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The Keys to Fitness Success: Routine, Consistency and Healthy Eating

We've all been there - getting motivated to get in shape, hitting the gym. A week or two goes by and it is hard. Sometimes really hard and you slowly start falling off the workout wagon again. But why? Why is it so hard to stick to your fitness routine? 


The truth is, getting fit and staying that way is a lifestyle, not a temporary diet or workout craze. It requires commitment to adopting sustainable habits in three key areas: exercise routine, consistency and healthy eating.


Finding Your Fitness Routine


The first step is finding a style of exercise you actually enjoy. If you dread going to the gym to slog away on the treadmill, you'll quickly lose motivation. Don't just default to what's trendy or convenient - experiment to find activities that really speak to you. The options are endless: weightlifting, dance classes, martial arts, rock climbing, team sports, hiking, cycling, swimming, yoga, pilates ... and the list goes on. 


Once you find an activity that gets you excited to move your body, you're already on your way. But don't stop at just one option. Create a workout routine that incorporates cross-training with a blend of cardiovascular exercise, strength training, and mobility work. This balanced approach provides greater fitness gains and keeps you challenged; your trainer can also help you generate a plain that works best for your lifestyle It's also a great way to prevent exercise plateaus and reduce your risk of overuse injuries.


Staying Consistent 

 

So what now. The next challenge is sticking to them consistently. Weight loss and fitness gains require regular exercise sustained over months and years - not just a few intense weeks. Slow and steady when it comes to weight loss really is best and will stick most likely. Build exercise into your weekly routine with small, achievable goals you can maintain long-term. Experts recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise per week, plus 2-3 strength training sessions. But even just 30 minutes per day can have a big impact, and this could mean a walk, a game of hockey or pickleball, yoga and a family walk.


Stay motivated by finding a workout partner, setting concrete goals, and tracking your progress. Apps and wearable fitness trackers make it easy to monitor metrics like steps, distance, calories and workout time. Celebrate small wins along the way, and whatever you do, don't beat yourself up over the occasional lapse. The key is forming habitual routines that become almost unconscious over time.


Healthy Eating Habits


Of course, exercise alone isn't enough - eating nutritious foods in sensible portions is essential for overall fitness and managing your weight. Develop meal planning habits focused on lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and healthy fats. Stay hydrated, limit processed foods and added sugars and watch your portion control. Many people struggle with this. You can overeat on a healthy diet! Allow for indulgences in moderation, as no food needs to be permanently off-limits.  


When it comes to diets, avoid any program that promises extremely rapid weight loss or eliminates entire food groups. Those types of extreme, restrictive plans may work for a few weeks, but they're not sustainable paths to lasting lifestyle change. Instead, make gradual adjustments by adding more nutrient-dense foods to crowd out less healthy options.


The path to fitness isn't about punishing yourself with grueling workouts or extreme diets that leave you miserable. It's about cultivating a lifestyle that prioritizes activities you enjoy and foods that nourish you. With the right routine, consistency, and eating habits, you'll have all the tools to build your fittest, healthiest self for the long haul.

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