Getting in shape is a loaded phrase—and one that’s sometimes easier said than done. There are a lot of factors (that often need to turn into habits) that weigh into the cumulative action of getting in shape. For starters, there’s establishing a mindful workout routine filled with exercises that will tone and strengthen your muscles, as well as help you lose excess body fat if that’s on your goal sheet. In addition, re-hauling your diet with natural and fresh foods and cutting out the junk (think fast food, all those sugary sweets and alcohol) plays a big part, too.
It might take commitment, but it’s totally and completely possible with some willpower. If getting in shape is on your agenda, take a look at these health and fitness tips that could help you in the journey to your goal!
Get Active and Consult
This is basically the first step in starting a workout routine—getting moving and being active. What kind of exercise, how frequently you do it, and the intensity is largely based on your fitness level, and consulting an expert, trainer, or a doctor to great way to figure out what safely works for you. A recent study by The British Journal of Sports Medicine even suggests that walking groups can have a positive impact on your health, while another study suggests that a walking break at lunchtime has even boosted employees moods.
Try Working Out With a Friend
Friends prove to be great motivation when it comes to actually working out. Having someone by your side to push you an encourage makes all the difference when you’re struggling through a workout or even trying to start one. You might end up looking forward to it—and we all know positivity is key in reaching your goals. In fact, a study found that those who were asked about their positive and even negative memories of exercise were more likely to workout than those who were not.
Know the Gym Isn’t the Only Way to Exercise
Exercise shouldn’t be limited on a subscription to the gym. There are plenty of things you can do to up your activity level. If you’re looking for some great at-home workouts, check out YouTube, where you’ll find a ton of awesome ideas from trainers, yoga instructors, and more.
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Concentrate on Your Diet
Your activity level (among many other things) plays an impact on how many calories you need to consume to maintain your current weight. While eating within a healthy calorie range for your activity level and current health status is very important, the kinds of foods you eat to fuel your body is of great importance, too. When it comes to weight loss, there are many healthy foods you can turn to that have been said to curb your appetite, are nutrient-rich, and will fuel your body. The US Department of Agriculture also has a guide that suggests what types of foods to introduce and omit from your diet in order to maintain a healthy eating pattern. If you’re looking to tone your tummy, it’s been suggested that a diet filled with natural foods, protein, veggies, fiber, and water could be helpful.
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If Toning Your Core is of Interest, Follow These Tips
Looking to tone your core this year? You’ll want to watch your diet. Dr. Mike Roussell, Director of Nutrition at Peak Performance in New York City, suggests keeping your plate filled with protein (like eggs, lean beef, chicken, and fish), veggies (think broccoli, brussel sprouts, spinach, tomatoes, and onions), and berries. “Top off most dishes by drizzling with a small amount of oil like olive oil. Only have a small portion starchy carbohydrates (e.g. rice, potato, whole wheat pasta, yams) in the meal after you exercise. Minimize alcohol to 4 drinks a week,” he further explains. In terms of snack foods, he explains that those that contain fat, fiber, and protein are best, pointing towards string cheese, Greek yogurts, almonds, pistachios, or a protein shake.
When it comes to working out this area of the body, Peak trainer Katie Mack suggests turning to a personal trainer to make sure you’re maximizing the safety of your routine, as well as the results. “If your goal is to see your 6-pack, and depending on your scheduled workout frequency and duration, total body workouts (which include upper and lower movements [think push ups and pulls ups, lunges and deadlifts] with some cardio/conditioning thrown into the mix) may be your best choice. This will be the biggest bang-for-your-buck approach if losing body fat is your priority in order to see your abs, along with following a great diet,” she explains.
Don’t have more than ten minutes to work on your core for the day? Consider following this routine that Mack suggests. “Design a workout using 1 lower body exercise, 1 upper body exercise, 1 ‘core’ exercise, and 1 cardio exercise, and using those 4 exercises in a continuous circuit for 10 minutes. Rest as needed, but try to fit in as much work as possible!”