How To Make Fitness First In Your Life

How To Make Fitness First In Your Life

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fitness first

Your alarm just went off. You know you should get up. You know you should slip into your running shoes and make your way out. But that warm, comfy bed has you curled up like a toasty cinnamon bun.

Why on earth would you want to leave that?

Maybe you’ll just sleep in today and start your workout routine tomorrow.

Does any of that sound familiar?

Chances are, it does, and it’s a problem most of us have faced before. It’s so much easier to just stay in bed, or to grab that extra slice of pizza, or to indulge in a few extra beers while out with friends then find the nearest gym. It’s human nature.

And the fact of the matter is, if workout out and eating right were easy, we’d all have those killer beach bodies and enter the next muscle contest

But we don’t. In fact, very few people do.

So you have to decide, if you want to live a healthy life, have the fit body everyone admires and potentially add years to your life, or would you rather be part of the larger majority on the other side?

We’re not going to fault you if you choose the latter. After all, it takes hard work and dedication to stick with fitness. If you really do want to be fit, you’ll need to make fitness first in your life.

How do you do this?

We’ve got the answers to help you along the way. 

Ditch The Excuses

Everyone has excuses for why they don’t work out. Very rarely will you ask someone why they don’t work out and hear “I don’t feel like it.”

These people are at least honest and comfortable with who they are. They don’t make excuses and accept it. They might not be your kindred workout spirit, but there’s no shame in saying it like it is.

Everyone else?

They will likely give you some kind of an excuse.

There isn’t enough time, they don’t have enough money or too many obligations to spend time working out. You’ve heard it all and we’ve heard it all. Probably every excuse in the world we’ve heard, but that’s all it is: an excuse. Excuses hold you back. They prevent you from accomplishing what you really want in life. It’s easier to make an excuse than to dedicate yourself to improvement. So here’s the first step in putting a healthy lifestyle first: ditch the excuses. 

Yes, there almost always is time to workout.

Look at your day. Are you going to tell us that somewhere in there you can’t find 45 minutes or an hour?

Unless you’re working three jobs and literally can only sleep for four hours a day with no time in between shifts, you have time. If it helps, keep a detailed schedule of your day and write down everything you do.

Look it over at the end of the week.

We’re confident you’ll find pockets of activities you don’t need to do or can cut out. 

Money A Problem?

Money is another major excuse we heard a good deal about. You don’t have the money to workout and to live healthily.

Really?

You don’t need money to live healthily. That is a fabricated myth. You don’t need a gym membership to workout or to live healthily. As long as you have a pair of shoes you can go running. Or you can jump an invisible rope. Or you can look online and find one of the thousands of great workout videos on YouTube.

But what about weights?

Gym equipment is expensive. Well, yes, gym equipment does add up, even if you try to buy weights from garage sales (which is a great way to score cheap weight and gym equipment as you score big on the failed workout dreams of others).

Let’s say you don’t have that kind of money to buy the used equipment.

There are actually excellent bodyweight workouts where you just use your own body weight. And at the very least, a pull-up bar (which you can pick up for $15 or so online). In reality, as long as you’re creative, you don’t need money to exercise. So ditch the excuses.

The sooner you do, the faster you’ll be able to focus on a healthy lifestyle (WebMD, 2012). 

Drink A lot Of Water!

When you shift to an active, healthy lifestyle, you’re going to run into two very different tasks: eating healthy and sticking to a workout schedule.

Changing your diet is very difficult now because of all the sugar and salt pumped into most modern food.

Your body has become accustomed to all of this always being present it almost treats sugar and salt as a drug.

You’ll go through withdrawals when you don’t consume salt or sugar. It’s why normal, fresh food just doesn’t do it for you at first. Well, one of the best ways to help you move past this stage is to drink a considerable amount of water. You’ve probably heard the recommendation of eight glasses of eight ounces of water a day. That’s 64 ounces. Think of that as a minimum. Drink more if you can. At work, have a 32-ounce water bottle with you and drink this twice during the workday. Drink more in the morning and evening. 

So why drink so much water?

It will help push the salt and sugar out of your system faster. This way, as you start eating healthier, your body will be flushed out of sodium and sugar faster, which will help you ditch the dependency on sugar and salt. 

This also means ditch salty or sweet drinks. Cut out anything carbonated, remove sodas and juice from your diet, and if you drink coffee, remove the sugar and cream. If black coffee is too harsh for you, add cinnamon (cinnamon is good for your metabolism as well).

You should only be drinking water (if you need flavor, add lemon, lime or cucumber slices), black coffee and non-sweetened tea (Mayo Clinic, 2015).

Remove All Pitfalls From Your House

Look around your house. What could cause you to fail?

