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Your Journey to Health and Fitness (Including Tips to Motivate Yourself!)

It’s the middle of February now, and I’m sure there are a lot of us trying to stay dedicated to the basic New Year’s resolutions of staying active, working out, getting into shape, etc. These are some of the easiest resolutions to come up with, but some of the hardest to hold ourselves to. Last year, my resolution was also to start working out more, and I am proud to say that I have actually stuck with it! I honestly can’t believe that it used to not be part of my daily routine. So, if you are interested in starting your own fitness journey—and you might not know where to begin—this is the article for you!

 

If I’m being completely honest, starting your journey is the hardest part, so here are a few things I did that I think would be helpful to you:

For People Going Into the Gym:

Arrive with a plan. It’s always so much easier arriving at the gym knowing exactly what exercises you’re doing. However, I understand how difficult it might be to decide what you should be doing. Most of the time, I save workouts from my favorite fitness Instagram accounts, and then just have the Instagram app open while I am in there. That way, I don’t have to come up with the workout myself, and can follow their lead—while also being able to modify whatever I want to. Most of the posts are set up with the list of exercises in the caption, and then slides of videos showing how to do them. Here are a few that I follow:

Sam Taylor

Allison Lloyd

Melanie Stewart

Natalie Bally

Act confident. Even though you might not be, something that always helps me is acting confident. Find what makes you feel confident and use that to your advantage. Whether it’s wearing a cute outfit, listening to a really good playlist, or bringing a buddy along with you, incorporate it into your routine. Especially at first, it sometimes feels like literally everyone is staring at you, but I promise that’s not the case. So, go in there with some confidence, and don’t get in your head about things—just do you! Remember, everyone in there was in the same position as you at some point.

For Those Working Out at Home:

It’s hard to know what types of equipment people have at home because it varies with everyone. So, in order to reach everyone, I think it’s best to give suggestions that revolve around fitness involving no equipment or very minimal equipment. When I started working out at home, following classes on apps or on YouTube really helped guide me. It’s kind of like using Instagram in the gym! I love the app FitOn. There are tons of different types of workouts of all different lengths and styles, all for free! Some of those include: yoga, HIIT, cardio, toning, kickboxing, strength, and barre—something for everyone. Being at home has its advantages, as you can try something new without anyone else watching you! If you explore, you might discover a newfound love for something!

Create a designated workout spot. I often find it harder to want to workout at home because the atmosphere is not the same as the gym. I feel like I require a lot more motivation to get myself up and moving when my couch and bed are only a couple of steps away. However, something I recommend to everyone is designating a certain place in your room or house solely for working out (if possible). I always set up my yoga mat in the same spot in my room, and I put anything else I would need for my workout right near it. This creates some sort of routine and you will get used to that part of your house as a place for moving your body!

Now, for the second part of this article: tips to stay motivated. Motivation is hard, and people often say that the reason they haven’t started their fitness journey is due to a lack of motivation. In a way, you have to create your own motivation. In my opinion, motivation is a combination of finding something you love to do and pushing yourself on the days you don’t feel like doing that. Here’s a few things I try to remember:

  • The feeling after a good workout. Working out almost never fails to make me feel happier than I was before. Nothing beats feeling powerful, strong, and accomplished! When I’m feeling tired, or debating whether or not I should move my body, I remember that post-workout feeling and it always helps.
  • Prepare whatever you will need to complete your workout. For example, I always pack my gym bag and pick out my outfit the night before so I don’t even have to think about it in the morning. This will make it so much easier and will give you a head start!

  • Make working out something you look forward to. Motivation will come along with working out if you are doing something you enjoy doing. There are so many ways to stay active! Find what you like best and incorporate it into your daily routine.

  • Focus on yourself and remember what your personal goals are. It’s so easy to compare yourself to others, especially while on social media or at the gym. Try to remember that everyone has their own goals and are in different parts of their own journeys. I remember struggling at first, feeling like my goals were too far out of reach and wanting to give up, but try to take it step by step and appreciate any progress you’ve made along the way!

Well, that about wraps up all of my advice! I hope this can help you in beginning your own fitness journey, or better the one that you have already started. Remember to do you and show up for yourself! Wishing you all the best of luck!

XO, 

Emma

 

Edited by: Alicia Tebeau-Sherry

Hi! I'm Emma & I'm currently a sophomore at UVM studying Health Sciences.
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