Women’s Fitness Week: Have a road map for success

This is the fourth in a four-part series on women’s fitness tips. I have spoken with trainers and female athletes to come up with today’s list of motivational tips.

Motivation is one of the biggest factors women need to be fit for life. Trainers stress that women’s bodies take different strategies to stay fit than men’s, primarily in that women gain, store and burn fat in different ways.
Women in general have less muscle than men and unfortunately lose it faster by comparison as they age. That makes it harder to keep fat under control.
With that in mind, women need to tweak their workouts to adjust for the differences.
After a good warm-up of 5-10 minutes, trainers advise that women mix in several cardio workouts in intervals, such as several sets of strength training followed by 3-5 minutes on the exercise bike, back to strength training and then onto a treadmill for another interval of cardio.
Another big key is to break up meals into 5-6 per day, of course following healthy eating tips discussed earlier this week on this blog.

If you have had trouble getting or staying fit in the past, one final topic for this week is about motivation.
It’s extremely important to set goals, so that you’re not just aimlessly traveling through a workout program. You wouldn’t go on a vacation road trip with no road map, so why would you work out without any clear goals?
Research on your own, consult a trainer and/or plan out goals you want to attain.
It may be an extremely common one, like a target weight loss. Or set a more unique objective, such as being able to walk the 20-mile public trail near your house or complete a 5K run.
Maybe it’s to fit into the jeans that you used to look so good in 5-10 years ago.
Whatever your goal, write it down and then set out to meet it. Set one major goal, or come up with multiple small goals. Small goals can add up to great things in the end.
Know that there can be some setbacks along the way, but if you keep on the right track you should eventually get to where you want to go. And you’ll be a lot more healthy for it.

At Home Fitness consultant Aaron Dorksen’s blog deals with a variety of fitness topics, ranging from workout tips, motivational ideas and feature stories on how exercise impacts people’s lives. E-mail him with comments, questions or ideas for future blogs at aaron@athomefitness.com