Chances are, you’ll find these pitfalls in the kitchen. There will come a time where you just crave something sweet or salty. So you’ll decide to grab that bag of hard as a rock marshmallow, or the bag of Reese Pieces your mom sent you for Valentine’s Day years ago.

Remove the stumbling blocks so you don’t have these issues as you move forward with your fitness first lifestyle. 

Make Fitness First In Your Life With A Workout Routine

Pick a time during the day where you can work out.

Maybe the best time for you is the first thing.

Perhaps you’re better off exercising post work day.

Whenever this time period is, you want to try and repeat it every day.

The first few days you’ll feel excited about workout out. It feels good and you’ll have all those goals of a killer dream body for the summer.

But, as the novelty begins to wear off, you might start to drift away.

After all, you’re probably not seeing instant results, so your body might pull you in directions, away from your workout routine. You need to fight these urges. The longer you go with a routine, the harder it is to skip.

Likewise, once you skip a routine, it becomes easier to skip it again.

You will have the urge to skip from time to time, but every time you still workout and skip the urge, the easier it will become to stick with workout out and your fitness program. 

Mix It Up Your Workout

One of the biggest problems with workout out is doing the same exact thing over and over.

Basically, your body and your mind become bored with it. Running the same route in the morning doesn’t have the same excitement.

Or you’re just tired of performing the same lifts throughout the week. You need to be stimulated, which means you need to mix it up. The great thing about cardio is you don’t need to do the same thing over and over.

So instead of jogging every day, check out the workout videos online. Or pick up a medicine ball and do a series of plyometric jumps and movements with the ball. There is no shortage of workout options you can undertake at home. You can stick with the same workout for a few weeks, or you can change it up every few days.

Whatever you do,  mixing it up keeps it interesting and helps you avoid boredom (Human Cell Integrity 2017). 

Get Used To Saying “No”, Remeber it’s Fitness First

You have great friends.

They want to spend time with you.

But sometimes, these friends and family members will become detrimental to your fitness plans.

Now, it’s great if you have one or two who are in it for the long haul with you for workout out. If you don’t, that’s alright.

You can make friends at the gym (and in reality, you’re not really there to make friends anyway, but to get a fit body and live an active lifestyle).

So, you might have friends calling and texting you non stop to do stuff. You need to know your schedule. This is one reason why workout out in the morning can help, as you’ll have it out of the way, should your friends want to spend time with you.

Whatever you do, don’t let your workout fall by the wayside.

And if your friends want to go out to a restaurant, look up what sort of healthy menu items are available.

It only takes going out for a few burgers in one week to knock you off of your game and really pull you back into the routine of eating poorly. 

One Day A Week For A Non-Fitness Activity

Fitness will become first in your life if you stick with it.

However, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a life at all. Is it really worth cutting out all of your friends and family so you can go do squats all day?

Some people might say yes.

That’s an answer only you can provide, but individuals tend to be healthier and happier when they have both a healthy lifestyle and a healthy personal life. That is why you should, once a week, get out and have fun with your friends. 

Call this the “cheat” day. You’ve eaten healthy all week, so on this one day, feel free to eat those wings or the tacos you’ve had an eye on. Just make sure it stays on this one day. If you are unable to control yourself, then stick with the salad, grilled chicken or fish options at the restaurant. By spending one day a week with friends and eating the less than healthy food you normally skip out on, it will help prevent you from binging later on.

The binge is one of the most dangerous activities you want to avoid as you focus on fitness. It happens when you go so long without doing something you end up going way overboard.

For example, you’ve probably been on a diet before with a significant caloric intake reduction. It might work for a few days, but then one day, you just snap and eat everything in the house. From the cooking chocolate in the pantry to the carton of Italian bread crumbs, it’s all forbidden and yet it all tastes so good.

These skip days will actually keep you on track and help prevent you from cheating later on. 

Conclusion

Staying, and remaining, fit is difficult. Nobody is going to tell you otherwise. There’s a reason why you only see a handful of great bodies while out on the beach somewhere (unless you happen onto a Victoria Secret’s shoot by the ocean). Staying fit and keeping your tight and toned body is work. And there are chances you’ll have slip-ups along the way.

After all, we’re all human, right?

As long as you don’t fall off the wagon and instead climb back on and keep going, you’ll find it becomes easier to stick with fitness and to maintain the look you’ve been shooting for. 

-Terry Asher

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Terry Asher

Owner & Founder at Gym Junkies LLC
After changing his best friend’s life by helping him lose over 70lbs, dropping him down to an amazing 7% body fat, Terry was inspired to be a full-time internet trainer knowing he could do the same for many more. In 2010, Terry published his own diet and fitness e-book that can be purchased on this website. Let Terry help you change your body for the better!
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