I want to get healthy but where do I even start?!

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Most people want to start exercising and eating healthy but are completely overwhelmed at where to even start!  So hopefully these tips I have will help to point you in the right direction.

  1. You need to write down your reason that you want to get healthy.  What’s your motivation?  Is it to fix health problems, to be around longer for your kids?  Whatever it is, it needs to be an emotional Why that you can look at when you’re feeling unmotivated to give you a kick in the butt!  Really work on this, write it down, and keep it in places that will constantly remind you why you’re embarking on this journey
  2. Write down your goals!  You know why you want to get healthy, but what exactly do you want to accomplish?  You need to make these goals measurable.  For example, “I want to look good” is NOT a good goal LOL!  We all do!  But looking good is different to everyone.  Do you have a goal to lose 30 lbs, or to lose 2 sizes, or you’re happy at your current size but just want to tone?  
  3. Next, break down your goals.  Let’s be realistic, losing 30 or 100 lbs can take a while!  If you’re sole goal is to lose 100 lbs, that seems impossible when you look at that goal that way.  So break it down into a monthly goal – I want to lose 20 lbs my first month.  And think of something that you can reward yourself with when you hit that goal!      It doesn’t have be like a trip to Bermuda, it can be something like a pedicure or a ½ hour massage.  Something that you’ll look forward to!
  4. Once you have your goals, you have to do your before measurements, weight, and pictures.  I know, I know, pictures – eeewwww!  But seriously, you’re not taking these pictures and sending them to everyone you know.  You’re taking these pictures and hiding them so only you can see them. You’re going to want them as a) motivation and b) to see your progress!
  5. You need to be aware of what you’re eating right now so you know where to make changes.  If you have a smart phone, there are a lot of calorie tracking apps that you can download.  I recommend these free websites to get started, and either of these will do!  www.sparkpeople.com or www.myfitnesspal.com .  These websites allow you to plug in your starting weight/measurements and your goal weight/measurements and the time frame in which you want to meet those goals.  Based on that information and based on your planned activity, they will give you a daily calorie target.  I know sparkpeople will even give you a meal plan everyday that you can follow if you want!  It’s SO super easy to set up, it’s free, and it’s a great way to be aware of what you’re eating.  This way, in a few weeks, if you’re not seeing any difference, you may want to refer back to your food log and pick out some foods that may not have been the best choice and find a way to replace them with healthier options.  If you’re totally confused and not even sure what a healthier option is, ask someone who eats healthy already what they would recommend!  Seriously, email me or Facebook me – I’ll help!  I love finding healthy options, I live for it
  6. Put a workout plan together.  And if your head’s spinning because you’re thinking um, hello – I don’t have time for a long workout and I’m out of shape!  That’s fine, because your workout plan could literally consist of just walking 20 minutes a day.  It could be a bike ride with your family, a 20 minute workout DVD – just SOMETHING to get your heartrate up!  Maybe you like the gym environment – ok, great!  Look into some fun group fitness classes that you can take and bring a friend for accountability, use the cardio machines, ask for help using some of the weight machines.  Maybe the gym intimidates you and you don’t want that monthly membership obligation.  No problem!  A lot of people workout at home and there are TONS of workout programs out there that really work.  Obviously, I’m a proponent of Beachbody’s programs.  Not all of the programs are crazy like P90X or Insanity; there are TONS of options from beginner to athlete.  Just ask me and we’ll discuss your goals, your time limits, concerns, etc and find the one that is right for you.  But no matter what workout you plan to do, the key is PLANNING it!
  7. So the next step is buying a planner!  You’ve got to be planning your workouts, and planning your meals.  A while ago I wrote up a guide on planning your meals and your workouts.  Check this out (http://www.jackiedampfitness.com/?p=102) to help you with this.
  8. Find someone to help you.  The biggest mistake I made when I was attempting to lose weight and start exercising was keeping it to myself.  It’s really hard to do it alone!  You have to have the support of people around you.  Things really changed for me when I found other people doing Turbo Jam and Slim in 6.  It was then that I had this virtual workout group that I knew I’d be accountable to.  If I didn’t post about my workout for a day or 2, I’d always have them asking if everything’s okay and I felt comfortable telling them if I had gotten off track, because I knew they’d pick me back up!  That’s the reason Beachbody is so awesome!  The community of support you get from your coach and others doing the programs is just unbeatable!  If you feel like you don’t know anyone that can be this support system for you, HI!  My name’s Jackie and I’m a fitness coach LOL!  Email me, facebook me – I don’t care what workout you’re doing – just let me help you!

So those are my tips to get started.  You need to be realistic with your time and make an effort to plan.  Believe me, even the most fit and healthy people you know today at some point where were you are right now.  If it were easy, we’d all be looking good!  You want this, and you will meet your goals.  Just be consistent, stick with it, and realize that yes, things will come up that will throw you off track.  The most important thing you can do is get back on track quickly and don’t look back and dwell on it!

Okay, enough of reading this – go write down your why and get started on these to do’s!  Then email me at jackiedamp@gmail.com – I want to hear about your goals and your plans!