Many people ask me how to quickly and easily get fit. While I know they are hoping for a simple answer, the reality is that getting and staying fit is a lifestyle, not a quick fix. So what do fit people do in their “healthy lifestyle”? Take a peek with the following 7 Habits of Highly Fit People…
Fit Habit #1: They Don’t Buy Junk
Fit people know that if they keep junk food in the house they will eat it sooner or later. So they don’t buy any. I am guilty of that! So my discipline is to consume a bit of junk on the weekend. Even buying junk food for your kids or spouse is not advised since 1) you’ll likely eat some of it eventually, and 2) your loved ones shouldn’t be eating that junk either. It’s called junk for a reason.
Rid your home of chips, cookies, candy, baked goods, pre-packaged snacks and anything else that belongs in a vending machine. Replace the above with fresh fruit, veggies, nuts and other healthy whole foods snacks. Make it a treat to have "junk" so that you have to go out of your way to get it. Having it easily available is dangerous as people tend to eat out of boredom or reach for it when hungry.
Fit Habit #2: They Have Priorities
Fit people make exercise a priority. Along with keeping a job, paying the bills and going to the doctor, exercise is an important part of their lives. What I’ve found is that fit people put exercise before leisure time. Sure, fit people enjoy leisure, but it is scheduled around their workout time.
Treat exercise time with the same importance that you would a business meeting or trip to the dentist. Set time for yourself with minimal interruption. You know your schedule best so plan it wherever works best for you!
Fit Habit #3: They Stop When Full
Fit people stop eating when they feel full. Sound simple? It is, but how many times have you stuffed yourself simply to clear your plate? Or how many times have you eaten another piece of cake despite being stuffed?
The next time you feel full, take it as a sign to stop eating. Yes, even if your plate isn’t empty. Take your time when you eat. Chew your food until it becomes a liquid form like applesauce. It takes our brain about 20 minutes to tell our stomach if it's actually full. A saying I once heard is chew your water and drink your food. Slow down!
Fit Habit #4: They Push Themselves
Not only do fit people make time to go to the gym, they challenge themselves during each workout. While it is easy to simply go through the motions while exercising, you’re cheating your body out of great results when you don’t push yourself. Exercise should make you sweat, make your muscles burn, and leave you with a feeling of accomplishment.
Find ways to make each workout more challenging. For competitive people, the best way to push yourself is to exercise with a friend of similar strength. Another great way to challenge yourself is to set small attainable goals. These goals could be to push heavier weight, to sprint longer, or to do cardio at a higher intensity setting. By pushing yourself you can see what you are truly capable of! Lastly, the harder you workout the more calories you will burn!
Fit Habit #5: They Don’t Eat and Watch
Fit people know that eating in front of the T.V. is mindless eating. When your attention is on your entertainment and not on your food, then you’ll be less tuned in to what and how much ends up in your mouth. Eating in front of the T.V. is also very habit forming. Ever notice how you crave munchies just as a reflex of sitting in front of the T.V.?
Eat before or after your entertainment and pay attention to what and how much goes into your mouth. Track your calories with myfitnesspal and be completely honest with all of the calories you consume and when. It can open your eyes to what unnecessary calories you might be taking in.
Fit Habit #6: They Drink Water
Fit people drink lots of water. And not just in addition to other beverages, but instead of them. Water is their main drink, while other drinks are occasional treats. Calorie-filled drinks are one of the quickest ways to consume excess calories which quickly turn into fat.
Consider water your beverage of choice. Drink plenty of it each day and drink other beverages only a few times each week. Aim to consuming about half your bodyweight in ounces of water daily as a good rule of thumb.
Fit Habit #7: They Are Supported
Fit people don’t leave their motivation to chance. They know that if their personal trainer, boot camp instructor or workout partner is waiting for them, then they are less likely to skip a workout. It is so easy to hit snooze or to talk yourself out of the gym as soon as your behind hits the couch after work. Fit people take the option of skipping out of the equation.
I hope that these habits have inspired you to make a change for the fitter in your own life. If you already do some of these habits then congratulations – you are on your way to a better body. Make an effort to incorporate the rest of the habits to take your results to the next level.
If none, or very few, of these habits describe your lifestyle, then I’ve got good news – you now have 7 effective new habits to start that will get you some awesome results. Don’t try to tackle all 7 at once – pick one or two to add each week and gradually work up to all 7.
As always, you are welcome to call or email me with questions or to get started on your own customized fitness plan.