Every new year since I’ve been in the fitness industry, now over 30 years, the New Year’s resolutions roll around and about this time of January, most of the resolutions have either been broken or forgotten. What is lost in the hoopla and excitement of what has created taglines like “New Year, New You!” and the like is that you can’t hype the beginning of exercise. It almost never works.
When people try to work others up to start an exercise routine or hype the benefits to get people to dive headfirst into a change, they are actually performing a disservice to those who desperately need to get into a regular exercise routine. What is lost in all the hype is the fact that exercise creates its own energy.
When you start a new exercise routine VERY slowly and methodically, adding time or effort at a snail’s pace, you are winning every day and you build momentum that creates an energy all its own. It is that very energy that is what you need in order to maintain a new routine that can last for the rest of your life. The people who mean well and are trying to let everyone know about this energy actually do a good job of explaining that when you are on a regular exercise routine, you gain benefits that are amazing and add energy to your life. What they don’t tell you is that if you start off on your new routine very quickly, you will face a steep uphill climb that no amount of energy benefits can easily overcome.
So, the million dollar question that this raises, how can this be done? How can I get the benefits of a regular exercise routine without having to climb Mt. Everest? The answer sounds too good to be true. It is to start with an exercise routine of 1 minute a day. No matter what exercise you choose, start with only 1 minute a day. If it is walking, start with 1 minute of walking a day. If you choose stair climbing, 1 minute a day. If you start on an elliptical, start with 1 minute a day.
What will this accomplish? Almost nothing for your cardiovascular system but it will build a momentum and an energy that gets the snowball rolling down a hill. It is also easy to do 7 days a week. The next week build to 2 minutes each day. Week 3, exercise 3 minutes a day. This is how in a little over 1 year, in addition to getting a handle on my eating, I was able to lose 100 lbs. It was very easy and I built and built to where I was exercising 30 minutes a day. I never went over 30 minutes and the weight came off and it was extremely easy to do.
Always consult your doctor before beginning an exercise program but I’m sure he will agree that starting off very slowly and building and building to a regular workout of 30 minutes a day will be the easiest on your system and the easiest way to maintain your new fitness routine.