Step One: Build a support network. Reach out and share your goals with your friends and family. Create a network of people you know you can count on to help you reach your goals. It will still be your job to follow through, but creating a network of support you will know who to call to go for an evening walk, to hit the gym or who may be willing to be your accountability buddy. I reached out to my cousin who lives across the country. She and I have similar goals, so we are both motivated to check in on each other and challenge one other to do more.
Step Two: Start logging your Food:
I like using the “myfitnesspal” app because it helps me set calorie goals and it is on my phone so it is always accessable. Don’t stress the calories for the first few weeks. Again, Don’t stress the calories for the first few weeks!! Just get in the habit of logging everything you put in your mouth.
Step Three: Start Moving! This is what it is all about! Forget how you look and revil in what it feels like to move your body and feel stronger with each new day. No more negative thoughts!
No one is perfect. Everyone is on their own health journey. You are capable of anything you set your mind to! All it takes is the first step. My cousin and I take it one day at a time and celebrate each day we meet our small goals ( i.e., logging our food and doing the workouts). 4 weeks later we are down 18lbs each. We are still working with you.
Here are the routines we did; We started small and made it a goal to add one more rep or a new exercise each day. We both may be a bit competitive and added a few more (benefits of having a partner).
It is all about making new habits you can stick with!
At the bottom of this post I will include modifications for some of the moves we did. I am very aware of how challenging some of these moves can be with extra weight on your frame.
Carry an extra 100lbs has set me back from doing 42 standard push ups to starting from my knees, and that is okay.
Make sure you don’t pull on your neck, keep your chin to the sky.
Side crunches, make sure to keep your hips on the ground and bell button pulled to your spine.
Back kicks; Oh how I love and hate you all at once. These are a great for your core as well as your backside.
Planks are a great place for everyone to start. Here are a few variations so that you can start where you are currently at and work your way up. We started with a goal of 30 seconds and the challenge to add more time with each day.
Squat: Stand with the feet parallel or turned out 15 degrees—whatever is most comfortable. Slowly start to crouch by bending the hips and knees until the thighs are at least parallel to the floor. Make sure the heels do not rise off the floor. Press through the heels to return to a standing position. Squats are a great basic movement to master as you start in your fitness journey.
From there we would add in one or more of the following exercises and max out our reps so that we could challenge ourselves to add one more each time.
Mountain Climber: Starting on your hands and knees, bring the left foot forward directly under the chest while straightening the right leg. Keeping the hands on the ground and core tight, jump and switch legs. The left leg should now be extended behind the body with the right knee forward. Start at your own pace and work toward making this a fast paced movement. This is a great move to get your hear pumping while you tone your shoulders, back and core.
Wall Sit: Slowly slide your back down a wall until the thighs are parallel to the ground. Make sure the knees are directly above the ankles and keep the back straight. Go for as long as you can and make a goal to reach 60 seconds. These are a great exercise that you can easily enhance the challenge by adding weight to your lap (a child, a bag of dogfood) or you could add in bicep curls to maximize your time.
The Glute Bridge is another great one that can be modified to enhance the challenge. Focus on keeping your core tight, knees together and shoulders pressed into the floor. Hold at the top, squeezing your buns for 15 seconds each. Do as many as you can challenging your self to hold it longer each time. Want to really challenge yourself? Extend one leg our at a time while holding at the top.
Triceps Dip: AKA no more turkey arm 🙂 Get seated near a step,chair or bench. Sit on the floor with knees slightly bent, and grab the edge of the elevated surface and straighten the arms. Bend them to a 90-degree angle, and straighten again while the heels push towards the floor. For some extra fire, reach try lifting one leg at a time.
Modifications to some of the moves:
I know that getting up and down from the floor is a unique challenge when you are carrying lots of extra weight. Check out some of these modifications to some basic moves to keep you of the floor while you are building your stability, strength and endurance. Once you are steady and confidant one one modification challenge yourself to try the next level.
Core work modificaitons.
Starting from an elevated surface will allow you to focus on your balance and stability while you refine the movements and build your endurance.
Push up modifications:
Start against a wall and focus on keeping your core tight and your form as you slowly lower into the wall and press back agains the wall.
Once you master wall pushes move to an elevated surface, you can adapt the elevation to your needs, start with the table, move down to couch level. Once these are easy move down to a step, before you know it you will be cranking them out from the floor and feeling empowered.
Don’t hesitate to start from your knees once you are on the floor. Form is more important than ego ;). It is all about doing your best and getting stronger every day.
If you are ready for the standard push up but find that it hurts your wrist, grab some weights to help stabiles your wrist ( not to mention the added challenge of going just a little lower in each rep.
Nothing is going to change over night.
Take it one day at a time and each day’s victory will add up before you know it.
I didn’t push my self to hard this last month. I focused on reestablishing good habits and making focused movement a part of my daily routine again.
With these simple goals in place, I was able to loose 18 pounds.
As the weight comes of I will have to make more deliberate and specific activity and nutrition goals.
By allowing myself to focus on the most immediate goals I was able to successfully begin my journey and not get overwhelmed.
Watch for future post on:
Finding your motivations, Setting goals, Staying motivated and the progressive strategies I use to enhance weight loss and build strength.
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