding of what works for you and what doesn’t. However, try to avoid the same mistake that many of us might have done at the beginning of our lifting times – same workouts all the time.
Sure, you don’t need to change your workout every time you scan your gym pass at the front desk but throughout the year some changes need to be made to progress optimally. Try to include some cross-training, power-lifting, or body weight exercises to learn what you like the best and what you might enjoy going forward. Don’t feel guilty about not enjoying a particular workout or an exercise program, just switch things up.
Putting It All Together
Personal fitness and staying in shape is one of the best gifts you can give to yourself at any point in your life. Nevertheless, starting the journey right and finding ways of making it enjoyable for yourself is just as important.
These tips are just a few that might help you to stay consistent and get into the lifestyle of caring about your own body, exercising, eating healthy, or just staying active. We believe that once you start lifting and seeing the fruits of the labor in the gym, there is no coming back to the times when exercise was not part of your life. Once you started lifting, eating healthy, and progressing, never look back because the best shape of your life is ahead of you – one workout at the time.