You are not alone; many people have desire, determination, and persistent work but fail to achieve their goals. If this sounds familiar, the next natural step is to seek out a knowledgeable personal trainer with demonstrated experience.
But if you're not ready to take that step, or if you'd prefer to go it alone, you can.
Top 10 Fitness Tips And Tricks
1. Make sure you're eating healthy
Almost any personal trainer will tell you that regardless of your training objectives, proper diet is the foundation. Food is what fuels your body to achieve your goals, and if you don't get enough nourishment from excellent foods, you'll likely plateau. Maintain a healthy diet that includes fruits and vegetables, complex carbs, complete proteins, and healthy fats such as fish oils and flaxseeds.
2. Prepare ahead
According to Micah LaCerte, a personal trainer and fitness competition world champion, preparing meals ahead of time provides you the best chance of meeting your dietary goals. This way, he claims, you won't feel compelled to eat bad foods or miss meals.
3. Eat more clean food
Do you only eat three meals a day? It's not a good idea. “Half of the clients I work with aren't losing weight because they don't eat enough,” says Mike Duffy, an experienced personal trainer. Duffy urges his clients to “eat five times a day, about every three hours, to increase their metabolism,” which includes two mini-meals in between three main meals. He advocates “eating less as the day goes on” as activity levels decrease throughout the day.
4. Control your portion sizes
Because you'll be eating more frequently, paying attention to portion size is critical. “Make sure chicken breasts (and) meats are no larger than your palm, and pastas are no larger than your fists,” advises Jay Cardiello, a celebrity and professional athlete personal trainer. He also recommends using "smaller bowls, plates, and cups" because research shows that people "feed themselves 20-40% more food while using larger plates." Here's how to figure out how much food you'll need.
5. Eat with purpose
Everything you eat should be high in nutritional value. “You want the greatest nutritional bang for your buck,” says strength coach and trainer Dan Trink, C.S.C.S. “Everything you consume should have a nutritious purpose in your body, fuel your workouts, and (be) aimed at enhancing your physique.”
6. Understand the basics of building muscle
Any personal trainer will tell you that there are certain muscle-building fundamentals. First, up your calorie and complete protein consumption to ensure your body has adequate building blocks to grow. Then, when you get to the gym, concentrate on your form. Perform compound exercises and weight training four times a week on average. Never underestimate the value of a good night's sleep. Remember that muscular tissue grows outside of the gym when you allow your body to relax and recover after exercises.
7. Work your full range of motion
Don’t take any shortcuts. “Aim for the largest range of motion you can achieve in your exercises,” says Lee Boyce, C.P.T. “Your muscles will do more work per rep, and it will result in your breaking down more tissue by the end of the workout.”
8. Carefully consider cardio
If bulking up is your aim, LaCerte advises cutting back on aerobic activities because you'll be burning far too many calories. So, what should you do if you still want to exercise? According to LaCerte, “a modest jog a couple days per week for 20 minutes is sufficient.” Of course, if you want to burn fat, you should focus on eating enough protein every day (one gram of protein per pound of ideal body weight), while keeping your overall caloric consumption modest.
9. Choose supplements intelligently
Supplements, according to some trainers and lifters, can play an important role in enhancing muscular development. If you believe that hypothesis, you're probably already taking protein supplements—but what else are you doing? Trink notes that creatine, for example, "looks to be about the most effective strength- and size-building product." You could also try peppermint to improve your performance. According to Cardiello, the aroma "alters your impression of how hard you're doing out," making it appear "less demanding, slower-paced, and easier to complete."
10. Prepare yourself for endurance training
When it comes to endurance training, you'll need to stay hydrated and make sure you're eating appropriately because this type of training is quite demanding on your body. You should conduct a solid combination of aerobic and weight training. You should also use high-intensity interval training, or HIIT, to improve your aerobic capacity. You'll most likely be sweating profusely and burning a lot of calories, so be prepared.
Health and Fitness Tips
Exercise Daily. Exercise daily for at least an hour.
Eat the Right Foods and Portion Each Meal. No matter how bad your stomach is telling you to go for candy over healthy food, try to stay away from sweets.
Keep Track of Calories and Food Intake Per Day.
Be Sure to Get Sleep.
Physical Fitness Tip
Use the six tips below to help you get the most from your strength workouts.
Focus on form, not weight.
Keep challenging muscles.
Give muscles time off.
Healthy Workout Tips
Piece your workout together. You don’t need to get all your exercise at one time. Ten minutes morning, noon, and night can give much of the same benefit as 30 minutes all at once.
Exercise with a friend. Finding a workout partner can help keep you on track and motivate you to get out the door.
Keep it brisk. When you walk, make it brisk, since this may help control weight better than walking at a leisurely pace. What is brisk enough? Walk as though you are meeting someone for lunch and you are a little late.
Move your feet before you eat. Hit the gym or go for a 20-minute walk with coworkers, and have lunch afterward.
Try a pedometer. Step-counters (pedometers) are an easy, inexpensive way to motivate yourself to be active. Work up to 10,000 steps per day.
Turn off the TV, computer, and smartphone. Cutting back on screen time is a great way to curb your “sit time.” Move around instead, by visiting the gym or even cleaning the house.
Turn sit time into fit time. Try to combine cardiovascular exercise with a sedentary activity that you already do. For example, try doing simple exercises while watching TV, or set a reminder at work to get up and walk a few minutes every hour.
Sign up for a class. Check out the fitness course schedule at your local gym or community center, or the dance or yoga class schedule at a nearby studio. You may find that having the structure of a class helps you learn a new activity and keeps you on track.
Plan exercise into your day. Set aside a specific time in your schedule to exercise and put it in your planner.
Reward yourself. Set short-term goals—and reward yourself for achieving them. Try targeting a specific event, such as a road race or a walk-for-charity, to participate in—this can help keep you motivated.
Are you tired of putting up with the nuisance of going to the gym and not getting results? If this sounds familiar, the next obvious step is to look for a knowledgeable personal trainer with demonstrated experience. But if you are unable to take that step—or if you choose to do it alone—you will try this, too, fitness. To assist you, we spoke with a few of the country's top personal trainers.