There is more purpose behind exercise other than trying to reach your ideal weight. It’s a state of balance in your mind, body, and spirit that is needed in order to achieve your ultimate health and well-being. So let’s go back-to-basics and ensure we can obtain the vital ingredients needed for a solidified foundation on the importance of moving.
No. 1 – POSITIVITY AND SETTING GOALS
No matter what your fitness level, the importance of positivity and setting goals is undeniable. Goal setting is the perfect tool to keep you on track. It also keeps you focused, motivated and adds purpose to your work-outs. Write down what your goals are and why they are important to you, place them somewhere visible that way you are reminded and motivated each and every day. You can’t lead a positive life, with a negative mind, nor can you approach exercise with a negative attitude. The ‘I can do it’ mentality is what pushes us harder and gets us over the finish line. If you want to stay on track with your goals, be positive, work hard and believe that you can do it. That’s how we start to tick off that goal list.
No. 2 – MOVING YOUR BODY TO LOVE YOURSELF
If you are feeling a bit apprehensive about exercise, or have simply lost some motivation to work-out…try to change up your mind set. Think of exercise as a gift and not a chore. The ability to move your body every day is a valuable thing, and you can reap so many rewards, not just physically, but mentally too! You know that feeling you seek when you conquer all confidence that follows a good work-out? Well, that is because those endorphins can boost a whole lot of self-confidence. Most people undertake fitness regimes with the goal of losing weight and improving muscle tone. With these improvements and results come a healthy boost of self-confidence and an improved sense of self— including body image and control over other aspects of life, such as work and relationships. So move your body girl, start looking at your glass as half-full!
No. 3 – PAY ATTENTION TO YOUR BODY
While it is important to achieve your fitness and health goals, it is equally as important to seek balance in your life. This means being aware of pushing your body to breaking point. Pain is a great sign of telling you how hard you have worked, but it’s also a great communicator in telling you that something isn’t quite right. If this is the case, trust your instincts and act on it straight away. You must never dismiss the signals your body is sending you. Remember, you have not failed by dialling back the intensity of your exercise regime; if you are considering the wellbeing of your body this should be the ultimate priority.
No. 4 – DO NOT BE DISCOURAGED
Experts agree that the best form of exercise is one that you enjoy enough to stick with. If you hate running, chances are you just won’t do it. Try walking instead, or sign up for yoga or bootcamp class. The options are endless, the idea is to pick an activity that you’re suited for and that appeals to you. A cool way to look at it is as if your state of mind and wellbeing is a bridge that requires the support of all its beams. If you only focus on your physical health and neglect your emotional needs, the bridge will collapse. Likewise, if you focus on only relieving personal stress without strengthening your connection to self, you won’t be able to achieve the sense of balance you are striving for. Don’t be discouraged, sport isn’t just for kids; there is an enjoyable avenue for all to enjoy, so pick an active move and have fun with it!
No. 5 – DONT FORGET TO STRETCH
A well-rounded exercise regime would typically cover a healthy mix of cardio and strength training – which is great. However, many tend to neglect a component that is equally as important…stretching. It is so important to stretch all your muscle groups on a daily basis in order for them to be well circulated and healthy. We spend most of our day in the same posture. By not stretching, we continue to overuse and fatigue our muscles, making them short and tight, and bringing on all kinds of health woes (back pain anyone?). So don’t forget the need to stretch out your body every day, whether it’s when you wake up in the morning or post work-out.
Whether you are an exercise veteran, or are just gearing up to your new active life, the most important thing is to remember the fundamentals. By setting goals and harnessing a positive mind allows you to be motivated and driven. Listen to your body, and move it every day in new and exciting ways – it will make you feel alive, and invigorated. Finally, honour your body, and treat it with the utmost respect. These are the foundations to kick starting your best, active life!