fitness girl starting a run

The start of a race for any athlete is by far the hardest. It will determine whether that athlete will win or lose the race. The launch from the “BANG” of the gun is critical and all coaches spend enormous time on those few milliseconds.

We in everyday fitness sometimes fail to appreciate the importance of training for the start.

When you begin a fitness program, you will be nervous, the fact that you are now in the “race” and you are taking the first steps to your start line “ON YOUR MARK”.  You know people are watching you; will you race? Will you finish? Will you win!  You have visualized the fitter you. You have understood that you have to work hard to make it happen and make it real.

You are ready “SET”, the time has come to clear your mind and focus solely on the start. You know what you must do, you can see the track and it’s yours to run! BANG! GO NOW! Explode out of the blocks, drive through with all your might and accelerate to the finish line! Triumph is yours!

Underestimating the importance of the right mind set in starting a fitness program often leads to disappointment and eventually abandoning of the program altogether. Being realistic about your own fitness and understanding that fitness, like mastering any skill, requires patience and progresses in stages helps you to persist.

Beware of the following traps that stop many beginners before they get to the finish line!

1. Doing too much too soon

Motivation and excitement at the beginning of a fitness program may seem explosive, as the hope for success is high and adrenaline is pumping, however this enthusiasm will drive you only in the short term. It is therefore important to learn how to reel in some of this excitement and go for a more steady state. Learn the basics of good exercising techniques and avoid injuries.

2. Ignoring recovery

Many beginners in fitness believe that they should get out there every day and train like mad, generally ignoring the importance of recovery on the body. The body, especially if it has not exercised for a while, needs the time to catch up to what the mind knows it can do. This may sound boring, however in the long term the body will surprise you if given time and consistent training.

3. Not having a goal or plan

The biggest killer to any fitness program is no direction – getting fit for the sake of fitness doesn’t make sense. A good goal, with a strong reason for the goal will keep any beginner from straying into the abyss of “what for!”  When you are feeling that you can’t go on, your goals will save you and let you know that you have the power to start and finish!




Best of luck on your start!