You may be so out of shape that you can’t believe anything will help. Don’t despair. You can be better than you were yesterday and even better the next and the next day. Getting fit isn’t an all or nothing proposition. You don’t wake up and suddenly find yourself buff and slender. It happens one day at a time, little by little. If you set a huge goal, such as losing 100 pounds or running a marathon, you could get discouraged early in your program. That’s one reason that creating smaller goals to reach the ultimate goal is important.
Creating smaller goals that lead to the ultimate goal can boost your enthusiasm.
While nobody is discouraging having an ultimate goal, it shouldn’t be the only one you have. If your goal is to shed 100 pounds, start by focusing on losing ten percent of your body weight in a month. That’s a smaller goal that’s achievable in a short period, so you won’t get discouraged. If you want to improve your endurance, set a goal to increase the amount you can lift by ten percent or extend the amount of time you can run at top speed by ten percent. These smaller goals are easier to reach and will give you the incentive to continue.
Don’t expect perfection, just improvement.
Sure, you might start out with great resolve and stick with the program faithfully, at least for a while. One night, you eat not one but two bowls of ice cream or even a half of cake. That’s a huge break from the healthy eating you had in mind to shed weight, but it doesn’t mean you should just quit! It’s a small step back and may even help you shed pounds. Yes! Sometimes a cheat day prevents your body from going into starvation mode and actually makes weight loss easier. Jump back on the wagon no matter what happens and continue to strive for those goals.
Your health care professional can help you see the improvement.
If you want more reassurance that you’re getting healthier, get a checkup before you start your program. It serves two purposes. The first is to insure you’re healthy enough to undergo a program of regular exercise and secondly, to get a benchmark before you start. After just a month or so of exercising, have your numbers checked again. Your blood pressure should be lower, cholesterol better and sugar levels improved. The difference may not be huge, but enough to see the difference regular exercise and healthy eating makes.
Notice how much your mood improves. Not only does exercising burn off hormones from stress, it also stimulates the production of hormones that make you feel great.
You’ll see the difference in your complexion. Regular exercising and healthy eating clears your complexion and gives you a youthful glow.
You’ll notice an increase in your cognitive abilities. Exercising helps you think clearer and creates new neural paths in the brain.
Noticing and appreciating the small improvements helps you stay on the straight and narrow. It boosts your morale and makes the effort you take far more worthwhile.