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Fitness Tips

Fit­ness Tips

Strength Train­ing Tips

  • Include some type of strength train­ing in your weekly exer­cise reg­i­men no mat­ter what your fit­ness goals are. Resis­tance train­ing pro­vides many health ben­e­fits. Read arti­cles that dis­cuss the ben­e­fits further.


  • Don’t take the all or noth­ing approach. It’s bet­ter to do a lit­tle train­ing than none at all. So, even if you can only fit one strength train­ing rou­tine in a week, you’ll still ben­e­fit from it.


  • If you’re a woman, don’t be afraid of strength train­ing. You won’t bulk up (unless you are really try­ing to). And, resis­tance train­ing is easy to start. With pro­fes­sional guid­ance and direc­tion, you can quickly learn how to train properly.


  • Be sure you are train­ing with the proper resis­tance size. Ide­ally, you should choose a size that fatigues you after 10–12 reps.


  • Focus on cor­rect form. If you are unable to use proper, safe form when per­form­ing an exer­cise then you prob­a­bly are using weights that are too heavy. Choose a size that allows you to train with cor­rect form.


  • Con­cen­trate on the muscle(s) you are work­ing dur­ing a spe­cific exer­cise and don’t allow your other mus­cle groups to assist with the exercise.


  • How long you rest between sets is impor­tant. For build­ing mus­cles and get­ting bulkier the rest time should be longer. For more mus­cle endurance and leaner, sculpted mus­cles the rest time should be shorter.


  • The fre­quency of your strength train­ing depends on whether your goals are to get big­ger and stronger (less often) or whether you want to get leaner and more defined mus­cles (more often).


  • Try the peri­odiza­tion tech­nique which progress you every week over a 4-week time­frame. Try a plan of start­ing with lighter weights and more reps, and each week increas­ing the weight size appro­pri­ately and decreas­ing the num­ber of reps.


Walk­ing Tips


  • Bend your elbows. This will cause your arms to swing faster which in return will help your legs to move faster.


  • Keep your stride short. Don’t take long strides that feel awkward.


  • Think heal-to-toe. Push-off with your heal. Toes should leave the ground last.


  • Keep your abs pulled in and tight.


  • Include inter­val train­ing walks that include peri­ods of very brisk walk­ing fol­lowed by slower, recov­ery times.


Exer­cise and Work­out Tips


  • Replace your sneak­ers often. At least after every 250 — 500 miles of walking/running.


  • Stair climb­ing is a low-impact alter­na­tive to running.


  • Choose exer­cises that you enjoy doing. You’ll be more inclined to stick with a fit­ness reg­i­men when it includes things you like to do.


  • Change your fit­ness rou­tine every 4–6 weeks to pre­vent a work­out plateau.


  • Strive to include total body work­outs. These include: car­dio­vas­cu­lar exer­cises, strength train­ing (both upper and lower body), core train­ing and stretching/flexibility.


  • Mea­sure your exer­cise inten­sity. There are sev­eral meth­ods: heart rate, rat­ing of per­ceived exer­tion, talk test.


  • When­ever pos­si­ble, take the stairs instead of an ele­va­tor.
    Stretch­ing and flex­i­b­lity are very impor­tant aspects of good phys­i­cal fit­ness, so don’t over­look them. Ide­ally, you should stretch before each work­out (both car­dio and resis­tance exer­cises) and after each work­out. If you can’t do both, then make the after stretch­ing a priority.


  • When stretch­ing before a work­out, it’s best to stretch after you’ve got­ten warmed-up for about 5 min­utes (your mus­cles will be looser).
    When work­ing out on car­dio equip­ment (e.g. ellip­ti­cal train­ers), don’t lean heav­ily on the handrails. This will reduce the amount of calo­ries you burn.


Weight Loss & Diet Tips


  • Exer­cise is not enough. You must also include healthy eat­ing habits.


  • Make a list of all the ben­e­fits reg­u­lar exer­cise pro­vides you. Every­thing from feel­ing health­ier, sleep­ing bet­ter, pre­vent­ing depres­sion, feel­ing stronger, etc. Post this list some­where that you will eas­ily see it every­day so that it can serve as a reminder why you should workout.


  • Eat break­fast every day. Peo­ple who eat break­fast con­sume fewer total calo­ries dur­ing the day then those that don’t.


  • Don’t waste your calo­ries on drinks. Drink low-calorie or no calo­rie drinks instead (prefer­ably water).


  • Try to take at least 20 min­utes to com­plete a meal. This is how long it takes for your brain to rec­og­nize that your stom­ach is full.


  • Use a lot of spices and sea­son­ings when cook­ing low-fat/low-calorie meals. They can make your meal taste so much bet­ter and there­fore make you feel more satisfied.


