Four years ago I rarely exercised and had no workout routine to speak of. Getting fit was just not something I cared about. But when I began to physically & mentally feel tired, as well as anxious, I soon realised how important it was for me to exercise, for both body and mind.
I was an active kid growing up – I danced and played soccer, but as soon as I moved to start uni I kind of gave everything up. A few times I tried going for a run, but I hated it and found it too boring. I tried doing exercises at home but didn’t feel motivated. I ate poorly too and didn’t feel as vibrant as I used to be.
Then one day while I was on YouTube I came across a yoga video and gave it a go. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it! So much so that I practised more and more. I was becoming more flexible, stronger and leaner and it didn’t feel like exercise. Since then I’ve joined a yoga studio, which was one of the best things I’ve ever done for my health. At the studio, I started to branch out and I began to take Pilates and Barre (ballet-inspired interval and strength training) classes. I try to go to one of each class a week, and in a year and a half I have noticed a massive difference in my mental wellbeing and body – namely, more sculpted and lean body and a rewarding sense of strength and confidence.
I wish someone had told me these Top 5 Tips to Get Fit & Healthy, and I do hope they are helpful to any of you reading who want to get fit but are feeling sluggish and unmotivated.
1. Find a form of exercise you have fun doing!
You might discover you like weight training, hiking, dancing, playing team sports, swimming. You just have to try and find it! As long as you think of exercise as something you ‘have’ to do, it will be hard to feel positive about it. If you find your exercise, working out will feel rewarding and I guarantee you will look forward to doing it.
2. Start slowly
Don’t set yourself up for failure and plan a workout schedule where you exercise intensely 5 times a week. Start with 1-2 days and work your way up. You’ll gain confidence, see differences in your body and you will naturally feel like exercising more.
3. Visualise a healthier, stronger you – not a skinnier you.
Instead of working out with the aim of having a Victoria’s Secret model body (we all do it), picture yourself as the healthiest version of you. Embrace your differences and your uniqueness. Once you find a form of exercise you enjoy, usually these self-conscious worries disappear as you feel stronger and clearer of mind. Though if you’re still really feeling insecure about a certain area (arms, legs, butt, etc.) like most of us do, perhaps dedicate a few workouts to sculpting these areas you would like to enhance or tone.
4. Workout with a friend
Going to gym classes or for hikes with a friend/group of friends is a great way to exercise, partially because you’re too busy chatting for it to feel like a big workout! You’re having fun, catching up and getting fit all at the same time.
5. Eat a Balanced Diet
Forget ‘diets’ and focus on finding a balanced diet that works for you. All of our bodies are different and there is no one-size-fits-all approach to healthy eating. For me, cutting all animal products did wonders for me and I feel more healthy than ever. If you’re lost and need help, visit a nutritionist to help you find the balanced diet. All in all, make sure you’re eating an abundance of fresh vegetables and fruit, whole grains, healthy fats and protein. And don’t forget to treat yourself! Balance means you indulge at times too.
I hope these Fit & Healthy Tips help and I’d love to hear yours!