Starting a fitness routine is a big step toward living a healthy life. However, as important as physical activity and diet is for your health, it’s not everything. Your mental and emotional health is just as important, and too many people neglect this area in their lives. If you want to live at your full potential, you need to focus on caring for your whole self, which includes having a consistent fitness routine and practicing self-care. Here are five tips for getting started.
Find a Routine You Love
If you want to set yourself up for a successful fitness routine that lasts longer than your typical new year’s resolution, you need to find something you enjoy. Depending on many factors, this could mean anything from signing up for a cycling class and eating a vegetarian diet to joining a CrossFit box and eating a paleo diet. There will always be days when you’re not feeling it, but you should aim for a routine that you don’t dread every morning. Otherwise, you’ll eventually burn out and be back where you started.
Make It Practical to Work Out
Along with finding a type of exercise you enjoy, it’s important that it fits practically into your life. In other words, don’t sign up at a gym that’s an hour’s drive from your home or office. Such a commute will not only get old really fast, but it will also keep you from having a life outside of the gym. Some days will call for a quick workout, and that’s when having a home gym can come in handy. It doesn’t take a lot of money or gear to get started, either — all you need to get started are kettlebells ($11.99 and up) and resistance bands ($19.99). If limited space is keeping you from creating a home gym, you can move some of your items to a self-storage unit. Storage Etc. – Los Feliz offers the best value in Los Angeles for a 10-by-15 unit at $209 per month.
Make Time for Rest.
Getting rest is also an important aspect to living a healthy life. When we don’t get enough sleep, our minds and bodies can’t fully recover from the day’s activities. Sooner or later, this will catch up to us. If you really want to live up to your full health potential, remember to make sleep a priority. Along with sleep, taking breaks from working out every now and then also provides your mind and body with an opportunity to get some rest.
Set Aside Time for Other Activities
It’s also important that you don’t let fitness rule your life. Exercise is one of the best things you can do to relieve stress, but when it becomes an obsession, it can do more harm than good. It’s essential to allow time in your life for activities other than working out.
Some examples of other stress-relieving activities are:
- Breathing exercises
- Warm Epsom salt baths
- Waking up slowly with a coffee
- Spending time in nature
Splurge Every Now and Then
This is a fun one: Don’t be afraid to eat a splurge meal or spend an evening bingeing your favorite TV show. The key here is to keep everything in balance with your health routine and maintain your self-discipline. If you’re not careful, it can be a slippery slope that leads to frequent consumption of doughnuts and missed workouts. If it’s really just from time to time, however, it can add a little joy to your life.
Starting to work out and eat better is an important step to bettering your health, but it’s essential to set yourself up for long-term success. Find a type of exercise and diet that you enjoy doing, and make sure it’s feasible for you to do it on a regular basis. Also, prioritize rest, make time for other activities, and allow yourself to splurge every now and then. When you come up with an overall health routine that works, you’ll be well on your way to a more fulfilling life.