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3 Things to Remember When You Start Exercising

COVID-19 has not only drastically changed my life, but it’s also affected my weight during quarantine. I think it’s safe to say that some of us have put on a few extra pounds over the past several months, but that’s okay. 

Most of us are still working or learning from home, and now is the perfect opportunity to not only lose the weight we’ve gained but also start a healthy lifestyle. Here are some things I think you should know from my personal experience with exercising. 

woman sweating and stretching
Photo by Avi Richards from Unsplash

Take it slow

A mistake that I made when I started exercising was pushing myself to limits that I couldn’t reach. When you begin to exercise you need to act like a beginner. This means not doing long, intense workouts that your body isn’t used to. 

You can’t expect yourself to run five miles if you’ve never run long distance before. You can’t expect yourself to bench press 30 lbs if you’ve never lifted before. I’m gonna be honest with you and say the first few workouts are hard. 

Your body is adjusting to different movements it hasn’t done before. You’ll feel exhaustion and soreness all over your body, but you’ll become more accustomed to it. This is when your body grows stronger and can handle harder and longer exercises. 

Roased Veg
Christin Urso / Spoon

Eat healthier foods

A common saying I hear a lot from trainers is, “Abs are made in the kitchen,” and they’re right. You can’t expect results if you don’t change your eating habits. What you put in your body can help your performance when exercising.

Foods that are rich in fiber, iron and vitamins will increase your endurance. You won’t get tired as quickly as you did before and will be able to keep momentum throughout your exercise. It’s always beneficial to drink water too because proper hydration also improves how well you perform while working out. 

I also want to emphasize that when you change your eating habits, be kind to yourself. Don’t completely eliminate all your favorite foods. It’s okay to eat something unhealthy every now and then, so don’t beat yourself up when you have a piece of candy or a cheeseburger.

The key is to eat healthy in moderation and treat yourself to anything you want every now and then. Plus, eating healthy doesn’t have to be a drag. You can totally cook healthy meals that are nutritious and delicious. Be creative and have fun in the kitchen!

Running Shoes Water Bottle
Jocelyn Hsu / Spoon

Don’t expect immediate results 

In our everyday lives, we are surrounded by advertisements that promise to give us quick results to change the way we look. With exercise, there are no overnight results or instant transformations. You have to be patient with the process you’re going through. 

This is probably the hardest thing about exercise. We are so focused on the end goal that we don’t pay attention to everything in the middle. I know from personal experience that it can be frustrating stepping on the weight scale and looking down at a number you don’t want to see.

It makes me feel so defeated. When I first started working out, I kept blaming myself for not pushing harder through my exercises and being resilient towards unhealthy foods. I don’t want you to feel the way I did, so be patient, and don’t be so easily discouraged! Instead, use your dark moments as motivation to try harder to reach your goal. 

I hope these tips help you to start living a healthier life! 


Hello! My name is Kennedy Curtis and I'm a sophomore studying journalism and creative writing at DePaul. I absolutely love the purpose of HerCampus and I'm excited to write interesting stories for you all to read.
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