How to start working out?

Working out has one of the most calming and invigorating effects on your mind and body, so why not start working out at least three times a week?

Let me tell you my story, on how i started my workout regimen, changed my eating habits, lost weight and achieved a balance, and what helped me in the process.

Get off your butt!

This really is the secret. To start working out, all you have to do is get off your couch and move. It doesn’t matter what you do or where you do it. Don’t have a gym membership? Try running around your neighborhood, or workout at home. This is what I do, I run in a park nearby, and also train at home. I got several sets of workout DVD programs, like Insanity, P90X, P90X3, and Focus T25. Up until now i have only completed Insanity, and tried several workouts from Focus T25, and P90X3.

If you dont have the time to start a program (even though Focus T25 and P90X3 are only 30 minutes a day, five days a week), you can easily do 10-15 minute workouts that you can find on YouTube. Or you can start by walking a few miles a day, and upping your mileage constantly until you start a running regimen, or taking your bike to work instead of your car.

Given the variety of things you can do, there are really no more excuses!

I started seeing results from the first week of activity, and after almost four months of 3-5 workouts a week I have lost 12 pounds, several inches off my waist, toned my arms, and feel better overall. I am now at my goal weight, eating a balanced diet, and looking forward to maintaining this lifestyle change for as long as possible.

Change your eating habits!

Before embarking on my fitness journey, I had some pretty bad eating habits. I used to eat refined carbs (like white bread, french fries, sugar and such), a lot of fast food, little to no vegetables and legumes. My meals were not balanced, and their timing was all over the place.

Upon discovering Shaun T’s Insanity Program, i came across the nutrition guide it came with. This was one of the first clean eating documents I read, and it taught me a lot about food, and how to best fuel my body.

Now, Insanity is a very intense cardio conditioning program. When doing Insanity you need to fuel your body properly, as to not go into starvation mode. I ate a lot of calories, that came from whole foods mostly. Occasionally, I’d have a cheat day with some pizza or ice cream.

Foods I gave up: bread, potatoes, rice, pasta, sugar, fast food, sweets.

Foods I started eating: vegetables (all sorts of them, mostly raw or steamed), fish, lean meats, whole grains, protein shakes, non dairy milk such as almond, nut butters. I stopped frying foods, and opted for steaming, grilling, and baking most of my meals.

I stopped drinking soda, and switched to tons of water, and green tea.

Tools that helped me achieve my goals

I used MyFitnessPal to track calories in.

I purchase a fitness tracker – namely Garmin’s Vivofit – with the heart rate monitor to count calories out and overall activity levels.

I use RunKeeper to track runs, bike rides, and walks. All three tools are synced so that I am given a complete picture about my fitness.

One of the most informative websites on fitness and clean eating is FitSugar.

Also, Pinterest is of great help when you need motivation. MyFitnessPal community can help answer all questions you might have.

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