Most of us, me included, tend to approach our goals in life with an all or none approach. We set a goal for ourselves to cut out sugar from our diet, but half way through the first week you are out and about with friends and everyone is having an ice cream and so should you. There is no problem with the ice cream, the problem is that instead of enjoying your ice cream and getting back to your no- sugar diet right after, you get discouraged and tell yourself “diet is not for me”, “I can never eat healthy”, “ I am going to be like this forever” and on and on.
This was just a simple example, but we do this with everything in our life from eating to relationships, to academic goals, and to fitness and exercise.
Yes, the #1 mistake that we can make, when it comes to exercise, is exercising too much.
We usually tend to set unrealistic goals for ourselves. We set a goal to lose 20 lbs by Christmas, which is a month away, so we start a war against our body. We don’t eat enough calories and on top of that we start working out 2 hrs a day vigorously. We continue with this trend for, if lucky, two weeks and then we start getting tired, low in energy, our joints start hurting, and worst of all we step on a scale and we see no change in our weight or very slight weight loss. What happens next? Yes, you guessed it right. We will get discouraged and stop working out. Same as what happened in the ice cream story.
Don’t get me wrong. I am not saying don’t set goals for yourselves or don’t work out hard. I love breaking into sweet, finishing a 30 minute HIIT workout, lifting weights. All I am saying is to listen to your body. Don’t look at the models on the cover of your workout DVDs and say I want to have that body in 30 days, the fact is that the model in the cover has been probably working out for years and is a professional athlete.
When it comes to workout, like anything else in life, you need to ease your way into it. If you have not worked out in a very long time, start with a walking and slowly increase your intensity. If you like to build muscle and you have never lifted weights before, start by going through the poses first to make sure your posture is correct and slowly add weight.
Remember, when it comes to exercise, your goal should be to become a healthier you and get your best body, not somebody else’s body.
Here is my advice, work out to become your best and as always:
Stay happy and healthy