> How I Began My Health & Fitness Journey - Its All Zara

How I Began My Health & Fitness Journey

May 28, 2018

Hi readers, welcome back to my blog!

I've had a lot of people recently ask me how I got started on my journey to become healthier and more physically active, especially as I'm starting to see results from it as well more people are noticing it. I felt it was something best written as a post as there are a few ways for me to break it down for people to read and understand!

My weight loss/health journey "officially" began in June 2017 and was my focus during my summer break from college, I lost 2 stone and managed to increase the physical activities my body could do. I started by joining my local gym, planning out weekly meal prep and getting involved in as much activity as I could, when I first started out I wasn't capable of much and my athleticism was pretty low but its something I've worked on.
Exercise: during the mornings I would walk my dog for a good hour and a half, sometimes two hours and that would set me up for the day. After I'd walked Dean I would get ready for the gym around 11am and do 30 minutes cardio either on the cross trainer, exercise bike or stair master, I would end my session with free weights working on my strength and a series of cool down stretches. I also used to go swimming pretty much every day for at least an hour but there were days I did two if not three hours of swimming purely out of enjoyment, this would always tire me out for the day and I'd take it easy when I was done. One important thing I want to mention though was I DID take rest days, by all means exercise as often as you are comfortable but please listen to your body and rest it when it isn't happy, I have worked through many injuries and illnesses and I never won the battle.
Diet: It was around this time I'd gone vegan so I was switching up my eating anyway; I'm not too proud to say my diet used to be a shocking mash up of alcohol, pizza and fried chicken. Instead of eating take away's and processed foods I started hitting the kitchen more making healthy home made meals like vegetable pasta bakes, jacket potato and salad with hummus, fruit salads and couscous bowls. Doing this helped a lot with my energy levels which inevitably helped my gym process so it was all one big cycle! I still allowed myself to eat foods I enjoyed such as vegan chocolate and a few crisps now and again because no diet should be restricting to the point where you miss a certain food, a healthy diet is about balance NOT restriction. By giving myself a balance I reduced the number of "binges" I went on which kept me on track both physically and mentally, it's really important to take care of yourself when you diet and exercise.
 Targets: one reason people may give up a goal is if the goal itself hugely out ways the time, effort and capability of the person achieving it; and for this reason I set myself small, regular goals instead of large, long term goals. This isn't the same for everyone of course, there are people who can plan a whole year in advance but I'm very self critical and the few times I've missed a goal that I've "hyped up" to myself I've beaten myself up for it for days. So I would set myself weekly goals like "make sure I exercise 4 days this week" or "lose 2 pounds by two weeks" - this way I even left room for over-achieving those targets and it put me in a fantastic mood!
So there you have it; three aspects I put into practise at the start of my fitness and health journey and the aspects I still go by to this day as my journey is far from over. Thank you all for reading and hopefully see you all again with a new post soon!


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