By   February 5, 2011

Personal fitness does not have to be a drag. You can find great tips about how to make getting into shape something fun and not seem like some weird type of punishment. You are sure to find some useful information that will help you enjoy your fitness routine a bit more.

If you are looking to get more fit, find a friend that will make the commitment to get in shape with you. With someone on your side, you will be held accountable for accomplishing your fitness goals. You can keep each other motivated and try new work out classes together. Finally, a friend can motivate you when you start slacking off.

When you are running up hills, make sure to lean forward slightly, keep your head up and focus your eyes on the top of the hill. This helps to keep your airways open instead of closing them off as you would if you were hunched over. Keep your eyes on the goal ahead and you’ll clear it in no time.

Try not to exercise when you’re sick. When your body is sick, it’s going to be putting most of it resources to work making you healthy again. If you’re exercising your body won’t be able to put its full resources toward building muscle. Instead, you’ll be using up resources that could be fighting your sickness leaving you sick longer.

Motivation is necessary to diet successfully. Seeing and feeling the results of your efforts provides one type of motivation. Scales may not motivate you enough. Try on some clothes you used to be able to wear. You will be able to see every week how you are losing inches not just pounds.

If you are about to start a new fitness regime and have not exercised before or in a long time, or have a medical condition of some sort that might be exacerbated by exercise, it is a good idea to see your doctor before you begin a program. Getting a medical check up will help ensure that you choose the most beneficial exercise program for yourself.

Instead of just doing as many crunches as you can, try doing some sit ups in your routine. Sit ups work your entire core and give you a better range of motion to work out, while crunches and other abdominal workouts, only target your abdominal muscles and not your core.

Only train your abdominal muscles, two or three times a week. While these muscles do recover somewhat faster than your other muscles, they still need time to rest. Make an attempt to keep a strict schedule, such as working on them every other weekday and relaxing them on the weekends.

Sleep with your legs off the bed. If you run and need to increase the flexibility of your calf muscles, try sleeping on your stomach with your legs off the mattress. This may be uncomfortable at first, but gravity takes over and will lightly stretch your muscles for you all night.

With so many other exercises, you may forget to do sit ups. Sit ups help range of motion and have a positive effect on abdominal muscles, as they make your abs work longer and harder. Try to avoid anchoring you feet when doing sit ups– that can strain your back.

A great fitness tip is to make sure your home gym has a mirror. A lot of people forget about getting a mirror when they set up their home gym. Mirrors are crucial because they allow you to see your form when you’re lifting. Without them, you can get seriously injured.

A great fitness tip is to take time off if you pull a muscle. You’ll know if you pull a muscle when you’re lifting weights. When this happens you need to take some time off to recuperate. Applying ice generously to your pulled muscle will get you back in good condition.

You can work out and save money by doing chores like snow shoveling yourself rather than hiring a neighborhood kid to do it for you. Snow shoveling burns 400 calories an hour and is great power training, as well as saving a good $25/hour you’d have to pay someone.

To improve your fitness, get a workout partner. Once the burst of enthusiasm for a new fitness routine wanes, it is easy to find reasons to skip workouts. If someone else is expecting you to show up, though, you are more likely to follow through. So find a friend with a similar fitness level and buddy up.

Before starting any exercise or fitness programs, it is a good idea to see your physician for a full physical. Your doctor can make sure that you are in good enough health to start a high intensity training program without being in any danger of hurting yourself. Your doctor will also take weight and blood pressure measurements so that, later on, you will be able to look back and see the improvements you have made.

Stretching must be an essential element of any healthy exercise regimen. Stretching keeps you limber, active, and it also prevents injuries from occurring during your exercise routine. Perform sets of routine stretches to keep all parts of your body loose and ready for the challenge of flexible exercise. Make it a routine to stretch before you exercise.

Do at least twelve consistent minutes of cardio. Any amount of cardio exercise will burn the calories, but to really get the pounds off, your body needs at least twelve consistent minutes of moderate to high-intensity cardio beyond the warm-up. Try to do this most days of the week and it will pay off.

Find ways to make exercising fun. Exercise is important, but it can be difficult to continue if it feels like a chore. Vary your routine by running or walking a different route, joining a sports team, or using activities like gardening or dancing to work out. Making exercise interesting will make it an enjoyable habit.

Like it was said at the beginning of this article, fitness can be fun. Hopefully you have found the information in this article to be helpful to you. Fitness is an important part of life and the more fit you are the better you are going to feel and the longer you will feel good.