Getting Started in Fitness

Updated: Jan 18



Do you remember Bally Total Fitness? Please don’t make me feel too old and say yes! I want to say I’ve worked out since Bally’s but the truth is… that would be a lie.

When I was about 18 years old my parents got me a year-long membership to Bally’s. Ask me how many times I went. Like five. I know, “How could you let your parents down like that?!” – Honestly, ‘til this day it baffles me.


The five times that I did go, though, I can tell you my exact workout session. First, I would count the amount of people in the room as I walked in. Then, I would find a cardio machine (any cardio machine) where the least amount of people were working out.


I would do cardio on it for about 30 minutes and then I would quickly grab my water bottle and leave as if that was the best work-out ever… and I had an appointment waiting!


How many of you just nervously laughed because you’ve done the same thing?


Insecurity.  I am 100% convinced that the main reason why people don’t work out is because of their insecurity about knowing how to do it.  Especially when it comes to actually going to a gym, where in fact, there are guys that look like their life depends on their gains. (Honestly, some cute to look at and some… a little scary.)


We worry about not knowing how a machine works, not knowing the proper form of the exercise, not knowing if we look good in our workout clothes. Name the insecure thought, I’ve had it.


Years later I actually lived in an apartment community that had its own gym and even then, my workouts would be the same. Not once did I think that I needed to lift weights… I actually had no goal. I just thought if I run on the treadmill long enough, I’ll start looking like an athlete. Yea, I’m cute.


It took a difficult season in life for me to start taking fitness seriously. At the time I was recently separated and I had a lot (and I mean a lot) of energy and emotions to burn. So I started at home. You guessed it, I took to YouTube… and I’m not ashamed. I started with yoga and as I acquired knowledge I moved on to work outs with weights.


I remember going to Walmart and getting 2lb, 3lb and 5lb weights. As I write this, post-quarantine, I can’t believe I actually left those beautiful 15lb and 20lb weights on the rack for other workout maniacs to grab before me! Obviously I had no idea that a year later they would be a hot commodity.


Anyway, today I have goals. I am nowhere near where I want to be in fitness but you know what? I’m closer. I feel healthy. I feel strong. I get more done in life because I have more energy. I sleep better and I feel more confident about my own body.


So here are my main tips so you can get started in your fitness journey. They aren’t about supplements or diets. They aren’t about technique or how-to’s. These were just my game-changers and if you’re committed, they work.


Make a plan


Basically, there are work-out days and there are rest-days. The most important thing about them is that you set them. If you wake up in the morning and you have to decide if you’ll workout or rest that day then you’re already losing.


You’ve got to have a plan in order to stay consistent and in order to give different muscle groups a chance to rest and recuperate. Below is my current schedule. Here is a general idea of how I group my different muscles.


I’ve been told recently that you want to switch your schedule up because your muscles have memory and you’ll get a better result if they don’t know what’s coming to them.  

  • Day 1: quads and glutes

  • Day 2: back, bicep and abs

  • Day 3: rest

  • Day 4: shoulders and calves

  • Day 5: hams and glutes

  • Day 6: chest, triceps and abs

  • Day 7: rest

Ask a friend for help


Seriously though, everything is better in community. I do get a lot of things from YouTube but the majority of the basics when I started, I got from a friend. Once I had worked out at home for a while, I felt like I was ready to transition into the gym. I got a membership and I asked a friend for help. Obviously, it was somebody that already had results and knew what he was doing.


Walking into a gym with somebody was a lot less awkward than walking in by yourself and finding the nearest cardio machine. He took me to the free weights section where the pro’s workout. (I’m a kid sometimes, ya’ll!)


He taught me how to warm up and how to have the correct form. He taught me how to structure a workout for a specific muscle group… and he taught me that I was giving up too soon instead of going for 2 extra reps when it started hurting.

His knowledge and time meant the world! Fitness is a journey and you’re going to want to have people that will guide you and cheer you on along the way. Enjoy the journey!


Eat


Here’s another concept that restructured my perspective on fitness. Results are 20% workout and 70% nutrition and 10% supplements. Let me be clear though… I am not in any sort of direct sales in the fitness industry. If you ask me, I will guide you to the nearest Vitamin Shoppe or GNC.


Not that I haven’t already tried the leading brands in MLM and loved them. What I’ve learned is that you’ve got to eat well. Whether that’s going vegan, or gluten-free is really up to you and your medical professional.


I encourage you to include a lot of greens in your diet. Choose water instead of sodas. Choose baked instead of friend. Choose natural sweets instead of high sugar processed desserts.


As you make these small choices consistently, you will see how you will actually prefer them over the not so healthy choices! Believe me, there are things that I say no to very easily now that I would have struggled declining before.


Whatever you do though, don’t stop eating altogether. Love your body! Food is fuel. I eat… a lot. But I’m selective and I try to make healthy choices.


Now, don’t judge me the next time I post a Colombian triple stack cheeseburger on my IG feed… because believe me, I will eat it! But I won’t eat it every day. My consistency in healthy choices has made me enjoy simple, home-made meals and I’m proud of me for it.


When I started with fitness, I failed at consistency a handful of times. I want to encourage you because I know that there is a high probability that you have already attempted working out in the past only to not be consistent and therefore ending up discouraged.


Keep trying! Give it another shot. This time around may be the time that you finally follow through.


In order to help you, I have created a Habit Maker! It is basically the tool I use every time that I want to start a new healthy habit. You can get a copy for free in your inbox by subscribing to this blog. All the instructions are there to get you started!


When you do start and finish a round of the Habit Maker… let me know! DM me, inbox me or just post a pic of your progress and hashtag #CreateALifeYouLove. I would love to cheer you on!


Remember to create a life you love… a life by YOU!