Get Started Getting Healthy
The most important wealth is health and most people come to realise that when it's too late. But it is never too late to get started on improving your health. Here's how to get started.
Taking positive steps towards improving your health begin with two simple steps - exercise and nutrition.
What you put into your body helps determine what you get out of it.
In general terms, the more ’movement’ your body receives the stronger it will become. If you also provide it with the right fuel your energy levels will soar.
For many people today’s life is a largely sedentary one. Too few pursue even a leisurely walk every day let alone any vigorous exercise.
They graze on processed and refined foods that give them quick rushes of energy only to feel ’flatter’ a short time later. This triggers the cravings for another quick sugar hit which only continues the cycle.
It’s time to break the cycle by making some immediate changes which will kickstart your journey to better health.
Everyone reading this will have a different starting point and goal when it comes to this program. Some will want to lose weight, others may want to gain muscle, tone up or just feel better.
Whatever your goals, this program will get you on the way and you’ll see and feel the difference in the first 30 days.
From the outset you need to know that what is proposed might sound simple but it can prove to be very difficult.
That’s because you will be trying to break bad habits while establishing new, positive habits. It’s likely your body and mind will resist those changes initially, but in a short time your body will thrive on the changes you have made.
Here are the exercise basics for your first four weeks.
Some vigorous physical activity is important every day as well as making basic healthy choices when available.
The healthy choices are as simple as a daily walk, choosing stairs instead of a lift, stretching your joints and muscles. Even if you are stuck in an office or pouring over a computer screen, there are dozens of opportunities to move and stretch. Take every single one of them. If you find yourself forgetting, set a reminder on your phone to make the most of five minutes every hour.
Trust me, your work productivity will increase as a result.
The vigorous activity will be in the form of some basic body weight exercises. These will help you build strength, aerobic capacity and flexibility.
The initial goal is simple. Do five simple exercises six days per week for four weeks. I suggest doing these in the morning as soon as you wake up.
Here are the exercises.
- Set your feet shoulder-width apart, toes slightly turned out. ...
- Slowly bend at the knees and drop your hips to lower your body. ...
- At the bottom of the exercise pause for a moment and strongly push back up to the starting position, mirroring the descent.
- Repeat for desired number of reps.
- Lie face down on the floor with hands slightly wider than shoulder width.
- Push down on the floor with the hands and raise the body up by extending the arms.
- Lower the body back down to the floor by bending at the arms and repeat.
Maintain a straight body throughout the exercise.
- Lower to squat position with hands on the floor, slightly wider than shoulder width.
- Kick feet back to the starting push-up position.
- Immediately return feet to the squat position.
- Jump up as high as possible from the squat, and drop back down to the starting position.
- Repeat the exercise, keeping movements fluid, controlled and as fast as possible.
- Being face down resting your weight on your forearms and toes and pull your abs in tight.
- Maintain a hold where your body is in a straight line from shoulders to heels for as long as possible.
Keep a straight back and don't allow your hips to sag throughout the exercise hold.
One rep of a plank is a static hold for 5 seconds so day one is a total of 1:40 and day two is 1.45 and so on.
- Lie on your back with hands by your side, knees bent and feet flat on the floor (under the knees)
- Press your feet into the floor as you tighten your butt and abs, and lift your hips up to create a straight line from knees to shoulders
- Hold the position in good form (tense the core, trying to pull your bell button back toward the spine) for 5 seconds (you can extend this time as desired)
- Lower yourself back down to the floor
Aim to do a minimum of 20 reps of each exercise on day one.
If you can do more than this on day one then begin at the higher level but for the first four weeks do not exceed 50 reps per exercise per day
For those struggling with the suggested minimum, do what you can on day one to work out your starting point and increase reps daily.
Every day you must do more of each exercise than you did the previous day (even if it is only one rep more).
e.g Day 1 - 20 reps, Day 2 - 21 reps, Day 3 - 23 reps and so on.
Begin with as many continuous reps of the first exercise as possible before moving on to the next one. Do the same number of reps with that exercise and then move on to the next one and so forth.
It is normal for individuals to be stronger in some areas than others but you must match the reps of your previous exercise before moving on to the next. That is if you start with 10 pushups then you must do 10 reps of the other exercises to compete a cycle.
Once you have completed the initial reps of each exercise (a cycle), begin again doing as many continuous reps as possible until you have achieved your daily rep goal.
Transition between exercises (and cycles) immediately until you have achieved your target.
Commence each day with a different starting exercise until (after 5 days) you have begun your workout with them all (a rotation). Then begin a new rotation.