The summer months are a great time to get outside and be adventurous. If you’re out of shape, however, you might find yourself shying away from certain activities. Maybe you’re self-conscious about your body in a swimsuit or doubt your ability to hike that trail. It’s time to stop holding yourself back.
Let the carefree energy and warmer weather provide the boost you need to step outside of your comfort zone. You may not be ready to compete in the Tour de France but that doesn’t mean you should stay on the sidelines. If you’re feeling intimidated but are ready to get moving, here are some tips for embracing an active lifestyle at any size.
Take it Slow
As the saying goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day so, if your goal is to run a 5k race but you haven’t put on your sneakers in months, you might want to start with a walk around the block. Let your body get used to being active again and then gradually add to it. Use a fitness app to track your progress!
If you’re trying something completely new like kayaking, wall climbing, or even a yoga class, focus on mastering your form and technique before upping your intensity. We all want to feel like experts immediately but, to avoid injury, frustration or setbacks, take your time and just enjoy the journey.
Pick Something Fun
While it’s important to keep your body fit and healthy, it doesn’t have to feel like a chore. If you hate tennis, don’t play tennis. Instead, focus on things that you will look forward to doing. This will help you get through the tough moments when you feel physically challenged.
We happen to be in a time when there’s more variety than ever. Love music? Take a dance class. Enjoy getting down and dirty? Try an outdoor CrossFit lesson. Craving a thrill? Try skydiving! If you want to take a risk without spending a fortune, be sure to check sites such as Groupon for discounted rates.
Your body may not look the way you want, and you may not be able to run up a hill without stopping, but make a conscious decision to love the skin you’re in—always. Everything that has led up to this point has shaped who you are today. You’ve faced challenges and hurdles but you’re still pushing ahead. That’s an accomplishment in itself!
Instead of seeing the negative in the situation, focus on everything that’s right. Be proud of your efforts and, if anyone makes you feel judged, realize that this is a reflection on them and has nothing to do with you.
This summer, go out and do the things you’ve always dreamed of trying. Don’t let your weight or fitness level hold you back. You may not be where you want to be right away but you’ll never get there if you don’t try. Take your time, enjoy the journey and have fun!