7 ways to get fit according to top personal trainer

Looking for ways to get fit? It’s never too late to start exercising, says top personal trainer Michael Garry, but consistency is key.

Here, he shares his tried-and-tested tips for getting into shape sharpish.

How to get fit in 7 simple steps

Focus on consistency

Your number one goal in the early stages should be consistency, not how you look or anything else. If you aim to be consistent from this January to the following January, then everything else will fall into place. We only have a certain amount of willpower.

After Christmas lots of people say, ‘I’m going to give up sugar, I’m going to give up alcohol and I’m going to start training.’ But that’s a hell of a lot of pressure to put on yourself. It’s best to keep your goals fairly small and build from there. When it comes to exercise, start by training twice a week for the first six weeks just to build that routine.

Shop smart

A good pair of trainers is the number one thing you should invest your money in. As far as clothes are concerned, whatever you have at home at the moment is perfectly fine.

After Christmas, 80% of people try to lose weight. If this is your goal then there’s no point investing in new training gear when you’re going to lose weight and will need to buy new kit in three months’ time.

Focus on strength

Choosing the right type of exercise for your goals is important. A lot of people begin with running because they see slim runners and assume they need to replicate this to get a figure like that. But we don’t see all the other things that are involved with staying lean.

You don’t need to spend five, six or seven hours a week on the treadmill, you just need to do two to three good-quality hours of strength-building exercises a week. These should include squats, core and upper body exercises, so that when you start to do the aerobic exercise (either running or cycling) your body is strong and can absorb the impact.

Morning movement

Not choosing a specific time of day to exercise is one of the main reasons people fall off track. I recommend first thing in the morning as there’s fewer things threatening to interfere with your plans at this time of day.

If you exercise in the evening, you can easily be put off by a bad day at work or because you’ve not digested your food properly and get a stitch. In the morning you can just get up, get out and do your workout first thing.

Diet matters

We can’t rely on exercise and weight-training alone if we want to shift body fat and resculpt the body. Watching what we eat is key for losing fat, and eating plenty of high-quality protein is important for building muscle strength.

These proteins can include eggs, lean meats (unprocessed), chicken, fish, dairy produce (including yoghurt and kefir), nuts, seeds, beans and soy products such as tofu. If weight loss is your goal, I always recommend eating two meals a day (brunch and an evening meal).

Stretch for success

Stretching is the secret to staying strong, pain-free and mobile. It makes exercise more comfortable, improves our posture and prevents injury.

Try a trainer

If you know that you’ve tried time and time again, and failed to develop an exercise routine, booking an hour with a personal trainer each week can really help. That way you’ll have someone to help keep you motivated. They’ll also make sure you’re doing all the exercises correctly.

Find out more about Michael Garry

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