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Deciding upon a workout plan and actually achieving it are two very different things.

You can identify what you want to do, plan out your activities and map out your nutrition to complement it but all of that is (obviously) for nought unless you successfully afford yourself the necessary time to pull it off, but while this can sometimes feel like a burden — particularly in this busy, nine-to-five life that many of us lead nowadays — but it is important to understand that this is easier than you might imagine.

Below are some handy tips to be aware of which can help you make the most of your time and to avoid those self-constructed barriers  which can get in the way of a healthier lifestyle.

You don’t have to go all-in

Some people in search of a more active lifestyle can fall into a trap of putting too much pressure on themselves. If your goals are too lofty, they become more difficult to achieve which can lead to a feeling of failure. Remember, you don’t have to go too hard — set realistic goals and allow yourself to tick more boxes than you otherwise might if your goals are set too high.

Don’t be hard on yourself when you slip

Unless you are a professional athlete, it is OK to skip a workout here and there. Your body might be weary, or sometimes life can just get in the way, but it is important to be kind to your own feeling of self-worth when it comes to the gym.

Don’t expect too much too soon

You are not going to get out of shape overnight. Conversely, you are not going to get IN shape overnight. If you don’t see the type of results you expect after two or three weeks, it is important to not be dispirited and be too hard on yourself. It is a marathon not a sprint, as they say.

To make any exercise regime as friendly as possible, it is also important to remember:

  • Warm up beforehand
  • Cool down afterwards and let your heart rate return to normal
  • Drink plenty of water
  • Listen to your body when it comes to aches and pains

Momentum is also an important element. Start slow and build towards something, rather than beginning at maximum intensity. Allow yourself the necessary headspace to grow because if your goals are difficult to achieve, odds are you’ll miss them every so often.

If you are able to maintain your drive, your inspiration and your motivation to better yourself it is far easier than repeatedly failing to achieve goals which are too lofty.

Those heavier reps will come in time, you just have to let yourself get there. Remember, there are no shortcuts.