tagHow ToLet's Get Fit

Let's Get Fit



If there is one thing everyone wants, it's a healthy, physically fit body. We see beautiful people on television or in commercials and we want to be them. Obesity is an epidemic all around the world and healthy changes are an immensely popular topic for media. On websites, one can find 100 articles with tips and hints to lose weight. There are television shows like Biggest Loser where the audience watching thinks, "I want to do that, too."

You can. If you continue reading and follow the directions set in front of you, three months from now, you'll feel better about yourself, you'll fit in the old clothes still in your closet, you'll sleep better, you'll feel physically healthier, and people will notice. Maybe your sex life will pick up or you'll make other changes that will make you happy. Try, for three months, to do the below. I promise if you work at it, you'll lose weight and feel better about your life.

There are a few rules that must be explained first.

1.Being fit is not easy to start, but as you get used to it, it becomes easy. You need to change your habits and form new ones. But these new ones will become second nature, ensuring a better level of fitness and keeping that last five pounds continually at bay. This is going to be work, people. There's no easy way to do it or we'd all be incredibly attractive and capable of running marathons.

2.Forget the word "Diet." Diet is simply the food you eat. Right now, you are on a diet. It may compromise of unhealthy fast foods and cakes and pies and such. "Diet" is simply what you eat. On that note, when you eat healthy, that does not mean you're going to be hungry all the time. Eating healthy food is not starving, either.

3.Try. That's it. Just try, keep trying, and don't quit. If you go four days eating healthy and you go nuts on the fifth day, eating everything in sight, that's okay. It happens. You just forgive yourself and continue on doing your best.

Saying that, let's get to some basic ground rules of how to be healthy. Good health and a fit body require two elements: Diet and Exercise. Remember what we said about diet. Don't freak out over that word, it's not a bad word. So you don't panic, we'll start with Exercise.


•Shitty – Exercise doesn't mean killing yourself. There is a television commercial on right now for yogurt that shows two women passed out on a park bench, aching. They spent four hours in pilates so they could have some cake. You don't need to do that to eat food. Exercise can be fun, EASY, and very rewarding.

Let's discuss the easiest, simplest, best exercise in the world: Walking. Walking is a great exercise and it's what our bodies are designed to do. Walking burns fat, strengthens your heart and lungs, tones muscles, and generally makes you feel good. Walking 1 mile will take less then 20 minutes, burns over 100 calories, and keeps you off the couch and away from the television. It will reduce blood pressure and can help decrease the effects of Type II Diabetes. Walking can be done with your dog (who will love you), a friend, your family, your spouse, or by yourself. It's free. Put on some shoes and go outside and walk a little bit. Your body will thank you. You won't need a fancy gym membership or an expensive piece of equipment that stores dust in your house. All you need are a pair of shoes and some clothes you don't mind sweating in a little bit. Walking is ideal for those of us who are tremendously overweight and those of us who can't seem to get rid of that last five pounds. Walk!

We won't worry about the rest of it, the weights, the pushups, swimming laps, or anything else for right now. We're going to focus on walking, jogging if you can, and start to slowly build some endurance and drop some pounds. Speaking of dropping pounds, a healthy diet is the second, and more important, part of weight loss.


•Starving – You'll eat food and plenty of it. Maybe not as much as you do now, but you won't be hungry all the time.

•Disgusting – You can take some fruit, some veggies, and some other ingredients and make a dinner to rival any fast food restaurant. Golden Corral and Burger King can't compete with dinners cooked at home.

•Expensive – Healthy food costs as much or less then processed, manufactured meals. A homemade pizza, with store–bought pizza sauce, crust, cheese, onions and green peppers will cost less to make then buying French Bread Pizza. And it tastes better because you made it.

All food has calories. Calories are a unit of energy. If you use that energy, you burn off calories. If you don't, they get stored as fat. The fat is really fuel, waiting around for you to walk it off. If you get moving, it'll disappear.

