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When we start to work out many people look at magazines and TV to see an image of how they would like to look.

Sometimes these images are realistic, but more often than not they are of a different ages and body type from the one we actually have.

This means that we walk into the gym, training class etc with almost unachievable goals from the outset. Then we train like mad in an effort to achieve those goals in the shortest time possible. We often carry injuries from previous things we have done and then try and ignore them hoping the new regime will fix all the previous damage.

At no point in this process are we dealing with reality and the now.

There is nothing wrong with wanting a better body or to be in better shape, however it would be more sensible to view the process as a marathon and not a sprint. This means you have to deal with the body you have a not the one you want from the start. If you have any injuries then pick exercises and classes that allow you to work without aggravating them further. If you keep working an old injury how do you expect it to heal? In time, if the injuries heal the you can change the exercise or up the pace if you want.

If you have to look to the media for inspiration then try to be realistic as to the models you are trying to emulate. Be realistic in your choices as anything else just leads to disappointment.

If you have been sedentary for a while try gentle cardiovascular or strength building exercise at the start and work up as time goes on. You’ll be amazed at how your body responds if you treat it properly.

If you want to do daily exercise then start off small 5/10 mins a day and make it achievable. Then over time you can increase the amount or intensity. If you build a routine and keep to it, then adding to it becomes easier. Too much too soon is a hard path that can very quickly seem too much to maintain. When that happens all the good intentions in the world won’t keep you exercising.

Pace yourself and try to bring exercise into your life slowly a piece at a time. That way the shock won’t be too much and you will probably carry on, you might even achieve your goals and surpass them.

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