There will come a time in your life, where you’ll likely end up in a bit of a rut, and you’ll probably be struck with signs that you need to make a change. To get into shape.
Whether it’s a small tweak in a singular aspect of your life, or a completely 360 degree U-turn, something’s just got to change.
You’ll be able to spot these signs quickly.
I know, because it’s happened to me. I was in that “out of shape” rut, living life without a care for my health.
So, from my experiences to yours, here are 4 signs you need to get in shape:
1) Feeling tired most of the time
This is a regular problem you encounter from people that are out of shape. Little things you do (and don’t do) exhaust you physically and mentally, which makes getting through your day a chore.
You most likely have a bad diet, haven’t worked out in weeks or months or just not getting a good night’s sleep. My guess is all three but being out of shape will triumph them all.
Feeling tired means we aren’t able to function to our full potential and enjoy all the things life has to offer. We are constantly struggling for energy to get through the day.
The Solution: Start small. Begin exercising lightly three days a week for as little as 20 minutes at a time. A mix of weight training, bodyweight exercises and cardiovascular workouts such as running/walking or cycling will do your energy levels wonders. Cardio being the most important for weight loss.
Once you get to a comfortable level, increase your exercise intensity and regularity to further your health and shape. Regular exercise boosts strength and endurance, helps make your cardiovascular system run more efficiently, and delivers oxygen and nutrients to your tissues. Not to mention the many long-term health benefits.
2) Walking up the stairs and feeling out of breath
Infrequent exercisers are well aware of this. It is not a good feeling when you feel exhausted from walking up a few short steps. You are out of shape! Most likely you lack stamina, cardio and endurance. Being able to walk up the stairs should be a basic everyday requirement to function in life.
The Solution: This may seem somewhat counter intuitive, but to make your regular stair climb easier, you should work by climbing more flights than you do in your regular climb. Cardio workouts do make the activities of our daily lives easier. Any kind of consistent activity like running, walking, sprints, High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), swimming, jump rope, stair master, cycling or just everyday chores will do. Find something active that makes you feel good about yourself, and that you enjoy enough to keep doing. Do that. Soon you will find out that you can run up the stairs without losing your breath.
3) Your weight is steadily rising
You’ve started noticing your waist circumference is getting bigger and it’s harder to fit into your clothes. Often it’s the result of excessive abdominal fat. It seems the scale is slowly increasing every time you step on it. If you’ve noticed your weight creeping up over time and you do make an effort to eat healthy, the reason is likely your activity level.
The Solution: Regular physical activity. Whether that being walking for 15 minutes daily, going to the gym 2-5 times a week or just doing home workouts. This will ensure that you maintain lean muscle mass while boosting metabolism after a workout session. With steady physical activity, your body fat will start melting away. Healthy foods give you metabolism and give the body energy to burn.
4) You have a sedentary lifestyle
Here’s a little test for you: Do you eat out at fast food restaurants more than 3 times a week? Do you like to watch a lot of sports teams instead of playing a sport? Do you spend more than two hours a day on the computer or video games?
Sound like you? If you answered yes to one or all of these questions, then it’s more than likely, you are out of shape.
The Solution: Get rid of the unhealthy fast food routine. They contain high sodium, empty calories, lots of trans-fats and many more health risks. Substitute with lean protein (chicken, beef, eggs, etc), complex carbohydrates (low fat yogurt, whole grain breads and pastas, fruits and vegetables, etc), and healthy fats (peanut butter, walnuts, fatty fish, soymilk, etc).
Start playing sports instead of watching it all the time. Go outside and toss a ball or join a sports league where they play each week. This will ensure you get your endurance and cardio and are staying active.
Cut back the computer time and video games. Sure it’s a fun way to blow off steam and stress but it’s not going to get you into the shape you want.
Your goal is to get in the habit of exercising each week doing cardio, strength training and playing sports that you enjoy. You will slowly start seeing results each week if you keep at it with motivation to meet your goals.
Do you see one of these signs in your life?
Maybe you still haven’t… it doesn’t matter.
What matters is you’re aware of these signs now and before they start creeping up on you, you start getting into shape.
For your health;
To live longer. And better.
For your family;
To support them.
These aren’t the only signs. There are more. These are the signs I had that I was out of shape.
Getting in shape requires commitment to a healthy diet and exercise program. Working out might actually make juggling your work and personal life easier.
The key to getting into shape is to start slow at first and build up gradually.
This will not happen overnight.
I’m not saying it will be easy, I’m saying it WILL be worth it!
By following a few of these tips and incorporating a few of your own, you WILL see results of your body!
So take ACTION today, listen to your body and let your journey begin!
Share in the comments some other signs that I might have missed.
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