Some foods have more calories then others. A twinkie, for example, has many times the number of calories contained in an apple. They're both about the same size, take about the same number of bites to eat, and cost about the same, depending on where you shop.

Yet you may have to walk several miles to burn off a twinkie, while a quick lap around your neighborhood will burn off an apple. The lesson here is it is not the amount of food you eat as much as it is the quality of food. An entire four course dinner, done correctly, can give you pounds of food and have the same calories as two big wedges of cake.

Food is a cornerstone of all societies. Dates are conducted with dinner. Family gatherings, weddings, funerals, movies... pretty much all social events have food available. We're a society of eaters. Hunger is terrible and we need to fix it at the slightest hint of onset. Unfortunately, vending machines don't serve carrots. What you should practice is eating healthier foods. Try lean meats, like chicken, pork, and fish. Eat a lot of fruits and veggies and whole grain breads and pastas. Take your lunch to work and pack it with all sorts of food. It'll save you calories and money.

"I've listened to you blather on about this stuff. Where are you going with it?"

Good question. This is how you lose weight. A pound of body fat has a value of about 3,500 calories. If you take all the calories you eat in one day and subtract all the calories you burn in one day, you get net calories. We want to have negative net calories every day, if possible. It is not always possible, but the overall trend should have a big negative sign next to it. Weight loss is simple math. Eat 2000 calories, burn more then 2000.

This is what you're going to do!

1.Keep a food journal and write down everything, food or drink, that goes into your mouth. Look at labels or use internet resources to find out how many calories are in the item you're eating. Round up if it's uncertain. Physically write down everything and tally it up at the end of the day. This will help you keep track of what you're eating and how often you're doing it.

2.Go to the library or a bookstore and get a cookbook. Plan five meals for each week, get a shopping list, and buy only those items. Don't buy cookies or ice cream, it's not on the list. Yes, you can eat junk food, but when you're at the supermarket, do not purchase those items. Treats should be bought when you're full, after dinner.

3.Walk, every day if possible. Google.com has a wonderful tool that you can use called a pedometer. Search pedometer and find your home town. Using the tracking tool, you can see distances, elevation changes, calories burned, and other useful facts. Make a two mile route and go for a walk. Depending on how quick you move, it may take 30 minutes or more. But there's no rush. Going fast or slow doesn't affect the calories burned. Distance does. More distance equals more calories, no matter how fast or slow you go. Keep track of the distances and calories burned. And as two miles gets easier, try to go longer. 3 or 4 miles is very impressive.

4.You don't need to add the positives and negatives but you do need to make sure most days you are in the red for calories. Do it often enough and you'll drop five pounds, ten pounds, twenty pounds.

It's math time. Every person has a basal metabolic rate (BMR). This is the number of calories a person burns by functioning. If you lie on a bed all day, your BMR will be around 1800 calories. A normal day of functioning averages 2000 to 2200 calories. If you keep a journal and eat 2200 calories a day, all the walking you do is fat melting off your body. Say you walk 2 miles a day, five times a week. If you walk 2 miles, five times a week and burn about 250 calories per walk, you'll burn 1250 a week. Every three week, you lose a pound of pure fat.

That may not seem like much. But your body will build some muscle. Muscle uses more calories then fat does, so your metabolism and your BMR increase. If you're used to eating a lot of food every day, your BMR may already be much higher then 2000. The weight will start coming off slowly at first but losing the weight and getting stronger will increase the rate at which you burn calories. Maybe you'll start walking twice a day. Maybe you'll pick up jogging or a sport. The opportunities are endless but you have to take the first steps and get outside.

After three months of this, I promise you'll be healthier and in better shape. So, as soon as you finish reading this, go on Google.com, find the pedometer, plot a 2 mile route, and get out there. As soon as you start moving, you'll be happier.

There is so much information available on weight loss. What has been presented barely scratches the surface of knowledge from available resources. Eat healthy, start walking, and a thinner body awaits!


I am always open for comments and suggestions. Please feel free to contact me with questions, concerns, insults, or other communication.

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