Where to start your journey
Due to some recent conversations I’ve had with people just starting out on this journey as well as some new members, I’ve been thinking about how different types of people call for different starting points.
I realized that many of you probably believe that there is One Right Way To Train.
This couldn’t be further from the truth. The best program in the world is the one that you are going to stick with, the program that you are going to understand how to implement, how to adapt and modify, and know why you are doing the things you are doing with the program.
Before I move on, I’d like to mention one thing about programs.
By definition, a training program means “a set of underlying principles that apply to each and every one of us that must be included in what we do in order to shape up”. A program must be dynamic by nature, meaning, we must understand how/when to apply and/or modify each variable, personally, to meet our individual goals as they change. Individual is a very key word.
Some of you at this point are probably thinking, “What are the principles?”
In an ideal world, and this is much of what you see me discuss here in this forum, the list would look something like this:
1. Control of energy (calorie) balance to match your goals, have them be weight loss or gain.
2. Determining what foods should comprise this energy intake to match your goals.
3. The inclusion of resistance training. This subject is vast and there are many underlying principles that should be adhered to here, but that’s for another article.
4. The inclusion of cardiovascular exercise. It provides positive benefits relative to cardiovascular health.
5. Skill-related training/practice for those who are involved in sports.
6. Stretching/flexibility/soft tissue work to “complete the package” of owning a healthy body.
7. Last but certainly not least, the exercise of the mind. A healthy mind certainly comes before a healthy body, in my opinion.
You can add more to the list, but if someone includes each of these variables, it’s a surefire way to meet their fitness/health/physique goals.
This is NOT where someone HAS to start. Actually, I’d never expect someone living the “couch potato” lifestyle at the moment, to up and start doing each of these things tomorrow. The brain doesn’t work like that. Changing habits is a difficult and time-consuming procedure.
This journey, no matter where you start, is a long and never-ending process. Find your own, personal starting point. From it, work consistently. Expect to master each step as you take it. Do not expect to become a master of fitness and nutrition overnight.
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