Personal fitness involves more than looking good in a bathing suit. It has to do with improving your overall health and improving your life. For some people, it might mean making time to incorporate daily exercise. For others, it might be reducing cholesterol by changing food choices. Creating a personal fitness plan can help to achieve these important goals. Follow these steps.
Create a fitness record to keep track of your goals, personal fitness plan and progress. This could be a spiral notebook, a three-ring binder or a word document on your computer, cell phone or PDA. If it’s a notebook, choose a size that will fit in your purse, book bag or brief case, so that you can keep it with you throughout the day.
Set your fitness goals. These could include a healthier lifestyle, weight loss, firming up and gaining muscle or improving in a particular sport. Maybe you want to participate in a marathon or achieve a certain distance while running, biking or swimming. Set realistic goals and list these in your fitness record. Break these goals down into smaller stages. For instance, if your goal is to eat healthier, drinking eight glasses of water each day would be a smaller goal. Write the first goal and reward on a piece of paper and stick it on your refrigerator.
Determine what you are going to do to achieve your personal goal. Exercises should be at least 20 minutes for three times a week and include a warm up and stretching, strength and cardiovascular training and a cool down. Be creative and flexible with your time. Talk to your doctor before starting any new fitness program, especially if you are pregnant, post-partum or have a special medical condition.
Check your progress on a regular basis. Weight loss should be recorded once a week and doesn’t have to be determined through a scale. It can be determined by measurements. Note where you are in your monthly menstrual cycle, as weight can fluctuate several pounds within a month. Knowing when your heavier days are will explain any unrealistic weight gain. If your goal is improvement in a sport, progress would include a faster swimming lap or increased weight on the Bowflex. Write down progress in your fitness record.
Set rewards for achieving the different levels–both small and large–for your personal fitness plan. Smaller rewards could be a pair of earrings or a new CD. Larger rewards could be a new outfit.