If you were lucky enough to start a physical habit when you were young, you may want to do sports and be as hard or even harder as achieving your weight loss goal.

Advance into adulthood for 20 years or more, and the same problems can occur, regardless of your fitness goals. Fitness is tough and requires consistency. Good habits need to be formed, and bad habits need to be replaced to get optimal movement, nutrition, sleep and hydration.

The fight is real, but if you are aware of the journey and its obstacles, you will understand that disasters, plains, and setbacks are part of the process.

Early Teen Fitness

Maybe you’re aiming to form a sports team or you’re tired of being the thinnest kid in the neighborhood. Whether the goal is athletics, weight gain, or weight loss, first-time teens typically make rapid progress with performance.

For a young teenager who is focused on achieving goals that want to gain more muscle and do sports, start with the basics of calisthenics and dumbbell (or TRX) resistance training. If you want to do a sport that uses balls, practice speed and agility as well. If you want to take part in running, swimming or rowing, practice long-term endurance.

The combination of cardio options is perfect for teenagers who are focused on multi-sport goals if they are balanced during the week. You may have trouble adding training time between sports seasons, practices, and school.

It only takes 2-3 days of training a week to start this trip, especially if you are doing internships several times a week. The good news is that teen recovery is generally much faster, but if you’re not careful you can overdo it.

Many teens will stop focusing on sleep, nutrition, and hydration. If you want to gain weight, it requires you to eat much more food than you realize. You need 500 more calories a week to get close to gaining a pound.

You need to do some physical exercise, or weight gain won’t help you in athletics. You are not getting stronger, faster and bigger by increasing your activity. You won’t see any improvement if you don’t regain your growing age and avoid smoking and overtraining.

Teen Fitness for Weight Loss

Weight loss for teenagers is much easier than for adults. As adults we usually become “hard losers” and we are no longer in the “hard winner” phase, which is easy to gain weight, but difficult to lose weight.

Learning to eat healthier foods and consume less junk food and less sugar drinks should be part of this journey. Adding movement to your day will allow you to see tremendous results quickly. My advice is to replace all sugar drinks with water and start walking. As you lose weight, calisthenics and running will become easier; the next thing you know, you’ll be in the area you want to be.

Fitness Goals As we age

Habits that have helped you build a proper body in adolescence will help you throughout your life if you don’t create bad habits and replace exercise with a sedentary activity. That’s the mistake most people make.

People who were winners in their teens will continue to eat as much as they could to gain weight, achieve that goal, and continue to gain weight – they will be overweight when they are around 30 to 40 years old.

You need to learn to eat differently as you get older. You will see that you are no longer working on your poor diet. There is no reason to enjoy competitions in team sports, recreational leagues, and races (cycling, running, swimming, obstacle courses, etc.). They are all great activities that can give a reason to train an athlete with a goal in mind.

PT tests, executions, swimming times, and maintaining old personal weightlifting records can be classic fitness goals for many active and retired military personnel who maintain physical habit by age.

If you’ve spent a few decades in your family and career (quite common) and let your fitness expire, that’s fine. The answer is to start over and treat yourself as a beginner.

Unlike when you started training in adolescence, take steps and walk or bike and focus on calisthenics as a healthy way to start the journey.

The last thing you want to do is take out the old workouts you did in the first 20 years ago. This requires pain and injury and will lead to delays and failure.

If you need to move again, here are my top three suggestions:

1. Start with non-impact cardio activity. Your knees, hips, feet, back, and joints will thank you for not running early, especially if you are overweight.

2. Add endurance training to build your muscles. I like to do calisthenics first or lift dumbbells, then finish the workout with an impact-free cardio.

Not just diet and cardio. Adding resistance training through circuit workouts, calisthenics, or TRX exercises will be most helpful when you start losing weight and start improving your fitness.

3. Eat better. Limit extra sugar. Eat more raw fruits and vegetables for carbs and grilled or baked lean meats for protein (chicken, turkey, beef, fish). Avoid fried foods. Drink plenty of water. Move the sugar for best results.

Whoever you are, this can happen and you can start driving towards your health and seasonal goals.

The next thing you know, your confidence grows and new training and nutrition disciplines will expand into other areas of your life, including work, school, sports, family, and relationships.

Stew Smith is a former Army SEAL and fitness author, certified as a Strength and Adaptation Specialist (CSCS) with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Visit their Fitness eBook store if you want to start a workout program to create a healthy lifestyle. Send your fitness questions to stew@stewsmith.com.

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