The other day I posted a call-out for blog topics on Facebook. I got some great ideas — and I’ll be writing about all of them, thanks — but I was left with one nagging question: What fitness program *should* people be following? How do we know what to do? Should we run, lift stretch or follow the program on the infomercial? And how much of all that should we do, how often, etc.? What’s optimum?
Here’s what you should do: SOMETHING. The best program ever invented is the one you will follow. I do not care what it is. Just do something. Get into a routine. Incorporate it into your life. MOVE. If you’ve not been active recently, move for 5 minutes every day. And then bump it up to 6 minutes, and then eventually, you’ll find yourself able to handle it for 30 minutes or more. But start with 5 minutes if that’s all the time and energy you have to give. (True story: I started with 5 minutes on a creaky old stationary cycle that was in my parents’ basement.)
Once you get into a routine, tweak it a little. Try something new: a class, a video, a sport. If you like that new thing, keep doing it. If you don’t like it, try something else. Mix it up. Have fun. If you love being outdoors, get into the garden, take a hike, pedal the carriage trails or go swimming in a lake.
If you’re an indoor person, don’t limit yourself to only the treadmill or the weights room, or to only Turbo/P90X/yoga/Zumba. Do some of everything. But only after you’ve already started SOMETHING and it’s become part of your daily life.
We tend to overcomplicate fitness. And yes, once you get into it for a while, those complications can make it fun and even more effective. But at the beginning or even in the middle? Don’t worry about that (or even what your neighbor/sister-in-law/coworker is doing). Do what you like to do, and know that you’re following the best program ever — simply due to the fact you’re following it.