How To Start Working Out

 

4 Steps That Will Help Get You In The Gym

Why is it so difficult to start working out and so easy to stop?

Being fit has always been a dream – albeit a distant one. I never played sports growing up so my athletic discipline has always been.. nonexistent to say the least. Something about being dedicated to yourself and your body really gets me excited,though. (Major self-discipline envy)

Obsessively following Instagram fit pages, my mind is forever telling me I am ready to kick ass…but when it comes to actually going, there is always an excuse. I’m too tired, I had such a long day at work, One more day isn’t going to matter, I’ll just eat a salad for lunch instead, you name it. 

After seeing my boyfriend sporting a serious 6 pack, I finally forced myself to go and hated every minute of it. A few weeks, 10 lbs, and a slight line in my obliques turned my hate for the gym into a short lived obsession.

I started off kicking ass, but then there is that one week. That week that quickly turns into a few months and I can’t help but wonder how to start working out again. 

My “week” came when I was packing for my move to California. After a few months of being in San Diego, I was so unhappy with how I looked and felt. One night I was sitting home complaining and my boyfriend shared one of his favorite quotes with me:

 

“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over again and over again and expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein

UGH! The feeling when someone tells you something you don’t want to hear. I wanted my new gym-self to last, not fizzle out.

I’m not a cold-turkey kind of girl, so I knew I needed small changes to mentally and physically prepare myself to get in the gym.

The 4 simple changes I made were:
1. Creating routine and self awareness
2. Planning my breakfast
3. Buying some cute workout gear
4. Establishing a comfort zone

My stipulations where that the changes needed to be:
– Easy enough to incorporate into a busy lifestyle and
– Subtle enough where I didn’t break down and binge on oreos after a week.

 

1. Create routine and self-awareness

how to start working out again pillbox pill organizer probiotics fish oil womens multi vitamin

This sounds so weird, I know, but this was the first step I took to creating some routine in my life again. I’ve always been terrible at remembering to take my vitamins so I went to Whole Foods, bought myself a pill box, some women’s multi-vitamin, fish oil, and probiotics. Here’s some more detail on the brands I decided to go with and why:
1. The Pill Box I chose is super generic. This one is pretty similar on Amazon. I think I payed $1.50 for mine. If you don’t want to order online your local pharmacy or supermarket should have it. It is perfect as a starter. My only qualm with it is that some of the pills and vitamins I take are HUGE – so this pill box is barely big enough to fit everything. Depending on the dosage of the brands and pills you choose, this might be too small for you. This is a great example of a larger 7 day pill box. Again, find a size that works for you. The smaller one is a great place to start!

2. I use Spectrum Fish Oil because it has an EPA to DHA ratio of 18:12 (one of the highest I’ve found!)

WTF is that, you ask? Here’s a little breakdown:
– There are long chain and short chain Omega 3’s
– Short Chain Omega 3’s are found in things like flaxseeds.
– Long Chain Omega 3’s are found in fish, fish oil, shellfish, etc.
– There are two types of long chain Omega 3’s: EPA and DHA

Basically — pregnant women, breastfeeding women, and children until the age of 5 need omega 3’s that are high in DHA to help cognitive function. After the age of 5, we should be consuming omega 3’s that are EPA dominant to improve your brain, skin, and allergies.

3. Garden of Life mykind Organics Women’s Once Daily I like this brand because it’s organic and it is a once daily. As I said before, I’m SO bad at remembering to take pills, so once a day is necessary for me. There are so many multi-vitamins to choose from, you just have to find the one that’s right for you. I read some great reviews about this New Chapter Organic Multi-Vitamin, which is also once daily. The price points for solid quality multi-vitamins seems to about in the $25-$35 range. I know it can seem like a lot to spend on a “bottle of pills”, but don’t forget that it lasts a long time and you are paying for your health! The best investment you can make 🙂

4. I honestly just bought these Probiotics because they were BOGO. They are decent, but there are much better brands out there. If you will be carrying the pill box in your bag or with you, I would suggest finding a probiotic that does not need refrigeration, an “SBO Probiotic”. I honestly prefer the refrigerated kind. Its live culture – you want to preserve it. The Garden of Life RAW Probiotics have great reviews and a high volume of live culture. I’ll probably try these after mine are done. If you are purchasing pills that require refrigeration online, make sure they ship it with a cold pack – don’t want that culture to die!

Disclaimer: Not pictured here, but I like to take Cranberry pills because I have very sensitive kidneys. You know your body best – and if you don’t, start to get to know it. Maybe start tracking everything you eat so you have a better understanding of how certain foods affect your body. I learned I was allergic to quinoa like this!!! What makes you feel good? What makes you feel bad? What is your lifestyle like?

