If you are reading this I would guess you’ve at least thought about getting fit. That thought itself may be enough to break you out in a sweat. You haven’t exercised in years. If at all. And you’re worried about the amount of effort it’s going to take to get you where you want to be. Fear not. Here’s a guide to getting fit by doing the least amount of exercise possible.
To tell you a bit about me first. There’s 2 things I used to know very well. Laziness and how to smoke tons of weed. I have written another post where I talk about the personal development books that helped me change my life. Books that helped me kick a 20 plus year marijuana habit, stop being lazy, and finally start living the life I want to. Books that helped me change my thinking and outlook on life. https://potheadtoprovidence.com/2019/04/24/the-top-3-personal-development-books-that-drastically-changed-my-life/
But I couldn’t improve my mind without also improving my body. The two go hand in hand.
The reason why I am writing this guide is because I heard something today that made me angry. I know someone who has decided to get fit. I don’t know how much they have ever exercised. If at all. They’ve joined a gym and got a personal trainer. A personal trainer that has them scheduled in for 5 consecutive days training at 40 minutes per session.
I have no experience of this other than what I have read and what I have learned that works through practical application. But I do know this. That person is doomed to fail unless they have a very strong motivating purpose and a will of Iron. Which, if they are only starting to exercise now after years of inactivity, is highly doubtful.
Thing is. It’s not their fault. It’s their trainer’s fault. A trainer who, not only is getting paid for his terrible service and advice, runs the risk of ruining this opportunity the person has to get fit by putting them off before they have properly begun.
Today was their 3rd day. They didn’t go. They were too sore from the previous days training. The future does not look bright.
So here it is. The simple secrets that took me from someone who hadn’t exercised since my teenage years. Someone who hated exercise (and still does by the way). To someone who now works out almost daily, at least every 2nd day, for 45 minutes to an hour. I’m not going to be running any marathons soon. Not going to be entering any CrossFit competitions. But I’m fitter and stronger than I ever was and will only get better.
It’s not a quick remedy. Not an instant cure to your laziness. But it’s the easiest way to get yourself to the level of fitness you want. You don’t even have to join a gym or get a personal trainer.
Step 1 Change Your Clothes
This seems stupid, right? What does changing your clothes matter? Well, it matters a lot. My advice to anyone who casually wears trainers on a day-to-day basis. Stop. You’ve made them a source of comfort. You’ve associated them with doing what you do on a daily basis. Which I’m guessing if you’ve read this far doesn’t involve any exercise. I’ll explain more about this later.
Step 2 Make your training area as easy as possible to get to
Look, you don’t have to go to the gym. I’m sure there’s somewhere in your house that would have enough space. Maybe you have a little shed. Maybe you have good enough weather that you can even do what you need outside. The point is, the quicker you can get to where you are going to exercise the more likely you are to get there. You’re not going to be put off by the amount of time and effort it’s going to take before you can begin doing what you really want to do.
Step 3 Set a schedule
Ok, you need some sort of schedule. Find what days and what time of day suits you best. You only need to set aside a maximum of 5 minutes of your day. If that’s too much do even less. You can start with as many days of the week you want to although from my experience you don’t want to do anymore than 3. That’s a maximum of 15 minutes in one week. I’m sure you can manage that quite easily.
Step 4 Do as little as possible and don’t break a sweat!
So, you’re all geared up, ready to begin. What exercise should you do? Frankly, do what you want! If you fancy a bit of running on the spot, some push-ups, sit-ups. If you have weights you can use those. There’s a host of exercises to choose from. Pick the exercise that you find, if not enjoyable, then the least taxing. You’ll know what you are capable off to begin with. Just make sure to go easy on yourself.
For example: If you’re in a bad way fitness wise and it’s a struggle to get up from your seat. Then do that. Put a chair where you want to exercise and keep sitting and getting up again. The important thing is to go as easy as possible. If you even feel a bead of sweat gathering on your forehead, or anywhere else for that matter, just stop. That’s it. You’re done. Session over.
Step 5 Repeat Steps 1 to 4 for months
That’s right. That’s all you have to do. That’s as easy as it gets. Just keep sticking to your schedule for as many months as it takes for it to become really comfortable. Until it becomes a solid, regular thing in your life. Something you don’t really think about when you go to do it.
It is after these few months that the real magic begins to happen.
You see all this time you haven’t really been exercising that much. You might not have seen any real improvement in your level of fitness. Maybe a little tiny bit but not what you imagined when you first thought about getting fit. It might not seem that you have done or achieved very much. But you have. You’ve done the most important thing of all. You’ve created the habit of exercising.
“Repetition of the same thought or physical action develops into a habit which, when repeated frequently enough, becomes an automatic reflex.” Norman Vincent Peale
The reason I talked about changing your clothes and not wearing trainers on a daily basis is because now when you do that you will have programmed your mind that you are going to do some exercise. The second those clothes and trainers are put on your mind automatically assumes you are now going to exercise. The innate drive to then get exercising will compel you onwards. I can’t put my trainers on now without having to exercise. The impulse is too great. It will eat away at my mind until I do so. That is the power of habit and association.
“When it comes to health and well-being, regular exercise is about as close to a magic potion as you can get.” – Thich Nhat Hanh (Buddhist monk)
Once that habit has been established you can judge for yourself how far you want to push yourself on with your training sessions. Just keep gradually increasing the difficulty and you’ll find your fitness increasing with it. Now you are free to sweat as much as you want.
For me it was simply about adding a few repetitions with my weights. Then, over time, a few more. Then I added another exercise to my routine. Gradually, over the course of a year, my session has went from not even a few minutes to almost an hour. If I had started trying to push myself as hard as I do now at the beginning I would have quit on that exercise a long time ago. Now I know I will never stop.
So there you have it. The laziest guide to fitness. It doesn’t take much other than time. It’s not an instant fix but it will set you up for life so what’s the hurry. There’s not much to it. So what are you waiting for. Go get that level of fitness you deserve.