What Should A Beginner Do During The Initial Phase Of An Exercise Program?

So you are finally ready to really take that plunge into an exercise program and stick with it. I am sure you have told yourself this numerous times before only to fail so this time you don't want to screw it up. Trust me we have been there so many times over the years.

The easiest thing to do is to keep everything simple as possible or the KISS affect.

beginner working out

So what should a beginner do when they first get started with a new exercise program? With a new exercise program you should do what the program says yes but don't make any crazy diet changes if you don't already do workouts. There are numerous reasons to this that include your body going into a state of hypometabolism. 

Why Working Out And Dieting In the Beginning Can Make You Gain Weight?

Now this doesn't happen to everybody but if it has happened to you in the past this may be why. The old rule is 80% healthy eating and 20% exercise is the key to living a long healthy life and this is still very true.

This will vary by what workout and diet you are doing to but overall take an easy on cutting back on calories when you are first working out until your body gets used to the rigors of your exercises.

What happens when you first start working out is that your body actually gets damaged from workouts like little micro tears in your muscles (which is 100% normal and a good thing) that will create inflammation and you will retain water. This is fine and gets better as your body adapts to your now active self.

The other issue is when you start a diet and start working out that usually entails reducing your caloric intake by a substantial amount. If you do this right away especially overtime your body may enter hypo metabolism. Hypometabolism is basically where your body is slowing its self down because you are starving it over a longer period of time. It is defending itself and trying to help you survive.

Back in the cave man days it was the same way bodies would shut themselves down for periods of time to be able to survive one a food source came along it would shift back on. You can go a very long time with just water due to this.

How To Make Sure You Are Losing Weight When You First Start A Program?

  • Water is your friend – yes drink lots of water our bodies are made mostly of this. So feed it so your body can operate at peak performance. Around 100 ounces is perfect for most not the old rule of 8 cups a day. You aren't going to drink too much and yes you make need to take more trips to the bathroom in the beginning but those are toxins and such coming out of your body.
  • If you have ever had a massage you know that they say to drink lots of water before and after this is because toxins are being release and
    An it will help with this inflammation.
  • Calorie Cutting – yes you need to take in less calories then you burn in order to lose weight. But if you cut back 1000 calories a day overtime your body's metabolism will slow down and you will burn less. Cut back 5-10% until you you stop losing weight then cut back that much more. Follow the nutrition guide of the workout just make sure you aren't cutting 1,000 calories a day.
  • Pushing The Limit – Make sure you are pushing to your limit in your workouts. Consult a physician, but make sure you are pushing yourself. Want to be absolutely sure you are? Get a heart rate monitor so you can see that you are. After a couple weeks push it past your limit just be safe. David Goggins who wrote an amazing book and an ex-seal states that when you get to your limit that is only 40% I do believe he is right. That is why it is very important to eventually push your limits.
  • Supplement – with a multivitamin or some kind of shake. Your body is going to be breaking down so make sure you are trying to build it back up with antioxidants and such. I like the gummy vitamins because then I don't have to eat and they seem to absorb better.
  • Proteins – take a protein shake or nutritional shake either as a snack or meal replacement. We still use Shakeology but go with what works best with your nutritional plan. If you are on keto make up a keto shake. Keep the fluids and protein coming in.


What Should I Do On The Off Days Of My Workout Program?

We get asked this a lot in the groups. Although it should be considered a rest day that doesn't mean don't be active. The biggest misconception is that you can do a 20 minute workout 5 days a week and get into the best shape of your life while doing nothing else.

This is dead wrong for most. If you work a desk job like I did in the past you need to get up and move whenever you can. That includes at a minimum walks in your break, walks on lunch, and a walk after work. Get out with your dogs, kids, goats, pigs….etc.

Trust me it is just about as important with the in between eating and working time then anything. If you work a desk job and go home and sit on the couch watching tv all night you are probably not going to feel good about yourself. Your body physically will be in a dormant stage and so will your metabolism.

I am not saying walk around for 5 hours at night after you have worked a 10 hour day in the office. Sitting down all day is tiring I know that and I suffered many consequences from it including two hernia surgeries and sciatica problems.

But try not to sit down longer then an hour or two at a time. Every 15-30 minutes would be great but in the beginning go for 2 hours. Get up put on some music do the most dreaded thing I have to deal with all day (cleaning house – actually burns a lot of calories). Or go out and throw the ball to your dog, go do some shopping, shoot some hoops, go to the park, etc.

Your off days you can do workouts like biking, walking, jogging most of the time as long as your body is on the same page. Listen to your body it will tell you.


Don't over think it when you are starting out. Just stick to the plan after the first couple weeks things will get easier. Try not to weigh yourself those first couple weeks if you are that concerned as well.

Whether you workout calls for 3 or 6-7 workouts a week just get in there press play and don't think about anything but the task at hand. If you miss a workout you have options either perform the missed workout or skip to the next one.

The reason you would skip to the next one is because if it is a day of the week workout program it makes it tougher than just moving forward. So for example lets say it was a 5 day a week workout Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays are weight workouts while Tuesdays & Thursdays are cardio. You miss a Wednesday weight workout which happens.

But you are also heading out of town for the weekend so pushing everything back a day just isn't going to happen so at least skip to the next workout to stay on track. Missing one workout isn't going to hinder your results that much.

Also I would stay away from trying to do two workouts a day in the beginning especially the first two weeks. Commit for two weeks to follow the program after you then make it through the third week it now becomes a habit and it is mostly downhill from there. Stay dedicated you can do this.



Tab Winner

We are fun loving family that lives on a small farm and tries to be healthy. We are not fitness fanatics we are just trying to keep things simple especially with how busy our lives are. We have a few horses, a few dogs, and a young daughter along with a big extended family. Follow us on our journey. I hope you enjoy the website. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us. Please check back for updates!

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