Just because you haven’t reached your fitness goals yet, doesn’t mean you won’t ever reach them. The key to reaching your goals is to decide that you’re not going to give up this time. Here, we’ve put together a 10 point plan that will help you on your way to finally getting fit. If you take these points seriously, you should find that you eventually meet your goals! It takes time, but it’ll be worth it when you get to where you’ve always wanted to be!
Take a look at the 10 points below to get started:
- Define What Your Goals Need To Be
First off, you need to clearly define your goals. Getting fit isn’t a clearly defined goal alone! You need to decide whether you’re going to lose fat, build muscle, or attempt to do both at the same time. However, doing both at the same time can feel nigh on impossible and be very demotivating, so it’s usually best to focus on one goal first. If you’re already ‘skinny fat’, then building muscle is probably your best option first. You will likely put on more fat as you build muscle, but when it comes to burning fat, you’ll burn it even faster as the body is a fat burning machine when it has more muscle!
Remember that if you start burning fat and you don’t already have much muscle tone, you’re likely going to look skinny more than anything. It’s down to personal preference, but it’s worth bearing in mind! Once you know what your goals are, you can create your diet plan and training plan accordingly.
- Assess Your Current Diet
Take a look at your current diet. If you haven’t reached your goals but you’ve been trying and failing, you can usually pinpoint the reason somewhere in your diet. Diet is far more important than exercise; you’ll never out-train a bad diet! So, here’s what you need to do based on your goals:
- Fat loss – go into a reasonable calorie deficit. Take it slowly. You’re not starving yourself ever. You go into a small deficit, assess your progress, and then go from there. When you hit a plateau, you can cut calories further. Taking it super slow will stop you from taking it too far, starving yourself, and going on insane binges. You need to make sure your body is getting the nutrients that it needs!
- Muscle gain – go into a reasonable calorie surplus. Again, take it slowly. This doesn’t mean you should be eating cake and chips all day long either. You should still make healthy choices, as health should be your number one priority, with aesthetics coming second! Have a treat, but be sensible.
You can use apps like Lifesum and MyFitnessPal to track your food and make sure you’re hitting your calorie goals. To make your results even better, look at your macronutrients and not just your calories. This means paying attention to the amount of protein, carbs, and fats you have each day to ensure a balanced diet and the best results. If you focus solely on calories, you may be getting too much of one macro and not enough of another. You’ll also learn more about your body, like weather a high fat or high carb diet works best for you. In general, it’s always best to keep protein fairly high for muscle building, repair, and maintenance.
- Download A Training Plan
Once you know what you need to be doing with your diet, it’s time to figure out the training side of things. Good news: you can find hundreds of free plans online. You can even search YouTube and put your own plan together. It’s up to you whether you want to alternate upper and lower body days, or whether you want to do a traditional split. You can even do full body days. It all depends on what you enjoy. The important thing is that you’re resistance training, challenging yourself, getting stronger, and aiming to do so consistently.
When it comes to cardio, this again depends on your goals. Getting in lots of steps per day is a good idea for general health purposes. You don’t need to be doing intense cardio unless you are looking to burn fat, or you seriously enjoy it. Bear in mind if you want to keep doing intense cardio while building muscle, you may slow your results.
It’s always better to walk into the gym with some kind of written plan, as many people walk in without one, mess around on different pieces of equipment for a while, and just leave. It’s safe to say this isn’t an effective workout. Free weights are best, and having a plan that has been put together with a method behind the madness too. If you like, you can find a trainer on social media (such as Instagram) that seems legit and buy a plan from them. They shouldn’t set you back too much at all, unless you’re looking to get weekly check ins with them to stay on track too. How you stay accountable is up to you.
Personal trainers are also an option, but you can get great results with online trainers, and they are far more affordable.
Remember, although you’re looking to challenge yourself with your training, form is the most important thing. It can be tempting to just keep going heavier and heavier, but if your form is compromised you risk injury. You won’t be getting the full benefit of the exercise either. Watch plenty of form videos, and ask a trainer for help if you’re unsure!
- Look Into Accessories That Can Help
Don’t go out and buy accessories before you have a good idea of what you really need. Some things really work, and some things are nothing but fads. You can discover details on compression socks and make your mind up on those for yourself. Then you have fancy protein shakers/water bottles, fitness trackers, and similar items. It’s a good idea to get into the fitness habit first to ensure that these things actually get used!
- Record Your Progress Properly
Sometimes, you won’t be able to see how far you’ve come. You may think your progress has stalled for the past few weeks, and this can lead you on a spiral of binge eating, skipping the gym, and feeling super guilty for doing so. If you record your progress properly, then you won’t have to worry about this. Don’t go by weight alone – it can fluctuate for any number of reasons. What you really want to do is pay attention to your measurements. Also pay attention to how you feel in your clothes, and don’t forget to take pictures. Record your strength too! It’s all progress, and isn’t all based on how you look.
- Learn As Much As You Can As You Go
Make sure you continue to learn as much as you can as you go. The fitness industry can be confusing, what with the many ways of eating, training, and so on. It’s better you keep things simple for yourself in the beginning – so don’t focus on eating a set number of meals, making sure you’re following intermittent fasting, or anything that might overwhelm you. Instead eat well and stick to your macros as best you can, train consistently, and track your progress. Simple.
Learn about healthy cooking, superfoods, reading nutrition labels, and anything else that can help you on your journey.
- Switch Things Up Occasionally
You can’t do the same program for weeks and weeks in a row. You’ll get so bored! Switch things up occasionally by swapping out a few exercises, and don’t just rotate the same meals if you’re somebody who needs variety. It can all depend on you as a person, but finding ways to switch things up will usually help to stay focused.
- Find Balance – Don’t Deprive Yourself
Getting fit isn’t about eating clean all of the time and training 6 days a week. It’s about finding balance. It’s about making fitness a part of your lifestyle and truly enjoying it. Unless you’re training for a competition, you shouldn’t worry too much if you fancy a chocolate bar. Just be honest with yourself about how balanced you’re being if you’re still not reaching your goals.
- Never Forget Your Reason Why
What is your ‘why?’ is it to live longer, be happier, or set a good example? Keeping this reason in the forefront of your mind will make you more likely to stick to it.
- Work On Changing And Strengthening Your Mindset
Finally, remember your mindset has a lot to do with how successful you are. Constantly work on strengthening and changing your mindset so that you feel good about fitness and health. Believe that you can do it and you’re halfway there! Visualisation is a wonderful tool for fitness goals, and many athletes use it too.
Are you ready to get fit, finally? Leave your own thoughts below!