Thinking of working out, but you’re a little afraid?
Or maybe you’re afraid of getting bulging muscles. (Don’t worry ladies, that’s highly unlikely.)
Think you’re too weak or too old or too lazy, but you want to at least give it a try?
Then I want to quickly tell you how it’s going to change your life. I mean even in your everyday stuff. I’d also like to give you a bit of direction about how to start.
How Working Out Will Change Your Life
The first thing many want when they start on their fitness journey is to look different. Thinner, smaller, tougher, lean. And that may happen, but you need to know right at the start, you’ll get much more out of it than just looks.
Your energy will increase. Assuming you’re eating clean and getting enough calories, the adrenaline and other hormones released into your body by exercise will affect your energy.
Your body will work better. Exercise affects you even at a cellular level. When you’re active, the body will use food more efficiently, and many parts – like the thyroid, endocrine system, pancreas, digestive system – will all signal and function better as a result. It’s pretty amazing how movement (or non-movement) affects the body.
You’ll feel better. Client after client has reported feeling more positive, less depressed or lethargic, more motivated and a feeling of being more capable. Exercise improves mental and emotional health, not just physical.
You can do more normal stuff. I’ve noticed this in my own body. Since I began working out, I can do a lot more on my own. I can bring in all the bags of groceries by myself without huffing and puffing afterward. I can shovel snow without pulling a muscle. My joints are stronger. And, if I need to move the couch or fridge, I can do it easily on my own – all important things for a single grandma!
Working Out – Where to Start
It’s a bit tough to say where to start, because it really depends on where your body is at.
A person recovering from back surgery or a teenager will need a whole different routine than an overweight mid-forties woman who’s otherwise healthy.
It’s always best to get the personalized advice from a coach who can advise you based on your specific needs and fitness level. (I can help with that) So please take the following not as specific personal advice for you to follow, but more as a general guideline.
That said, it’s often best to start slow. For a few reasons. If you’ve been especially sedentary or have health issues, this is especially true. A good beginning for you might be to stretch daily or every other day, and go for a walk or bike ride. Keep it light to start – pushing too hard right off will only destroy your motivation and invite injuries.
The next stage would be to increase intensity by either lengthening the time of your walk or bike ride, or increasing the difficulty, perhaps by traveling uphill or going faster for portions of the workout. A person could also add a cardio workout routine or consider joining an accountability group! Click HERE to ask how!
The (Most Important) Thing Beginners Forget About
Most people stop there, forgetting to add the vital element of weight lifting (resistance training).
Wait ladies – before you envision giant barbells and bulging muscles – that’s not what I mean. Not at all.
Here’s the truth about muscles. If you don’t make them work, they weaken. They weaken a lot and actually shrink (atrophy), becoming nearly useless. A lack of exercise leads to atrophy of skeletal muscle, which essentially leads to a smaller number and size of the muscle cells!
Lifting is Easier Than You Think
Just so you know, lifting doesn’t have to be this big, demanding ordeal. I’ve been working out for years, and only lift 2-3 times a week. The rest is cardio. It doesn’t take huge amounts of time to get results.
It may suit you best to start out with smaller weights (3-5 lbs) even once a week, and work up to 10 or 15 as you gain strength.
The bottom line: if you don’t use your muscles, they’re going to leave you.
You need them. Work them. Even just a little at first. Starting small is okay.
The important thing is that you start.
To get tips about getting started on clean eating, click HERE.
To join the athletic grandma community, enter your email address HERE and get a free download about how to improve your self-discipline!