Sport and fitness has always been my passion, which culminated in a year out to study Sports and Exercise Medicine at college. I've enjoyed sharing this knowledge with friends and family, so when a couple of readers asked me where to begin with their exercise regime, I thought I'd kick off with this Sport Medicine series to correct some common myths.
It's my personal belief that a doctor's job isn't just to treat sick people, but also to keep you fit and healthy!
In this column, I'll share health and wellness tips from the Sport Medicine field, as well as address misconceptions about fitness and exercise, based on scientific evidence (and occasionally, anecdotal experience).
Myth: Keeping fit involves huge time commitment and effort.
Often it's the sheer inertia of changing a lifestyle that prevents people from even starting. It doesn't help matters if you believe that achieving your fitness goal requires a Victoria Secrets model lifestyle, where eating and exercise is concerned.
- I'm a firm believer in KISS - Keep It Simple, Stupid. The simpler something is to follow, the more likely you are to stick to it.
- As a primer - I never spend more than 40 min in the gym, unless I'm catching up with friends. (That's called socializing, which is perfectly okay too every now and then).
- I only hit the gym 2-3 x a week. Science has said the sweet spot to spend in the gym is probably about 30-40 minutes. Playing sport count too, so pick up something you enjoy today.
- Always pick compound exercises over isolation. A compound exercises works out many different muscle groups - more bang for buck!
- Diet wise, I get by on 2 meals a day, eating pretty much anything I want (minus carbs and fried stuff, more on that later). Breakfast is over-rated, nor do I subscribe to the notion of 5 smaller meals a day. As with exercise, the simpler your diet is to keep to, the better.
- I'm also a fan of intermittent fasting.
The most important first step is to overcome the mental barrier that it's difficult to get into "it", and you'll already be off to a great start where your fitness journey is concerned.