Getting Started Into Fitness
So you want to get fit and in shape, but don’t know how to get started?
This is something that luckily hasn't been an issue for me over the last 11 years; having been a professional rugby player with various teams during that time means that I have always kept fit. However like anyone I had to start somewhere and it can always be a very tricky choice. I want to help make that easier for you.
Now while I haven’t had to think about getting fit specifically for rugby for a long time, I am always embarking on new projects and new hobbies, like jujitsu and boxing, which does mean like a non-sportsmen I have to look at where to start, how to get in shape for it and who to work with. Now unless you want to take up a team sport you are going to need to choose the right gym, and start in the right way to get the results heading in the right direction.
Within this blog I am going to give you a simple session to get started and some advice on what to do. No doubt your new years resolution was to get fit and you thought that signing up for a gym membership was the answer…So, I have a few questions for you, how many times have you gone, and what did you do when you got there?
Lets make something clear there is no point in paying for a gym membership if you don’t know what you’re doing. Just signing up for it and seeing that monthly payment coming out, doesn't mean you are getting fit. It’s like people wearing training gear all the time and never actually working out. Sure you feel better but you still aren’t actually doing anything.
So my first piece of advice is make sure you take that free PT sessions that you were no doubt offered with your membership. Some gyms even offer a series of personal training sessions. I would definitely look into this first, over anything else. Taking the time to get a simple explanation of how the gym works, what sort of work you could be doing and ultimately the right technique is so important. The Internet is awash with people who have no idea what they are doing, and subsequently lift and train very badly. This is through naivety more than anything. There are the other groups of people who are too proud to ask advice and think they have it all worked out. You see gyms all the time full of these people, doing half reps or obscure exercises. They are often the first people to offer unwanted advice. So you can see why it’s important to seek out professional advice. This should help make your gym membership investment go a little further. Of course you need to do your own research to make sure the trainers are any good in the first place.
Luckily we live in a world of social media and the Internet where you can find out if a gym is any good and the trainers within it. There will be some forum, somewhere which will have info. Don't just rush out and sign up for the first gym you find. It doesn’t matter if it’s just round the corner from you, or on the way to work. Another key point when choosing a gym to get started is to make sure you aren’t lulled by glitzy cardio machines. Once you develop your training knowledge and your goals change, you are going to want to spread your wings. You want a good selection of weights, both free and machine. You won’t want to just jump on the treadmill because it looks the simplest bit of kit. Trust me even people get that wrong to.
If you are really serious about getting into shape and you want to invest some money, then I would purchase a course of personal training sessions. Obviously with someone who knows what they are doing. (Read my previous comments about doing your due diligence on trainers). You may not even have to purchase a gym membership; you could just go to a PT gym. You pay for the PT Sessions, use the gym and facilities for free. This can often be for the more serious person as its quite hard core. You turn up, you train, you shower and you leave. It guarantees you will work hard and get results. However you don't get the frills of a normal gym. This is the kind of training that I did when I was coming back from injury. I started working with the fitness and nutrition guru Phil Learney at Ultimate Performance in Mayfair. I would train at 7.00 in the morning with him and then go into Wasps training. UP is a great place for men and women looking to get body transformations. It’s not like a David Lloyd or Virgin Active. There are gyms like this across London you just need to again take your time and find the one you like. You have waited this long to get fit, why not wait a little longer and make the right choice.
You need to work out what kind of personal trainer you want, what kind of person is going to appeal to you, you don’t want someone who doesn’t know what they’re talking about but also won’t let you get off. You want someone to push you, there’s no point in spending money on health and fitness and equipment and food and diet if you’re not going to put the work in. If you watch anybody train in the gym with the personal trainer, there are two types of clients. The ones that get on with the training, they push themselves hard. Yes of course they moan a little bit, and have off days. I moan all the time and have the little voices in my head that says give up, but at the end of the day I get on with it. The other type of person in the bargainer. The client who try’s every trick in the book to get out of training, they talk non-stop, ask all sorts of questions of their PT. They say, “If I do 10 of these then I don't have to do any of those”, at the end of the day that is fine but you are wasting your time. Nobody get in shape without hard work and sacrifice.
If you can’t afford to go to a gym there are plenty of resources on the Internet that will help you get fit and get in shape. For example at my site, www.jhbodyfire.com we are always giving away training sessions and advice to get you going. We also have a YouTube channel and a range of new downloadable training packages coming. If you can’t wait for them then you need to get onto Google and social media and have a scout around for people. There are many really good services out there, which will help you, whatever level you are looking for. You can download a generic training package in seconds, or you can pay a little more for a bespoke service.
You have to choose these very carefully. Do your background research. Do not buy into anything and everything that people are selling to you. Just because it looks all good, and they put motivational quotes up, often not all is what it seems. I know a number of people who have been badly stung. Online training is not a problem, but from verified people. If you do find advice that you like, and that you buy into, from people you trust, then stick with it. Do not chop and change between things. If you speak to seven different people about your training programs and what you’re eating, you’ll get seven different peoples opinions back in response. So and so will say “I was doing this”, Mary in the office is going to say “I’m doing that”, someone’s going to say “I heard that’s not very good”. Find something you believe in, find something that is reputable, whether you pay for it or not, stick with it for six weeks and see how you get on and then you can review the process. You are never going to get instant results. You need to take your time and work hard. No matter what the outside world may tell you on social media or around the water cooler.
A couple of instant pointers on what NOT to do!! Do not try to bolt things on to your program unless it says you can. Don't start adding sessions in or trying to change what you have been set. If your coach or company you are working with is any good then they will have factored in all you need. Do not try and be too clever. Training is very simple at its core, if you’re trying to loose weight then getting your heart rate up will help along with lifting weights. Never forget this. If you’re trying to get bigger, you need to lift weights, high numbers of reps, and time under tension work. If stronger is your goal, then shorter reps lifting heavier weight, all of it with good technique.
Then comes eating well, if you do all the training and don't get the diet right then you are wasting your time. A lot of the public has no idea what eating well is, or what eating the kind of volume your body needs to make adaptations is. If I had a pound for the number of times I get contacted on twitter from lads wanting to get bigger but struggling, I would be a millionaire. They always say they train 4 times a week, and are doing all the right things. Then when you ask about diet you find they aren’t eating nearly enough. Or if they do eat 4 /5 times a day the levels of carbs, protein and fats are not right. Diet is what will help get you where you are going. You need to be eating meat, fish, veg, chicken, good carbohydrates; you need to fuel your training. You need good fats in your diet. You need to avoid junk or processed food. It’s not rocket science. You can’t treat yourself, if you’re a fatty, with all due respect, you can’t train for two days and then reward yourself afterword’s. It’s not going to work out. Eating well is not easy, it’s not always fun, but anything in life that is worth going after is usually hard. Otherwise we would all have 6 packs, drives Ferraris and live in huge houses.
So get thinking about your goal, think about how you are going to achieve it, find the right method whether it be a gym, programme, PT, or all three. Get a diet plan and get working. If you stick at it, you will see the results that you want and deserve!
For more tips, supplement advice and training kit reviews. Then please visit our YouTube channel BodyFire TV. We also have some really good social media channels that will keep you up to date with all the info and latest releases from James Haskell Health and Fitness. Twitter @JHBodyfire Instagram @JHBodyfire
There is of course our award winning supplement range, which has all you need to boost your training. All the supplements are tested so there is no unwanted rubbish or chemicals in there. They are safe for members of the armed services and elite sport.
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