Deciding to get healthier and fitter is something that millions of people do every day. Understanding a bit more about the progression of physical fitness helps people prepare for the challenges ahead. Here are five stages of physical fitness and the obstacles ahead.
The Pre-Contemplative Stage
This stage happens long before you sign up for exercise classes or join a fitness center. At this stage, you generally aren’t doing anything about your physical fitness. You feel comfortable about where you are, physically, and don’t feel the need to change your current habits.
The Contemplation Stage
At this stage, you’re more aware of your body and its limitations. For example, you notice you’re finding it harder to breathe when walking. You notice your clothes don’t fit as well as they used to. Or perhaps you just had your annual physical and you noticed the number on the scale. During the contemplation stage, you might start sayings things like, “Maybe I should lose a little weight,” or “Perhaps I should check out exercise classes in my area.”
The Preparation Stage
At this stage, you need to decide how to set realistic fitness goals and what you’re going to do to achieve them. At this point, you’re creating a plan for reaching your fitness goals. You begin to research exercise classes or speak with your doctor about what you need to do to get in better shape. During the preparation stage, you feel a combination of eagerness and anxiousness.
The Action Stage
This stage is often the hardest stage out of all five stages. The reason is that your mindset must shift from contemplation and preparation to doing. At this stage, you need to begin working out. You need to put those plans into action. You also need to have a way to stay motivated to continue with the stage. The action stage is the period during the physical fitness progression when relapse happens the most. How are you going to avoid relapse from happening?
Some of the best ways to do this include keeping your exercise training fresh and new. Try new classes each week, so you don’t get bored. If there are days when you can’t get a full 60-minute workout in, break it up into 15-minute intervals throughout the day. Work close with a personal trainer, schedule regular weigh-ins and measurement sessions, so that you see the progress, even if it’s a little at a time. Don’t under estimate the power of a cell phone camera. Pictures can speak 1000 words. Keep track of your progress with pictures.
The Maintenance Stage
Once you’re at this stage, you notice your clothes fit better. You notice that you don’t have as much difficulty maintaining your desire to workout. Your heart health is better, and you probably notice you have more energy and don’t experience as much mental fog. Once you hit the maintenance stage, you need to continue to actively make exercise a part of your life. To do this, contact Mountainside Fitness for exercise classes in Phoenix, AZ.