How to Choose a Fitness Program

What do you do for physical activity?

For one girl, the activity of choice may be running. Another may be a gym princess. Right now, I’m on a Pilates kick. I want to be fit and faithful for Kingdom work.

You don’t have to do high impact activity to get fit. Walking, biking or swimming are simple ways to improve health. Whatever you choose to do for fitness, plan ahead to make time for it.

Choosing Your Fitness Program

First of all, you should do an honest assessment about what you’re capable of doing. Although I have a background in health, and have done a lot of health coaching, I am not a doctor. So excuse me while I sound like an infomercial: “Please get a doctor’s approval before starting a fitness program.” (Although most do not, it is wise practice.)

Choose a fitness program based on your interests, accessibility, abilities, current fitness level and underlying conditions (if any).

Examples

If you cannot walk for 5 minutes without getting out of breath, why start a running program? Walk instead, and build up your endurance. Also, if you have a bad back, instead of a traditional bike, use a recumbent bike because it’s less strain on the back and neck. Want to start a gym program but you can never make it there or cannot afford the dues? Choose something else.

Mind What You Buy Into

Never ever buy into the Biggest Loser syndrome when choosing your fitness program. Those participants are evaluated¬†by a doctor, and there are always health professionals on hand during show tapings if something goes wrong. Also, many of the Biggest Loser philosophies are not realistic for the everyday fitness seeker. It’s unrealistic to ask a very heavy person to do all the same moves and positions a lighter weight person can do. Think about it. Your fitness program should be doable.

Again, high impact does not mean better exercise. Pilates isn’t high impact, yet it offers wonderful health benefits.

While we’re at it, don’t buy into get fit quick schemes. They’re schemes. Period. Practice patience. Take your time and build up to see lasting results.

A Few Reminders

  • Do something you’ll stick with by making it part of your lifestyle
  • Do something you’ll enjoy (that makes sticking with it easier)
  • Set a work-out schedule with included rest days
  • Include activity for strengthening, flexibility and cardio
  • Find creative ways to stay motivated
  • Cute work-out gear doesn’t hurt (*smile)

Let’s be fit AND faithful!