A woman recently asked me how long I’ve been weight training and my response was, “for about 20 years.” Saying it out loud was a bit shocking to me! She told me that she had only begun her journey a little over a year ago and is now in her early 40’s. Having reached a breaking point, she was feeling badly about herself and decided to make a change for the better. I think it’s great that she took charge and made the necessary changes to have a more positive perspective about her health and her body and didn’t concern herself with it being “too late”.
In that moment, I realized that I really do take my lifestyle for granted. This is a behavior that I have always exemplified, and to others, it can be an extreme change from their norm. As with anything new, it can be a true challenge to embark on. Not knowing where or how to begin can be extremely intimidating. I understand that a vast majority are in her shoes. She didn’t let fear hold her back, instead, she used it to motivate her.
Today, more than a year later, she is in terrific shape, makes better food choices and is proud of how far she’s come. Isn’t that enough to make you want to start right now? So my plea to you is, don’t ever feel as though it’s too late to begin an exercise program because it will NEVER be too late to care about your health. Don’t wait for high blood pressure, diabetes or heart disease to make the first move.
I’ve put together a few suggestions to get you headed in the right direction. It’s so important for you to understand that we all start somewhere, we all have our own personal reasons and it truly is NEVER too late to start. Learning to put yourself first and taking good care of yourself on all levels of physical, mental and spiritual health is something we should all aspire to work on continuously. Love yourself enough to take the first step.
Ask for help
Never be afraid to ask for help. Often times, you will find that friends, family members or others that are active and fit enjoy sharing tips if you simply ask. For me, I love sharing, but only when asked. I will help in any way that I can if someone cares enough to ask me for my opinion, but I never want anyone to feel that my way is the only way.
Hire a trainer
One of the best ways you can learn proper form and technique is to enlist the help of a professional. In joining a gym, it can be intimidating, especially if you do not know your way around. A trainer can help teach you the proper exercises to help get you closer to your goals. After a handful of sessions, you may be off and running on your own and eager to create fun workouts.
If you are unable to get to the gym or hire a trainer, never fear! At home training can be just as intense for the fitness enthusiast. Performing just 10-20 minutes (several days a week) of high intensity interval training, with little more than bodyweight can get you in amazing shape. I personally did this after having my last baby. I was actually bored with the gym and needed a change. This provided me a convenient alternative and adding in things like kettle bells and weighted sandbags can spice it up and provide an additional challenge. I even have several FREE at home workouts on my website www.tiffanyleegaston.com
Train with a buddy
If you have a spouse or a friend interested in their fitness, do it together! Having a gym partner can hold you accountable just like a trainer. You’ll not only be showing up for yourself, you’ll feel a certain obligation not to let the other person down. Make sure this person is just as serious as you and it could well be the mojo you are missing.
Make Healthier Food Choices
A tremendous portion of your efforts need not only take place in the gym. Considering more than 85% of what you look like is influenced by what you put in your mouth, learning to prepare healthier meals plays a major role in your transformation. Beginning with shopping around the perimeter of the grocery store can help steer you clear of temptation. All the real food is found here, so unless you need toilet paper, stay on the outer rim!