  • Decrease your caf­feine intake. Too much caf­feine can decrease the burn­ing of stored fat.


  • Con­sume at least 64 ounces of water per day, plus an addi­tional 16 ounces for every hour of moderate-intensity exercise.


  • Each day fill a container(s) with your daily water sup­ply so you’ll always know how much you’ve drank and ensure you drink the required daily amount.


Run­ning Tips


  • If you are new to run­ning be sure that you have been walk­ing for 30 min­utes at least 3 days a week about 3 months before you try to tran­si­tion to running.


  • Do not bounce or over­stride. Don’t let your foot get ahead of your knee. Run from the hips down with the upper body straight up and used only for balance.


  • Breath in through your nose and out through pursed lips.


  • Choose shoes appro­pri­ate for run­ning and that fit well — they don’t cause any dis­com­fort or blisters.


  • When run­ning in colder weather be sure to wear a hat. A large amount of heat can be lost through your head.


  • Replace your run­ning shoes at least every 400–500 miles.

Hol­i­day Tips


  • Cre­ate a plan ahead of time. Before the hol­i­days sneak up on you, cre­ate a plan for incor­po­rat­ing fit­ness and good nutri­tion into your daily rou­tine. Eval­u­ate your hol­i­day and then deter­mine how much time you will real­is­ti­cally have avail­able to devote to work­ing out and/or eat­ing healthy meals.


  • Sched­ule your work­outs. Mark them on the cal­en­dar and set-aside time to com­plete them. Con­sider them as impor­tant as any other appoint­ment or event you have marked on your calendar.


  • When at a party, start by eat­ing some of the healthy offer­ings. For exam­ple, veg­etable sticks (with­out dip), fruit pieces, plain chicken pieces, etc. Then move on to some of the less healthy (but yummy) offer­ings. You will be less likely to overindulge on these foods if you have already filled-up on some of the health­ier items. Yet, you will not feel deprived or unsatisfied.


  • Avoid wast­ing calo­ries on alco­holic bev­er­ages. The aver­age alco­holic drink con­tains 150–200 calo­ries per glass. Indulge in just 2–3 drinks and you’ve drunk the equiv­a­lent calo­ries of an entire meal. If you par­take in these bev­er­ages, choose wisely. For exam­ple, instead of hav­ing a full glass of wine, try mix­ing half a glass of wine with sparkling water or with a diet cola. This will help cut your calo­ries in half.


  • When shop­ping, don’t search for the clos­est park­ing space. Park far away and take advan­tage of the walk you get.


  • Don’t put your fit­ness goals on hold until the New Year. If you can’t exer­cise as often dur­ing this time period as you nor­mally do, adjust appro­pri­ately. Don’t use the excuse that since you don’t have time for your full work­out you just won’t work­out at all. Instead accept your lim­ited avail­abil­ity and sim­ply reduce the fre­quency and/or dura­tion of your exer­cise. It’s much bet­ter to cut your fit­ness time in half than to com­pletely elim­i­nate it.


  • On the day of a party, be sure to eat reg­u­larly all day long. If the party is in the evening, eat break­fast, lunch and a snack before hand (just as you would on any other day). Once you are at the party, go ahead and indulge in some of the fun, deli­cious foods. Since you have eaten meals ear­lier in the day, you prob­a­bly will find that you aren’t tempted to go over­board and eat every­thing in sight. How­ever, if you starve all day long attempt­ing to save up all your calo­ries for the party, you will be so fam­ished by the time it begins that it will be dif­fi­cult not to overeat.


  • On days that you really lack moti­va­tion or sim­ply do not have time for your com­plete exer­cise rou­tine, com­mit to do just 10 min­utes of exer­cise. You’ll prob­a­bly end up doing more than that once you get started. Even if you only end up com­plet­ing 10 min­utes, that is still a lot bet­ter than zero minutes.


  • When pre­sented with a large vari­ety of food options, it’s tempt­ing to want to eat every­thing. Rather than eat­ing one large slice of choco­late cake or a huge plate of meat­balls, select a sam­pling of bite size pieces of sev­eral of the desert or appe­tizer offer­ings. This way you get the enjoy­ment of try­ing many dif­fer­ent foods with­out overeating.


  • Exer­cise at home. You’ll be more inclined to follow-through on your exer­cise com­mit­ment if you don’t have to drive some­where to do your work­out. Plus, you won’t waste any time on dri­ving, park­ing, the locker room or wait­ing to use equip­ment. Work­ing out at home requires very lit­tle equip­ment (even can be equipment-free) and is quite inexpensive.


  • When run­ning errands or shop­ping, be sure to pack some healthy snacks to have on-hand. Then after you work-up a big appetite, you won’t be tempted to grab some­thing at the mall food court or the fast food restau­rant on the way home.