It’s never too late to begin a healthy lifestyle.
Losing weight can be extremely difficult, especially when you don’t know where to start. If you have a hefty weight loss goal and need a little help getting started, here are seven tips to begin your journey to a happier, healthier you!
1. Get Your Gear Ready
If you’re serious about losing weight, you’ll want the proper gear. Finding a comfortable and supportive pair of shoes is important! Consider buying a half-size larger than your regular shoes, in case your feet swell a little when you exercise. You don’t need to spend a fortune on athletic gear, just make sure you have what you need to get started. A comfortable and supportive sports bra is also a good investment!
2. Check in With Your Doctor
Check in with your doctor to make sure your weight loss plan is healthy and safe for you. Your doctor will want to make sure you aren’t overdoing it. It’s important to listen to your body. If you’re putting too much stress on your bones or joints, your body will let you know. Signs of overexertion include chest pain, pain that shoots down your arm or up your neck, or severe headaches. Don’t be discouraged if you can’t run at the beginning. Losing weight and keeping it off the healthy way might require you to start out with baby steps.
3. Take Care of Your Skin
Sweat and movement that your body isn’t used to can leave your skin raw and irritated. Use a safe and natural lotion or a plant-based balm on your thighs, neck, arms, around your sports bra and anywhere else that might be prone to rubbing. Keep blisters at bay by wearing your new comfy shoes and socks that fit without sliding down.
4. Ease Into It
Start where you can. Push yourself, but not to the point of a possible injury. If a 10-minute walk is all you can handle, start there and continue to work your way up to 30-60 minutes of walking. Boost your total by five minutes each week. This slow and steady pace will give your body a chance to adapt and reduce your risk of injury as you get stronger. Remember, walking leads to jogging, and jogging leads to running! Keep yourself motivated and stick with it!
5. Relieve Aches and Pains
You might feel sore at the beginning if you’re using muscles that haven’t been used in a while. For muscle aches, use ice packs, heating pads or an Epsom salt bath. If your soreness is limiting your movement, take a day off from your workout. Severe pain means you’re pushing yourself too hard. If icing and a day of rest doesn’t resolve the pain, check in with a doctor to make sure everything’s OK.
6. Track Your Progress
Staying motivated can be difficult, but tracking your progress in a training journal can help you see how far you’ve come, and give you that extra push you’re looking for. It doesn’t need to be super-detailed. Just take a few minutes after each workout to write down how far you walked and how long it took you. Once you start to see signs of improvement, your motivation will be unstoppable!
7. Make it Fun!
If you dread exercising, it’s much harder to find your motivation. If it isn’t your favorite thing to do, find your own ways to make it a little more fun. Make a workout playlist full of your favorite songs and listen to it while you walk, buy a few fun, colorful workout shirts that will make you feel great as you work toward your goal, or find a friend to travel your journey with you, and keep each other motivated!
Women’s Health Magazine
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