In his second of three guest posts on the site, Peter Brown – Transformation Specialist has some practical tips on the how of getting in good shape for your big trip. As I prepare to head to China and Africa, I’m certainly appreciating his advice and support as I look to shed a few more pounds and get in hiking shape for my Great Wall adventure.
But enough from me, I’ll leave you in the capable hands of Pete.
How to Get Fit for your Next Trip
In last week’s article, “10 Reasons to be in Good Shape before Traveling”, Chris and I collaborated to give you our insights and opinions from our travels experiences as to why fitness should be considered before traveling.
In this article I intend to simplify the sheer amount of conflicting information available about getting fit and summarise ‘how to get fit for travel’ into three easy steps.
Set the End Date and Determine the Goal
Knowing how much time you have is important; this one is easy because your travel date will be your end date. This end date now gives you one half of the destination for your health and fitness journey.
The other half of that destination is the goal; by the end date you will have achieved what?
For example: by the 12/09/2015 I will have lost 5kg
Make the goal realistic and preferably ease to achieve, the easier it is to achieve for you, the more likely you will be to achieve it.
An easy way to know if your goal is achievable is to look at the time-frame you have.
For a weight loss goal you would aim to only lose between .1 and .5 kg of body weight per week.
Any more than that and you will have to deprive yourself and work pretty hard, Let’s be realistic: chances are as soon as you go away you’ll binge and put it all back on.
Make the Decision and ask yourself “Why?”
This might sound a little obvious to you but this is probably the most important step, more important than knowing what to eat and how much exercise to do.
When trying to lose weight or get fit the majority of people go in halfheartedly and don’t have a strong grasp on why they are even trying to achieve their goal in the first place.
Typically these people might set a goal because they think it will make them feel better by achieving it.
However, the process of achieving that result tends to become more overwhelming and uncomfortable than how they felt before setting out to achieve their goal; resulting in the person settling for less than they set out to achieve.
To avoid this you need to create a strong emotional reason behind ‘why’ you want to achieve that goal.
It might be because you know by losing that weight you will be able to go sky diving, climb the Eiffel Tower, feel more comfortable sight-seeing and get around easier, or feel more confident in your favourite outfit.
There is no right or wrong reasons for wanting to achieve your goal and there can never be too many reasons ‘why’.
Don’t go Crazy, be realistic!
The last step to take toward getting fit for your next trip is creating a realistic plan for success.
Most people will embark on a crazy 6-7 day per week exercise schedule and drastically cut calories, carbs, and other food groups in an attempt to lose weight or get fit.
The others won’t even try to lose weight or get fit because they think the aforementioned measures are what it takes to get into shape.
You can see how both scenarios are rather extreme, that is our nature as humans. We either throw ourselves completely into something or we don’t do it at all.
The key to long term success is to find the middle ground.
To find that middle ground you need to apply what I spoke about earlier in point number one about setting an achievable goal to the changes you make.
By making small changes you will achieve those small changes which will make you feel good about yourself and every time you make another small change you will feel even better about yourself and those small changes will add up into larger changes.
For example, you might already know your whole diet can do with a make-over but instead of trying to change everything at once you just focus on eating a better breakfast for a whole week.
The following week you might turn your attention to your mid-morning snack. Then lunch the week after so on and so forth. It will take less time to achieve those small changes and you will have created a massive change to your entire diet.
The same can be applied to exercise. Week one you might only complete one 15 minute workout, week two you might do two. As the weeks go by you turn your focus to increasing the length of time you spend working out or the intensity of the workout and before you know it you have yourself another well-formed habit of regularly exercising.
Small changes are key to permanent success; achieving small goals successfully turn into bigger and better goals.
The truth is most people will achieve remarkable changes in body shape, energy levels, and health by employing a moderate approach.
For more on how to structure a moderate approach to your health and fitness you can sign up to my Free Fat Loss eCourse.
Over six days you will receive an email each day outlining the areas that influence fat loss and practical tips on how to start achieving results for yourself.
To sign up simply click here.
Do you have some helpful tips on how to get fit before you hit the road?