I am pleased to welcome a guest post from my colleague Gillian Stephen who is a Fitness and Nutrition coach, watch out for more from Gillian in the future….
How many of you have resolved to get fit this year and what are your reasons, is it for weight loss, getting into smaller clothes sizes or for good health.
Keeping fit is not just for ‘vanity’, there are many health benefits which can assist us in having a better quality of life. Some of them are:
- Decrease the risk of disease.
- Manage disease.
- Weight Management.
- Decrease/Manage stress levels.
- Improve your moods.
- Help prevent depression.
- Increase energy levels.
- Improved sleep.
- Increase tone.
- Increase bone density.
To maximise on the benefits you should incorporate both physical activity and a structured exercise program.
For physical activity the current guidelines are at least 30 mins daily, some examples are walking, running, swimming, cycling, taking the stairs instead of the lift, gardening and cleaning. This will help to maintain your fitness levels, work several muscles for efficient movement and keep your balance.
Your structured exercise program should combine cardio and weight training. Examples of cardio are brisk walking, jogging, running and cycling. Examples of weight training are body weight exercises like squats, lunges and the plank and using weights.
Cardio strengthens your cardiovascular system making it more efficient, helping to prevent cardiovascular disease as well as burn calories and fat. This should be done for at least 20 – 30 minutes 3 – 5 times a week.
Weight training that many women in particular shy away from helps to increase tone and builds muscle, which burns calories and fat even when at rest. Hence the slimmer waist, the toned abs, thighs and bottom that most of us seek. This should be done for at least 20 – 40 minutes 3 times a week.
Ways in which to stay on track are:
- Find activities that you enjoy.
- Garner the assistance of your support network to help out with child care and/of for encouragement.
- Get the help of a professional.
- Get an exercise buddy.
- Go to a group exercise class.
- Schedule activity into your diary like any other social event.
- Find the time of day and days that can fit into your schedule.
- List down your goals with an action plan and a time frame to achieve them.
- Keep track of your achievements and reward yourself with a non-food award.
By combining a regular fitness regime with a healthy balanced diet you are well on the way to bettering your health for life.
Gillian Stephen is a Fitness and Nutrition coach and also a mother of 2, a 1 year old and a 4 year old that keep her very busy.
The main areas that she focus’s on are weight loss and pre and post natal. The latter certification was brought about by her own pregnancies. She realised the importance of her own diet and fitness through pregnancy and post natal, to regain her shape and prior fitness levels.
She supports individuals by helping them put together a strategy for weight loss. It incorporates making better food choices and fitting exercise into their busy schedules, such that they lose the weight and keep it off, a lifestyle change.
To contact Gillian:
Follow me on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Gillian_Stephen
© Gillian Stephen