Lifestyle of Fitness

[mk_dropcaps style="fancy-style"]O[/mk_dropcaps]ne of the most common frustrations when it comes to working out is doing something that is both practical (fits into your schedule and rhythm of life) but is also enjoyable.  Just as we  must change our eating our habits in a way that is sustainable, we must take the same approach with exercise.  We started this month addressing nutrition in Fit or Fanatic because that is where most of our results is built from.  Our physical fitness is where our shape, strength and functional movement is developed. What are the crucial mindsets to have for healthy exercise?

[mk_blockquote style="line-style" font_family="none" text_size="16" align="center"]1)   Progressive training not radical increases.[/mk_blockquote]

Our bodies are built to adapt which means we can put them through quite a bit of stress and we can still recover.  The thing to ensure is your consistency over the long haul. We must make sure to not do too much too fast.  This will over load your system and diminish your capacity to adapt.  We are only as good as our ability to recover. That means for lasting results and to avoid injuries means finding the right mix of pushing your body and adequate rest.

One way to push yourself within a workout is to have a workout partner to add encouragement.  We are built for relationship, and perform at a higher level alongside others.  An added benefit is the accountability that comes with a workout partner or at least supportive friend or family member.  We stay progressive when we know there will be another person checking in on us and in the process with us.  Remember your fitness and health is important enough to invest in for the long haul.  You do not have to be perfect, but maintaining your health as a priority takes more than just your own determination.  Make sure you are including others in the process.  That will make it more fun as well

[mk_blockquote style="line-style" font_family="none" text_size="16" align="center"]2)  Cycle in variety- aka Periodization[/mk_blockquote]

Our bodies take on average 4-6 weeks to begin to see the benefits of a change of workout routine.  My favorite way to change up workout programs is seasonally at most or every six months.

It is important to find workouts that you enjoy, and that may mean you cycle from 2-3 forms you know you love.  As our bodies are built to adapt we have to throw new challenges at them in order to keep them challenged.  If you keep doing the same thing without any variety or advancement your body will decondition.  Variety is not only beneficial to keep fresh the workout and fitness process, but to be able to push our bodies to new levels.

There is a healthy tension in changing things up too frequently and not enough.  Once you find something you enjoy stick with it at least for 4-6 weeks to begin to see the benefits.  You will not get the full benefit if you change routine too often.  Your body needs to learn proper muscle memory of certain movements before strength can truly improve.

Treat it like a game, listen to your body and adjust as necessary to keep it fun. But do not forget to track your growth.

[mk_blockquote style="line-style" font_family="none" text_size="16" align="center"]3)  Consistency over concentration.[/mk_blockquote]

We think more of a good thing must be better.  Not always true.  It is a common thought that longer workouts are better than short ones.  Well I am here to tell you if you only workout twice a week for an hour that will not get you the same amount of results as working out 4x/week for ½ hour.  It is the same amount of workout, but has more significant impact on your body.  You are able to recover faster, and the shift in your metabolism for that day is impacted from your moderate-intense 30 min workout.

In other words consistency and frequency of workouts is more important the the concentration in one workout.  Ideally we are to workout 5-6 days a week for a minimum of 30 min at the moderate to intense level.

[mk_blockquote style="line-style" font_family="none" text_size="16" align="center"]4)  A lifestyle of fitness is pursuing a moving target.[/mk_blockquote]

However frustrating this statement is, it is time to make peace with it.  Our bodies are always changing.  For better or worse we need to accept this truth and learn to work with it instead of resist it.  What used to be easy and pain free may not continue to be so.  What used to work quickly, may take more time to see results.  When you can roll with the punches time adds in how our bodies feel and perform we will enjoy a lifestyle of activity far more.  It all comes back to what perspective we chose to keep.  Love the highly complex piece of machinery God gave you.  Having had a father who became paralyzed I gained a new gratefulness for being able bodied and the fact I can be independent.  That my body moves with ease (even with some tightness and aches and pains on occasion).  The truth is, having your health is a gift.  We do not know how long we will have it for, so enjoy the fact that you can advance toward a goal.  Once you reach one you get to make a new one.  That is adventurous.  But you must choose to see it as such.  That power is in your hands. Enjoy and use it wisely!

Where to begin?

If you have not been working out I would like to offer a recommendation to you.  It is something that has both gotten me results (even after years of training, as I shifted from the concentrated to consistency MO). It is the Can you 24 workout DVD.  If you are a true beginner start at Level 1.  If you have been working out already 3-4 times a week try out the Level 2.  You can click the links below to order.

Can You 24- Level 1

Can You 24- Level 2

Both DVD’s will give you an 8 week program to follow.  I recommend you put it to the test. I am here to support anyone who is willing to take the challenge.   Comment below if you have questions.