Getting Started: It is More Important Than You Think

One of the reasons I chose the ISSA program to complete my fitness training and get my certification was that it gave me access to an unlimited amount of information and articles. I believe knowledge is power and that everyone needs to be educated. It is not enough to have information. It is important to have the right information.

Going through my daily social media feed, I am impressed with how much fitness/nutrition information is available for us to consume. I am also worried about how much of it is misleading and downright wrong. If you jump into a fitness or diet routine without doing any research, you are going to lose valuable time due to trial and error.

One of the advantages I want to offer my clients and readers are some science-based no-nonsense approaches to creating a better lifestyle. I want you to have a lifestyle that will be beneficial to you and your family. From diet tips and workout routines, I want my readers to trust me to lead them in the right direction.

These are challenging times and many of us are now working out in our homes. From the beginner or the seasoned workout vet, we cannot forget the common sense training do’s and don’ts. The ISSA article, “Beginner Workout Mistakes Everyone Makes,” is a great place to start. These are three of the most crucial mistakes many people make when starting a fitness routine.

What are some common workout mistakes?

1. Skipping the warm-up

Don’t jump into an exercise routine without doing a proper warm-up! Whether you’re about to hit the free weights or do some cardio, a warm-up should always come first.

The warm-up helps to:

  • Slowly increase heart rate
  • Get blood pumping through the blood vessels
  • Increase oxygen intake (to reduce muscle fatigue)
  • Lubricate the joints

A warm-up can be a visit to the sauna (hot bath or shower), 10 minutes on the rowing machine (or other light cardio), or a few light-weight sets of each exercise in your weightlifting routine.

2. Forgetting Flexibility

Having a full range of motion is important for staying active. Stretching also makes for a great post-workout recovery routine. The ISSA recommends light stretching at the end of the training session. To avoid injury and pain:

  1. Stretch each muscle that was worked.
  2. Stretch to the point of mild discomfort, not pain.
  3. Hold each stretch for about 30 seconds.
  4. Do each stretch 2-3 times.

3. Expecting Immediate Results

If only a month of training was all it took to be slim and trim for that beach vacation! Many beginners have unrealistic expectations about how long it will take to achieve fitness goals. Some spend too much time training and end up injured. Others don’t spend enough time in the gym and quit when they don’t see results. 

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I really want to take the time to emphasize number three. We have all been raised to want instant gratification. We want a three-minute solution. If we cannot see immediate results, we think we are failing. Nothing could be further from the truth. Anything worth accomplishing takes time and effort. Living a healthy lifestyle is a commitment and a process. Make no mistake about that.

If there was any advice I could give a new client, it is this: Be Patient! Don’t let pictures of beautiful people make you think you are not beautiful. Don’t look at pictures of people on steroids and think OMG I never be that big and muscular. (This is especially true with men.) Both of these self-images are wrong.

Just stay true to yourself and do the work. Every day is another day of success. No matter how small the gain. Be proud of all your accomplishments and don’t fret the failures. Stay focused, stay happy, and stay strong in your beliefs.

The Success will follow!