I pack my pill box every single Sunday and keep it in my fridge. I have to put a reminder on my phone to take them every day, but hey whatever works! After about two weeks, I noticed I was really looking forward to taking them every day. I’ve been taking them for a few months now and notice I feel overall healthier. When I skip out on my probiotics, I do get a little bloated. It just blows my mind how self-aware this has made me about my body and what I put into it.

Create a desire to be healthy again!

 

2. Plan Your Breakfast

healthy breakfast rice cakes how to start working out again acai bowl fruits yogurt parfait

Planning my breakfast every morning prevented me from starting my day off with a lot of sugar. When you start the morning with a sugar rush, your body craves it ALL DAY aka sugar crashing. I took a tip from my co-worker and began eating a rice cake with peanut butter and half of a banana each morning. I also just started switching that up with a banana, rolled oats, honey, and cinnamon.
Theses are both great alternative to bread and are both healthy and filling. BAGELS ARE EMPTY CARBS PEOPLE! Carbs, fat, and sugar from whole grains, fruits, and nuts are GOOD FOR YOU! I was no longer daydreaming of donuts and had a lot more energy through out the day. My body felt cleaner and I was craving salads and healthy lunches for the first time in a while. Other breakfast alternatives are eggs, yogurt with granola and fruit, or Acai bowls. You don’t have to eat the same thing every day, just get your body used to eating a filling, healthy breakfast each morning.

I also recently starting batching my morning smoothies. It has seriously changed my life. I will never be able to start my day without a smoothie again. I basically put fruit and veggies in 7 big ziploc bags and throw them in the freezer. Each morning I add almond/coconut milk and one of the smoothie bags to the blender and bam! It takes two minutes and I start every morning with NATURAL sugar instead 🙂

Teach your body to crave less artificial sugar and junk!

 

3. Get Yourself Some Cute Gear!

how to start working out

My workout clothes were never the super cute ones you see on instagram. I usually grabbed a pair of leggings and big tee shirt. I also didn’t have a good pair of sneakers. I was never excited about wearing my work out gear to say the least. It seemed like good workout clothes were an arm and a leg and I didn’t want to spend so much money on them when I wasn’t even working out yet. If I wanted to get excited about the gym and getting ready to go, I needed work out clothes I didn’t feel embarrassed putting on. With little research I realized there were a ton of affordable options.Zara just recently launched a gym wear line. I also really love Forever21. Their leggings are thick, not see-through, and really cute! I especially love this pair ($20, hell yes!). I’ve also found that Marshall’s is AMAZING for activewear. They have great prices and a variety of brands. I particularly like Marshalls for their sports bras and sometimes pants too. They are a hit or miss. I recently discovered that Old Navy, too, has affordable and cute workout clothes. Their pants weren’t as nice as F21, but their tanks and shirts were super cute and mostly $10.
Im super proud to say that every single thing I am wearing in this picture was on sale! HELL YES 🙂 The Nike’s are Free TR 5.0 and I got them on sale for $68. The Sports Chalet by my apartment was closing so I was super lucky. I actually see they’re on sale at Nike website. The shorts were on sale at F21 for $4.90, so they were a MAJOR score. Here is some more F21 Athletic gear on sale. Can’t emphasize enough how much I love the thickness of their bottoms. The tank is $6 from Old Navy and the sports bra is from Marshalls. I think it was $12. So there you have it – $23 for an entire workout outfit (minus the shoes).

Get excited about seeing yourself in activewear.
4. Create a Comfort Zone

how to start working out

Creating a comfort zone for yourself is incredibly important and really helps relieve that initial intimidation of going back to the gym. Not feeling confident in the gym is a huge barrier to working out. I know SO many people (myself included) who have felt too insecure to try a new workout or push themselves to the limit because they are so worried about what everyone at the gym thinks. Don’t forget that none of those people were born with abs. Every single person started where you are today and understands it isn’t easy. People are in the gym to better themselves and generally won’t make fun of you. Unless they’re assholes – then it doesn’t matter anyway. If you’re still feeling sensitive and insecure, get yourself a pair of heavy duty headphones! They really help you get into the zone and tune everyone else out. It is just you and your workout!

Establish a comfortable environment

At this point, you should be eating healthier, feeling a bit more energized, and creating some routine in your life. Get yourself in the gym 2-3 days a week and be on your way to a healthier you. I dont suggest going balls to the wall — these tips are meant to help you change your lifestyle a bit for a sustainable gym routine, not the short lived obsession we’ve all been through before.

Do you guys have any tips for getting yourself motivated?

xx,AF

 

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