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Your Fitness Plan

10 Questions that Will Help You Focus


Updated December 03, 2012

Having a fitness plan is one of the best ways to insure that you will get fit and stay fit. Most people, however, don't have a fitness plan. Their workouts are improvised around the rest of their lives. That works when life cooperates, but exercise is usually the first thing to go when life gets hectic -- exactly the time you want your fitness plan in place. Sound familiar?

Getting a basic fitness plan together is not hard. Below are 10 questions you can use to help you get clarity on your fitness plan. I've included lots of extra resources to help you put your plan together. This is a Pilates website, but I've mixed in plenty of other types of exercise as well. No matter what exercise you do, these questions will help you turn the lights on your fitness plan.

1. Do You Know What Kind of Exercise You Want to Do?

Exercise Ball
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Your plan won't be very focused if you don't settle one what you want to do, at least for a start. If you do know what kind of exercise you want to do, skip to question #2. On the other hand, if you are just getting into regular exercise, you might still be exploring. Here is a tip: The best exercise plans include moderate strength training, such as Pilates, and cardio.

What is Pilates
Weight Training Basics
What is Cardio?
Cardio Exericses

2. When Can You Schedule Your Workouts?

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Scheduling your workouts is one of the easiest and most effective ways to keep your fitness momentum. Look at your schedule and get a reality check on what you can do. That way you can get your goals in line with what's possible. Write your workouts into your schedule.

A Sample Strength and Cardio Training Program
Keep an Exercise Log
What is the Best Schedule for Pilates?
Reader Tips on Workout Schedules

3. Are You Going to the Studio or Gym?

It is important to be specific not just about when you are going to exercise but also where. If you are going to the Pilates studio or gym, for example, write it into your schedule and reserve your place in class. Now that you have your workout times blocked out in your calendar, you can reserve your time ahead. Commitment like that will help you keep your plan intact.

Pilates Classes for Beginners
How to Find Pilates Classes

4. Are You Going to Workout at Home?

If home workouts are part of your fitness vision for yourself -- and let's face it, most of us need to be workout out at home at least some of the time -- take a realistic look at how your household runs and plan the best times to workout at home.

Benefits of Pilates Home Workouts

5. Do You Have a Place to Workout at Home?

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The idea of working out at home will mostly stay just that, an idea, unless you have a place where you can comfortably workout. You don't necessarily need a whole room dedicated to fitness, but most people so best with a designated place they can count on.
Set Up Your Home Workout Space
Cardio at Home

6. Do You Have the Equipment You Need?

Don't let not having what you need get in the way of following through on your fitness plan. A lot can be done with nothing more than an exercise mat. If you need more, here are some tips on how to get it:
Pilates Equipment Buyers' Guide
Home Exercise Equipment Buyers' Guide

7. Do You Have the Clothes You Need?

Really, clothes are usually simple in the fitness world. Sweats and a tee, and maybe running or walking shoes and you can go most anywhere. That said, you can have a lot of fun with workout clothes and some situations (and egos) are clothing specific. Get real about what clothes you need and get them.
Workout Clothing Reviews
About Athletic Shoes
What to Wear for Pilates and Yoga

8. Who Do You Need to Get Support From?

Fitness Couple
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This is a big secret to exercise plan success: Let the people in your life know that fitness is a priority for you. If there are things to workout around scheduling, plan that with the others who are affected. Even if you don't have to do logistics with others, letting the people who are close to you in your life know that you would like their support is the first step to getting it. And having support from others is proven to help fitness plans succeed.

The About.com Pilates Forum
The About.com Exercise Forum
The Fitness Forum at Calorie Count
Family Fitness Plans

9. Do You Want to Lose Weight?

I know it seems unlikely, but not everyone wants or needs to lose weight. If that's you, skip to #10. For those who do want to lose weight, the focus of a fitness plan has to shift toward what it takes to drop pounds and stay healthy. In its simplest form, that means eating healthfully and exercising enough to help you burn more calories than you take in. Learn more about how that works in Pilates and a Fat Burning Workout Plan
Weight Loss with a Healthy Lifestyle
How Pilates Supports Weight Loss
Weight Loss at About.com

10. How Committed to Your Plan are You?

Now this is the real deal maker/breaker isn't it? Most of us have very good intentions when we make our fitness plans, but sometimes they are a little too mental and what we need is the full-body motivation that comes from getting our passion for our goals involved. Rate your commitment on a scale of 1 - 10. If you are below a 7, take a look at these articles: The Top Benefits of Pilates
Top Health Benefits of Exercise

Congratulations on taking a very big step toward making your fitness plans a reality.

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