What qualifies as a workout?
You heard it probably before: becoming healthier requires a mix of good nutrition habits and working out. We at Eat better, not perfect fully endorse that statement!
Alright, awesome! But what exactly qualifies as a workout, you might be wondering? Do I need to get myself a gym membership or invest in a lot of equipment to work out at home?
Our answer: Perhaps, but not necessarily! Continue reading to learn what we know from experience with hundreds of successful clients.
Why nutrition AND working out?
Before diving into the nuts and bolts of what workouts you can do, let's go back to the importance of mixing good nutrition habits with moving your body.
I'm speaking from my own personal experience here. I have always been active growing up but I had zero understanding of the importance of good nutrition. For me, having a good meal before a basketball game meant 8 crackers with Nutella, since I needed the energy, right?
I was the living example of someone working out, without taking care of my nutrition. The result? Plenty of injuries, having a cold 3-4 times every year, lots of moments of low energy, and poor results for all the work I put in.
That all changed when I learned all about nutrition back in 2011 during my first nutrition coach certification. It was a day and night difference for me, I became a different person, getting rid of all the issues I mentioned before in a matter of weeks.
Working out without being mindful of your nutrition is almost a waste of time. You could do so much better!
Now, what about eating right without working out? That is a completely different story since many people that start their journey towards a healthier life are in this situation. In fact, many of our clients start out this way. And what have we learned? YES! People get absolutely good results by "just" switching to healthier nutrition habits.
We've seen that although results can be good, they are rarely GREAT, and they are harder to maintain. What we've seen is that the best results come from:
Focusing on healthier eating habits first
Then, once you're adjusted to these habits, introduce complementary movement
Why does this approach work best? Because nutrition truly is the foundation, and working out is the proverbial cherry on the (healthy) pie.
Without going into the technical details, just know that the hormonal effects of working out are doing some good things in your body that help with higher energy, weight loss, better sleep and so much more.
What workouts can I do?
Ok, now that we got that out of the way, let's see what workout options we have, guided by the following rules:
Firstly: Anything is better than nothing!
Secondly: Start slow and build it up from there
Third: Find something that you enjoy doing and do it consistently
With the above in mind, here are some options you want to consider:
1) Low-intensity cardio workouts
Things like walking (recommended for real beginners), swimming, running or cycling at a low to moderate pace
Take it outdoors whenever you can
Even 20 minutes of any of these 2-3 times a week will be beneficial
2) "Recovery" workouts
Such as yoga, stretching & mobility training
These are great to calm your mind and can be seen as body maintenance
We love the easy-going yoga videos from "Yoga with Adriene"
3) Strength training: Gym, lifting, low impact high force (3/5/3)
Everything that moves your muscles against any kind of resistance (lifting weights, bodyweight training...)
If you are new to this kind of training, do research on proper form and the basic exercises you should get really good at like squats, push-ups, deadlifts, pull-ups...
2-3 strength workouts per week can already do amazing things for body composition and injury prevention
4) High intensity / mixed training:
Things like sports-specific training, bootcamp, CrossFit, HIIT,...
These are typically more demanding and require a good basics in order not to get injured
Not only are these great to mix it up, they usually are more fun as well, especially when in a group setting
Variety is the spice of life! Don't limit yourself to only one of the above options, because each one has different benefits. Switch it up, keep your body guessing, reduce boredom and risk of injury.
Working out is a great supplement to the foundation of healthy nutrition habits, and everyone can benefit from even the smallest amount of movement.
The most important thing is to start slow and build it up over time, even if that means going for 5-minute walks at first.
Ready to get some sweat on? You've got this!!
Do you also want to reach your optimal weight, lose excess fat, and/or simply have more energy? Then discover our programs here.
Not sure if our programs are right for you? Book a free consultation with our customer care team here.
Kevin Clement, Founder Eat better, not perfect.
Questions or suggestions? Let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org