Consistency, intensity and desire: the keys to staying fit
Just like most things in life, the hardest part of staying fit is maintaining the discipline necessary to be successful at it.
An important key to staying fit is how consistently you work out. Many people believe that in order to stay fit, they should exercise every day. You need to give your body time to rest, though; your muscles need time to repair. To strike this balance, I always tell my clients they should get moving, in some small way, every day, but to alternate high-intensity and low-intensity workouts. One way to give the body rest, but still exercise each day, is to alternate different kinds of exercise. Switching a high-intensity cardio workout, like running, with a low-stress strengthening workout, like yoga, ensures a well-balanced routine that allows you to exercise every day and allows the body time to rest.
Working out consistently is not enough; it is also important that you focus with laser-like intensity on whatever you’re trying to accomplish with a particular exercise. Yoga, for example, allows those who practice it to be freer from injury because it is a low-impact form of exercise that works a variety of muscle groups. Running, alternatively, can give someone excellent muscle structure and build up endurance. (An important note: I’ve seen many runners neglect strength training, with dire effects. To continue running effectively and avoid tearing up your body, you must build up your muscles.) The point is, whatever you’re doing, be mindful of why you are doing it, and focus.
I always tell my clients they should get moving, in some small way, every day, but to alternate high intensity and low-intensity workouts.
The last and probably most important key to maintaining a certain level of physical fitness is your desire to stay fit. Not letting life get in the way of taking care of yourself is one of the biggest challenges to staying fit. If you really want to get and stay fit, you must make the commitment to do it. It doesn’t require a lot of time; just 30 minutes can make an important difference if that’s all you can spare.
When working towards a fitness goal, that’s all it takes: just get moving every day, keep up the intensity of your workouts (whether they’re high-intensity or not) and don’t lose your will to reach your goal. These three things are key to getting you to the level of fitness you are striving for. If you make them each a part of your fitness routine, your fitness goals will be more easily achievable.
Written by Rhonda Murphy, as told to Madeline Shannon
As a certified member of AFAA (Aerobics and Fitness Association of America), Rhonda Murphy is part of the world’s largest fitness education association.
With over 25 years of experience, Rhonda has become one of the most sought after fitness consultants in Central California. She is the owner of Rhonda's Fitness Center and hosts “Workout Wednesdays” on ABC 30. As a personal trainer, she motivates and gives inspiration to anyone who wants to gain a higher level of health and fitness.
For more information, visit rhofit.com or call (559) 431-3600.