If you’re a beginner in the world of fitness and you’ve ever witnessed the workout of some gym rat or fitness guru, it might have left you feeling a bit inadequate. However, what they understand about working out is this: it’s important to find a means of staying fit that doesn’t feel like a chore. Perhaps you’re a person who’s stuck in an exercise rut and you are looking for a new reason to love your workout again. Finding an activity that is a natural extension of who you are can help make your workout more effective and fun and get you well on your way to achieving your fitness goals.

To discover a fitness routine that is fun and effective and that works for you, try incorporating the following plan that is backed by science and recommended by experts.

Picking an Activity

Picking an exercise that is fun for you is as simple as finding an activity that you are compatible with. For instance, maybe you enjoyed playing football or volleyball as a kid and just simply got away from it as you became older.

Well, now’s the time to reconnect with your passion and incorporate it into your life as part of your fitness goals. You might even consider forming a recreational sports team, such as a softball team, comprised of your close friends and family, so your exercise feels more like good family fun as opposed to a workout. After all, the adage says that families that play together stay together!

Just be sure the activity you select is one that incorporates both cardio as well as strength training, or simply select a few different activities that can be performed on alternate days of the week for a well-rounded fitness routine.

In fact, experts recommend for a five day a week workout, two days should be devoted to cardio, while the other three days should be devoted to strength training, which helps build muscle and burns more fat, and devote the other two days to recovery.

For a four day a week workout, simply incorporate two days of cardio, two days of strength training, and devote the other three days to recovery.

There is no exact formula for getting fit. In fact, experts state that the number of days per week that you workout simply depends on how active you are, so select the number of days per week that work best for you and that yield the results you want.

You should also be sure that the activity you select actually gets your heart rate up enough to be effective. Additionally, you have to set enough time for warm-ups and for changing into safe workout clothes, as well as any workout prep that needs to be done for certain activities (like weightlifting or kickboxing), such as using wrist wraps or knee wraps.

Setting a Time

In the past, it was always believed that your workout should be performed in the morning to be most effective; however, this just isn’t feasible for everyone. Therefore, you should consider selecting a time of day that works best for you.

In fact, according to new research, the hour of the day you can workout can impact how you feel about working out, which can help make your workout fun and in turn, makes it easier to form an exercise habit. Additionally, there is no scientific evidence to support that calories are burned more efficiently in the morning than in the late afternoon or evening.

Research further concludes that your body has its own biological rhythm, which determines whether you’re a morning person or a night person and that there’s really nothing you can do to alter it.

So when engaging in your exercise routine, determine the time of day you feel at your peak, and then for it!

Working Your Diet In

Healthy eating often conjures images of cardboard textured, pungent or bland-tasting foods that are unsatisfying and unfulfilling; however, there are a variety of good-for-you foods that actually taste good and that leave you feeling full.

In fact, many good-for-you foods contain fiber, which helps you feel full quicker and longer, so you eat less. It also helps clean you out, which aids with weight loss and helps you maintain a healthy weight. It also contains a host of health benefits, including helps prevent heart disease, helps lower glucose levels, and helps lower blood cholesterol.

Some examples of fiber-rich foods include whole vegetables and legumes, whole fruits, and whole grains, such as oatmeal, brown rice, whole wheat bread, and whole grain pasta.

Good-for-you foods are also packed full of nutrients, including vitamins, minerals, proteins, and essential fats, that provide your body with the energy it needs to live and grow and improve overall health. Therefore, they are essential to any fitness plan.

The key to incorporating good-for-you foods into your diet is to try different foods until you find the ones you like, which will assist you in making dedicated choices. Once you have found some good-for-you foods that you like and can actually see yourself eating, slowly begin incorporating them into your daily diet.

You can also simply add them to many of the foods you already eat to help up the nutrient content and make them healthier, so your foods actually work for you and not against you. For instance, fresh fruit, vegetables, and herbs add tasty natural flavoring to your food, which can help limit your salt and sugar intake, while also increasing your fiber intake.

So the next time you’re at the grocery store, simply view the aisles of good-for-you foods as a world of opportunities to help to improve your overall health. Besides, you take risks on everything else in life, why not take a risk by trying a variety of healthy foods that have been proven to work for you.

Overall, by selecting a workout that you like, it helps make getting fit seem effortless and goes a long way towards helping you feel good as you seemingly painlessly achieve your goals. It will also help you feel good knowing you are making smart choices that are actually working for you. Keep trying new things until you find an activity that you enjoy and that gives you a reason to love your workout!


SELF | How Often Should You Work Out? The Perfect Weekly Workout Routine

WebMD | What’s the Best Time to Exercise?

HCG Triumph Diet | Why “A One Size Fits All” Approach To Exercise May Be Hampering You

Harvard School of Public Health | Fiber