With the media constantly barraging women with images of the “perfect” body, it can be difficult to know what being fit actually means. Contrary to popular belief, being skinny and sculpted doesn’t equal being fit.
Being fit is a lot more than just looking sexy at the gym or in a bathing suit. You can look amazing and still be unhealthy. Being fit means that you have a body that is healthy and can endure the daily physical strains you put on it, like running a distance or picking up that big bag of mulch.
In questing for that “perfect” body, many women develop unhealthy–even dangerous–habits such as:
Restricting your intake of calories is not a healthy way to lose weight or get fit. Women who regularly under-eat often develop an obsession with food and losing weight, which can lead to an eating disorder. Will this food make me gain weight? What can I do to lose another pound or two?
Over-exercising can be just as dangerous as not exercising at all. Combined with under-eating, it can even make you gain weight as your body stows away any fat it can in a desperate attempt to get needed energy.
Not every woman can achieve that ideal sculpted fitness model body she sees in magazines. In fact, very few women do. Those who have the physical traits associated with the “ideal” female image are more often than not professionals who stay on a strict diet and exercise plan (or are just plain Photoshopped!). They are training their body to be lean, not to improve fitness and health.
A fit body is, at its core, a healthy body, and will look different from woman to woman. To get a fit, healthy body, take the following into consideration:
While BMI is generally a good measure of body fat, it does not distinguish between fat and lean body mass. So while you may be in the “unhealthy” range, it does not necessarily mean that you are overweight.
It is also important to not focus on weight so much. A majority of people don’t know what 140 pounds looks like thanks to media images. Instead, focus on eating healthy, balanced meals and implementing a healthy exercise routine.
A combination of endurance training and strength training allows you to get the most out of your workout by mixing things up. Focusing on the same routines over and over again will make exercising less effective. Improving your strength and endurance can also help you avoid injuries when exercising or merely going about your daily physical routines. Investing in home gym equipment is a good way to begin to get fit if you are uncomfortable with going to the gym and working out in front of other people.