Many people swear by fitness and why shouldn’t they? It is by far one of the greatest ways to build discipline, let go of stress, clear up your mind, prevent numerous health problems, etc. The list of benefits for working out and making it a part of your lifestyle can go on and on which is why many millionaires and successful gurus have made fitness a part of their lifestyle. Why is it you ask? It’s not only because they want to be healthy or they have a lot of time on their hands which entrepreneurs, students, or employees wouldn’t have but it is because “most successful people know that exercise is the key to mentally and physically pushing themselves further” (Gillet, 2016).
In fact, exercise has helped Former President Barack Obama become who he is today. He had mentioned in his autobiography that he was a casual drug user and underachiever until he started running 3 miles a day. As of now, he is reported to workout 45 minutes a day for 5-6 days a week with his workout consisting of cardio and strength training. Even though he isn’t a morning person, he has developed this discipline of waking up early and squeezing a workout in before starting a day of work (Gillet, 2016).
Now, most of you have probably heard of Shark Tank… It’s this reality tv show that gives aspiring entrepreneurs a chance to showcase their business idea and secure business deals with tycoons and become millionaires themselves. A regular judge of that show Mark Cuban; a billionaire tech investor ALSO makes sure to get in at least an hour of cardio in a day. Moreover, Richard Branson; the founder of Virgin Group has said that working out (whether it be swimming, rock climbing, weight lifting) gives him 4 additional hours of productivity a day! (Gillett, 2016).
Most of you know the benefits of working out, you’ve probably heard it or read about it but don’t start or will start and stop…. Why? The simple answer is because you aren’t intrinsically motivated and are lazy. The key to working out and making it a part of your lifestyle requires discipline, motivation, consistency, and perseverance. Most people also tend to make the mistake that they set highly unrealistic expectations to workout which lowers their confidence and self-esteem after the first or second day because they aren’t simply meeting those impractical expectations.
Here are some tips to take into consideration when trying to make fitness a part of your life and reap all those benefits:
1. Be Clear behind the reason of you wanting to Workout
- You need to understand why you want to workout
- Make sure to understand whether it’s an extrinsic motivation or intrinsic motivation ( motivation coming from within. Are you working out for an external incentive or are you working out to reap the self-care benefits such as to get in extra hours of productivity, feel good about yourself, have a better mood, and be at peace?)
Please remember that although extrinsic motivation does work, it is suboptimal and a quick fix at the end of the day. It won’t help you achieve your long term goals and allow fitness to be a part of your lifestyle. To make fitness a part of your lifestyle, the motivation has to come from within… you need to feel motivated internally to allow for optimal motivation and thus, aid in achieving your long term goals
2. Set up some short term goals for yourself
- The best way to start is to set daily or weekly goals for yourself
- MAKE SURE THEY AREN’T UNREALISTIC
- Unrealistic goals will not only shatter your confidence but will destroy your motivation and make you lazy again
- For ex. If you want to start working out and have a sedentary lifestyle, start by making your first week’s goal to workout at least 3times a week and go for walks on alternate days
3. Start Slow (Rome wasn’t built in a day)
4. Make small improvements
(these small movements have a compounding effect)
- You need to understand that it is extremely normal to start slow
- Something is better than nothing
- Making small steps will lead to achieving long term results but you need to make sure to not let go and stop midway… there will be times when you don’t feel like working out or engaging on some sort of physical activity but you need to tell yourself that you’re better than this
- Starting fast and making big jumps can overexert you and lead to short term results only
- It is the small improvements that you make on a daily basis (so small that sometimes you won’t even understand the benefits or change it is making in your daily life) which will have a compounding effect on your life and allow you to reap rewards as much as 10x greater
5. Reap the Benefits!
Now, for those that want to start working out but don’t know what to do or are looking for quick and effective workouts, here are some ideas:
1) HIIT Workouts
- Full-Form: High-Intensity Interval Training
- It allows people to burn maximum calories in a very short period of time
- Ranges from 10-30 mins and can burn up to 189-273 calories (Fitness Blender, n.d.)
- Involves heart rate raising moves such as squat jumps, burpees, commandos, bear walks, etc.
- Recommended to do HIIT training 2-3 times a week to allow for your muscles to rest and recover during the other days (During the other days, one can opt for yoga, pilates, or resistance training)
- Low impact exercise that aims to strengthen muscles while improving alignment and flexibility
- Can be done on a reformer or only with a mat
- Extremely convenient, relaxing and amazing weight loss workout
- There are a plethora of dance workouts, Zumba, Bollywood dance workouts available online and you don’t need any equipment making it extremely manageable, convenient, and cost-effective
- Moreover, dancing results in great benefits which include:
- Improved cardiac and lung health (“Dance-Health Benefits”, n.d.)
- Increased aerobic fitness (“Dance-Health Benefits”, n.d.)
- Increased muscular strength (“Dance-Health Benefits”, n.d.)
- Weight Management: Dancing can burn around 200-223 calories in a half-hour session! (Harvard Medical School, 2018)
- Suitable for all ages!
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