Common Mistakes People Make When Starting An Exercise Program
Most people struggle to achieve results within a few months of starting an exercise program. In some cases, results can take longer than expected. However, it becomes easier to attain your exercise goals with the proper guidance and training.
We don’t always know what our bodies want, so we keep looking for answers that don’t help us satisfy the basic requirements. Hiring a personal coach/trainer that enables you to take care of your body in a holistic way can make a great deal of difference in your life.
When starting an exercise program, there are some basic pitfalls you can dodge to ensure you get fit and stay fit the right way. The expert Matthew Kostek at Matt K Training has put together a list of the common mistakes to avoid when starting to work out.
1. Having unrealistic expectations
We believe we can get back to what we used to be or do what we used to do simply by incorporating some extra time into our schedule. We do not consider the changes that occur physically and socially, including age, family situation, and work stress. Over the years, we forget how many habits we pick up impact our ability and/or readiness to exercise again. For example, ten years of sedentary life causes one to become not only “out of shape” but also habituated to not moving. You must remember that we can’t go back, only forward. Consider how much time and energy you have right now and what you can “exchange” for exercise. Ask yourself what you are willing to do right now, as opposed to how you can just hit the gym every day for an hour after work.
2. Do too much too soon
We want to think that if we used to run five miles a day (which we never did, more like five miles a week), we should be able to start with two miles right away. On paper, this appears to be reasonable, but it is likely not. It’s easy to forget that one has been inactive for the previous ten years and that one’s weight is at an all-time high. Both of these raise the risk for injury if you do too much. At the same time, not having seen a doctor in years for a check-up too becomes an important factor. Make a list of your goals and stick to them. Do you want to stay athletic and healthy as you get older, or are you trying to prove something by reenacting your past glory? It’s simple to tell yourself to take it easy at first, but it’s too easy to get caught up in the new fitness culture of personal bests and fitness gear and wind up pushing yourself too hard too quickly. So, to be safe, check in with your Doc, start slower than you think you need to, and check in with yourself frequently, to make sure you don’t get carried away too soon.
3. Forgetting about the other two pillars for staying healthy
Any exercise or fitness goal will be impossible unless we eat well and recover effectively. Increasing our physical activity can have an immediate and long-term impact on our metabolism. Do our present eating patterns encourage extra physical activity and recovery? Are we giving ourselves enough time to recover physically and mentally? I frequently hear people with highly hectic schedules say things like, “I’ll just set my alarm an hour earlier in the morning and workout then,” and “I’ve done it before.” Sweat can cool the body but cannot undo the cheesecakes and beers consumed the night before. We must eat, recover (which includes excellent sleep), and exercise well to attain our fitness goals. Find some awake time that may be better spent and switch it out for exercise (screen time, for example), eat regular meals, and go to bed at a constant time that allows you to obtain seven to nine hours of sleep. Now stick to your plan and see your odds of success rise!
4. Focusing on technicalities rather than the process
Your muscles don’t care if you do exactly five sets of squats, if you spend forty-five minutes on the arc trainer at one hundred and ten strides per minute, or if you follow every magazine workout plan to the letter. Every workout doesn’t have to be flawless, nor does it have to cause stiffness or exhaustion. Yes, we need to push ourselves out of our comfort zones, but how we do it, how long we do it, and how much we do it can and should vary. Listen to your body, adjust your workout for that day as needed, and periodically take a rest day or two.
To avoid these and other mistakes, reach out to the expert at Matt K Training, serving clients across Northampton, Springfield, Palmer, Blandford, Greenfield, Deerfield, Amherst, Chicopee, and the surrounding areas. I also have remote options through my holistic nutrition coaching program, as well as my remote personal training program. You can also find exercise and nutrition coaching on my website.
Looking to improve your diet/eating habits? I am now offering remote Nutrition Coaching.