Beginning your fitness journey there’s a lot to learn. Chances are, you’ve read a lot gym reviews, pinned loads of exercise routine ideas, found a few Instagram pros to follow for inspo, and you’re feeling ready to hop on the train to health and happiness.
Even with all these resources at our fingertips, more often than not, we see the same missteps from newbies over and over. Here are 5 easy to avoid mistakes that could derail your train before you make it out of the station.
Too much too soon
You’re excited. This time you’re committed. You want to get this body transforming and you’re not going to let anything stop you. So you’ve scheduled gym hours 6 days this week, a class on sunday, morning runs, evening yoga and a standing desk at work. You think as long as you keep your momentum going you #cantstopwontstop. While your enthusiasm will keep you going at first, when it starts to fade and you’ve loaded all this on your plate, odds are you’ll drop the whole damn thing if you don’t take yourself out with an injury first. Instead of trying to change your entire life routine overnight, establish a simple routine into your current situation. Once you’ve created that solid foundation you will find what works for you and can add from there.
Too much time at the gym
This one may seem counterintuitive. Honestly though, unless you’re training for a competition, spending hours at the gym is probably unnecessary. Your time is just as valuable now as it was before you decided to get fit. Use it wisely. Go into your workouts with a plan. Get in. Do Work. Get out.
Not adjusting diet
There’s a strong connection between diet and exercise when it comes to transforming your body. You really can’t achieve consistent results without both pieces of the puzzle. A lot of times, beginners will count how many calories they burned in this morning’s workout and use it as a pizza savings account. You’re going to have a tough time if you continue to look at food this way. You’re already going through the trouble of doing the work in the gym, don’t set yourself back by not nourishing yourself properly. I’m a big believer in balance and simplicity. I’m not saying kiss pizza goodbye forever, but adopt an 80/20 rule. Aim to eat sensibly 80% of the time so you can treat yourself when there’s something too good to pass up.
This is a biggie. If you’re doing an exercise without proper technique, not only are you going to miss out on the full potential gain from that exercise, but you’ll also be risking injury. If you don’t plan to work with a trainer on a regular basis, I highly recommend having one go through the correct form of exercises you’re planning to use. Save yourself the wasted energy and risk by making sure you’re doing right from the beginning.
Not tracking progress
Arguably the biggest mistake you can make is not tracking your journey. You’ll pay for this mistake on the days you’re feeling frustrated, staring in the mirror not seeing any difference and hitting snooze on your alarm to get to the gym before work. Tracking your workouts, your diet and your progress will help pinpoint what’s working in your routine and what isn’t so you can make changes. It’ll help keep you motivated and serve as inspiration on the times you’re really not feeling it. So log your reps, track your weight and measurements and Take Those Selfies! Take pride in all the hard work you’ve put in and keep at it.