Fitness Tools

How to achieve your Fitness Goals!

Getting in shape, having a toned body and being in good health are three things that just about every person in the world desires. As we age, our metabolism slows down making it that much harder to lose weight and stay fit. There’s no magic pill or simple solution to weight loss, but there are some things that you can do to help you achieve your fitness goals regardless of your age.

Before we delve into those things, it’s important to understand that getting in shape, toning your abs and losing weight isn’t all about exercise. There’s a lot more to it than that, such as getting an adequate amount of sleep, reducing caloric intake, consuming plenty of water and more. Nonetheless, here are four tips to help you achieve your fitness goals:

1. Set Realistic Goals – All too often, we set goals for ourselves only to fail at them. The primary reason we fail is because the goal that we set was a long-term goal. Instead of setting long-term goals that are almost impossible to achieve, set yourself several short-term goals that can realistically be met. This not only helps you actually meet your goals, but it helps to keep you motivated on your fitness journey.

2. Start Slow – The saying “No Pain, No Gain” does not necessarily apply. Instead, start slow. Don’t rush into things. If you start off too fast, you are more likely to quit. Whether starting slow means taking the stairs at work instead of the elevator or reducing the number of soft drinks that you drink a day from 5 to 3, go at your own pace so that you the probability of achieving your fitness goals are much higher.

3. Get Plenty of Sleep – While you may think it’s not necessarily the most important thing in the world, adequate rest (especially if you are exercising) is critical in maintaining a healthy body. Without sleep, your body is like a car running on fumes. If you are dieting and exercising but not getting enough sleep, you could really be putting your body in danger.

4. Stay Hydrated – It is of vital importance to remain properly hydrated when exercising. When you sweat, you are losing body weight. But if your body doesn’t have adequate hydration, the cardiovascular system becomes stressed resulting in decreased physical performance. Therefore, it is recommended to drink a couple of glasses of water prior to physical activity, at least five ounces every 20 minutes during physical activity and at least a couple of glasses of water following physical activity.

Many find it difficult to reach their fitness goals because they are not adequately educated and motivated. If this is something that you are worried about, you may want to consider talking with our local MWR fitness professionals.

Running: How to get started!

Believe it or not, running can be a lifesaver in a number of ways. Not only will it help you get into shape and lose weight, but running will also help you improve your overall health. Plus, you’ll be a lot happier when you are in shape and healthier, all of which can be gained through a little bit of sports and fitness. If you haven’t incorporated running into your lifestyle yet, then you are truly missing out. However, it isn’t something that you’ll be able to do perfectly overnight, as it will take time to build up your momentum. And, don’t expect to be able to join in on the 5K this month because you need to build your endurance before you tackle something like that.

The Need to Ease Into Running

If you’ve tried running before and didn’t succeed, why do you think that is? For most individuals, it is because they started too fast. They tried to run full-speed ahead without ever trying to slow it down and take it easy. By doing this, running quickly became a turn-off and was put on the back burner. Impatience may get the best of you in times like these (building up to running fast), but it is better for you and your body overall if you wait it out and not try to do too much at one time – especially early in the game

Start by Walking and Jogging NOT Running

You don’t want to start off running – this is where most people make their very first mistake. You want to start by jogging and walking. By doing this, you are strengthening your bones and getting your body into shape. This is all so that you can actually tackle running without feeling as if you need to fall over and pass out.

Time Yourself

You will want to start with a brisk warm up walk that usually lasts for about five minutes, then you want to alternate periods of jogging and walking. It’s usually best to start off with the same amount of time – jog for two, walk for two. As you progress, you can start to increase the time that you jog and decrease the amount of time that you walk; however, do not eliminate walking for several weeks at which time you will be able to handle a warm-up and a straight run.

It’s time for you to take control of your life. If you want sculpted quads and a flat, ripped abdomen, running is your ticket to all that and much more. Start with a combination of walking and running, as outlined above, and work your way into just running. This is the best way to build yourself up for participating in the next MWR 5K Fun Run/Walk or any type of fitness program that involves endurance training. 

20 Minute Cardio Calorie Scale

Attention Fitness Fanatics! Make the most of your warm-up and your workout! Check the below to see what 20 minutes of cardio can do for you!

Exercise Calories Burned
Weight Lifting (light) 71 calories
Shooting Basketball Hoops 102 calories
Recumbent Bicycle – Program Random at level 5 (avg 75 rpm) 118 calories
Hiking (moderate) 135 calories
Aerobics Classes (low impact) 138 calories
Walking uphill (3.5 mph) 141 calories
Weight Lifting (hard) 143 calories
Aerobics Classes (high impact) 163 calories
Swimming Freestyle 177 calories
Running/Treadmill 6.0 mph (10 minute mile) 250 calories
Cross trainer/Elliptical – Program Random at level 5 269 calories

Better fitness is within reach for everyone! Stop by one of your local MWR Fitness Centers and start today!