At 35 years old I was 325 pounds. I had spent my entire life morbdly obese.
When I decided I was ready to start my my journey to lose weight, I had no plan on working out…it didn't even seem possible for me. I just wanted to lose weight by changing my eating habits.
For the first few weeks, I focused on my food. All I did was eat less and count calories. I started eating between 1800 and 2000 calories per day. As I began losing weight, my confidence was building and I started to feel more comfortable moving my body. I could get up from the coach without struggle, do more for myself without asking others to help me, and complete my daily routine without feeling as tired and drained during the day.
After a few weeks, I started walking. I would walk my dogs around my neighborhood- just a couple blocks at first. It started with a 10 minute walk, then turned into a 20 minute walk. Soon my dogs and I were walking a few miles each day.
As the weight began coming off, several month into my journey, I felt stronger and more confidant by just walking and moving and being aware of my body, that is when I began hiking.
Soon I worked my way up to hiking miles at a time, and even up steep hills and mountains! As I progressed I would hike almost every day, 5 to 8 miles.
In just the past few months I have been taking yoga classes, lifting weights, and using the elliptical.
Exercise for me started very slowly. Just like with losing weight, I took it one day at a time.
Here are my tips and suggestions for starting your fitness journey:
1. Add additional walking to your day by parking further away, walking around your neighborhood, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, and getting up to walk around your home or office every hour or so.
2. Walk, walk, walk. Walk as much as possible. Set small goals for yourself. Do 5 minutes everyday if that's all you can start with. Then 10, then gradually keep increasing. Hitting those goals will make you feel so good!
3. Find a buddy to walk with or motivate you. It is so nice to have someone to do it with so on the days you don’t feel like doing it, they will help motivate you and you can keep each other going! If you do not have any people in your life who want to be your walking buddy, consider adopting a puppy. That cute face begging for a walk will be great encouragement.
4. Try at home workouts. There are so many videos on YouTube for beginners. Find something that you'd like to try, and do it in the comfort of your own home with out the worry feeling like you have to get everything just right.
5. Listen to your body. Know the difference between just being tired or not wanting to do it and actually needing to stop because you are in pain.
6. Believe in yourself. I know that I say this a lot but it is so true! Do the best that you can. Compete with yourself and no one else! Make sure that you always give it your best.
This is a journey. It will be hard and it will take time. We all start somewhere. Whats important is that you start today. Take it one day at a time and before you know it, you will only be looking back to see how far you have come!
*Note*- I am just sharing with you what worked for me and what I did to begin exercising. I am not telling you that you need to do this or that you have to do this. I am not a professional. I would recommend checking with your doctor to see what’s best for you.