The Five Cs of Fitness
Ask any reporter for the key elements of a story and they will tell you about the Five W’s: who, what, when, where and why. Ask a jeweler about buying a diamond and you will learn the importance of the Four C’s: color, cut, clarity and carat. A realtor will stress the importance of the Three L’s: location, location and location. When a client asked me what are the watchwords for developing a lifelong exercise habit, the search to formulate a concise response began. The following Five C’s are submitted for your approval.
What are your goals? Where do you enjoy exercising? What do you hope to achieve? Are there activities or exercises that are contraindicated due to medical conditions or injuries? How much time are you willing to commit? At a minimum, you must communicate this to yourself by writing it all down. If you are working out at a gym or with a trainer, honest communication is essential to your success.
The creation of an environment conducive to achieving your fitness goals is an important building block of success. Create a pleasant workout space in your home or find a gym you feel comfortable in. Beyond the physical space, creating a network of people who will support your efforts is important. Spouses, friends, trainers, dietitians, eating support groups, and counselors can cheer your successes and pick you up when you fall.
Developing your goal can be compared to plotting your destination on a cross-country fitness road trip. The way to get from here to there involves a series of calculations: What road to take, what speed to travel, where to make overnight stops, how to handle detours. Having a complete fitness assessment prior to embarking on an exercise is similar to checking your car thoroughly before a long drive.
You do so much for others. Now is the time to enhance your physical and emotional well being. No phone calls, no faxes, no e-mail…no interruptions! Focus on yourself during each exercise session. To get maximum benefit, all exercises must be done with good biomechanics, proper breathing and mental focus. Outside of your planned workout sessions, concentrate on using good posture during activities of daily living. Practice mindful eating.
Enjoy the richness and diversity of exercises, sports, places to walk or bike and healthy foods. Find the exercises you like and the healthy foods you enjoy and make them a part of your life. Celebrate your fitness achievements as they happen: a belt loop here, a dress size there, a few more sit ups, a few less pounds, a compliment from a co-worker, a bag of potting soil easily lifted out of the car.
Now that you know the Five C’s of Fitness, it is time to get started. Do it now, or it will be 500 push-ups or a 500-word composition. I do not want any pretense, protest, prevarication, pridefulness or procrastination.
We all need fitness plans that work. No two people are alike. Follow the Five C plan: Establish your goals and Communicate them if necessary to your trainer. Create an exercise environment conducive to achieving your goals. Calculate your progress. Concentrate on what you are doing-no phone calls in between lunges. Celebrate your success.