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How to become more physically fit

Updated on May 25, 2013

Whatever your reasons for wanting to become more physically fit, becoming more athletic comes with huge benefits for not only your body but, more importantly, your mind. This article will show you the ways in which you can become more physically fit in a matter of weeks. Results may vary depending on your current levels of fitness and your willingness to stick to certain aspects of the workout. The workouts shown are aimed at being not to difficult and able to fit into a normal schedule. There are many different exercises mentioned because some viewers may not choose to do particular methods.

Firstly, before you get into a workout, motivation is key. Envisage the range of mental and physical benefits. Exercise helps you become more mentally aware and focused and is actually the most important aspect of fitness. The average person will think that they have completely normal levels of concentration, but studies prove that those who are physically fit have a clearer mind and are able to focus more easily. This not only helps especially well during exams and learning, but also in day to day situations, whether it's remembering what a friend had asked you to do or being able to make the right on-the-spot decisions. Exercise also helps to keep your body more balanced so that you are not affected by sudden moods or spikes in hormones.

Physically, exercise tones your body so that not only do you look great but you find more difficult tasks a lot easier and simple, being able to use a wider range of muscles. Those who are physically fit are generally less suscepible to illnesses because their body is kept in good condition and they have the energy to cope with problems. Being toned also allows your confidence to grow, which is immediately recognisable when meeting new people and getting people to listen to your views.

Now onto the routine. There are many different sports and workouts below. You should choose at least four of these if you are wanting to shape up and stay in good form. Try not to choose the easiest ones as you are only cheating yourself. That said, there are no exercises listed below that do not durastically improve your fitness.


Many people around the world enjoy the benefits of swimming everyday. You will find an oppurtunity to swim almost anywhere, whether its in a sea, lake or local leisure centre. Swimming gives a wide variety of muscles a workout, whilst putting minimal pressure on joints. Lots of patients recovering from surgery or accidents swim so that they can redevelop their muscles again, without damaging their joints. It may not feel like you are doing much when swimming, but you can actually work up quite a sweat and burn many calories. For example, swimming at two miles an hour for an hour, burns almost 900 calories! Don't think because your joints aren't aching and you aren't sweating enough, that you aren't having a good workout.

Running / Jogging

I'm sure, as many of you will have predicted (and feared), jogging is high up on the list of activities. You don't have to run even close to flat out to really burn those calories and improve your fitness. Running is renowned as one of the sports that releases the most endorphins in your brain which creates that feeling of satisfaction and happiness after you have completed a workout. Running helps you slim down very fast because it causes your body to get rid of excess fats all over your body, because believe it or not, you are moving almost every muscle in your body when running causing blood to flow to all parts of the body. The beauty of running is that if you try a fair amount, no matter how slow you are going, you will be burning roughly the same amount of calories as you progress which is around 900/1,000 an hour. This may sound confusing, but when you first start out running, you are running at a slower rate than if you were fitter, but if you are running at 80% effort you are burning the same amount of energy as someone fitter who is running at 80%, because its all body mass ratios and more. Running is a key aspect of fitness and well-being for many athletes around the world.

Weight Lifting

This is not a key aspect of becoming fit, but really helps tone your body. If you have a set of weights at home or use the gym, then this is a feasible form of exercise. For example, I have neither weights or use the gym, but I use two identical slabs of stone from my garden decoration. Before I breifly mention a few weight lifting exercises, I don't hesitate to mention that always make sure that you are not lifting too much weight, that you are not close to the maximum you can lift, that you have ample protection in place so that if you drop the weights, you will not damage yourself or others around you, because this can obviously have disastrous effects. By protection, an example would be having a capable 'spotter' when bench pressing or have a stand to catch any weights below you so that if you drop a weight, it will not fall on your foot or worse.

Below are only a few workout routines for weight lifting, but I find them the most effective. First of all is the standard bicep curl, this is where you have a weight in each hand and lift it up by raising your forearms to your biceps (with your palms up). I love this one because they produce the quickest and most notable affects on your arms.

Next is a triceps workout. Place only one weight in both your hands, with your fingers on the bottom and your thumb nails staring at you. Then carefully and safely raise the weight above and behind your head. Then only you cannot lower the weight behind your head any further, try repetatively lifting the weight back upwards (until you reach head height). This works out your triceps which are the muscles on the back of your arms.

Last of all is an abdominal / back (lats) workout. The plank, which you may have heard of is a very basic but effective routine. Adopt the position that you would in order to do a push up / press up, next place your hands together, with your forearms against the floor underneath your head. Then maintain this position for as long as you feel nessassary. It may not sound hard but you can quickly feel the burn. If you are not feeling any workout from doing this, then you are probably doing it wrong. Check out the picture on the right to see the positioning.


My favourite sport of all, squash! If you are uncertain as to what this is, the basics are that you are in a cubic room where you hit the ball against the front wall and then you opponent has to do the same. The ball is only allowed to bounce once or the receiver loses. If want to see further instructions, check out the rules on Google.

If you are familiar with the sport, you may know that it is a very calorific sport. The average straight game of squash for an hour burns 1,000 calories. This is because there is so much running about and lunging about the court, although it doesn't feel like you are doing much because you are in a small room and you are hopefully enjoying the game and focusing on winning. I have found this to be the most enjoyable of all the racket sports that I have tried and is a growing sport that you will most probably find in your local leisure centre.

Tennis / Badminton

Although I mentioned that I prefer squash to these two games, I still find these rackets sports to be fun and competitive. Tennis is a well established sport and shouldn't be difficult at all to find the facilities to play. The requirements for both the games are very low, being a racket and balls/shuttlecocks, assuming you have a court to play on. I will not go into how to play these games as I am sure you already know or you can search the rules on how to play.

Tennis the more physically demanding of the two sports, mainly due to the obvious difference in size of courts. Both sports exercise mainly your arms and legs rather than abdominals and other muscles, but as will all sports, as long as you do a substantial amount, you are giving yourself a full body work out (with a few exceptions). The average calorie burn for tennis is 700kcal per hour as apposed to badminton with 600-650kcal per hour.


Now we come onto the last sport of this article, rock-climbing. Although this is a more exclusive activity than most other sports, it is an equally, if not more thrilling, form of exercise. Even if you have a mild fear of heights, you can give this a go at your local climbing-wall. Check online to find your nearest venue for rockclimbing, it should not be as far as most think.

Rockclimbing really does use every muscle in your body and is a very exciting sport as adrenaline helps you to scale the trickier routes. This is because you have to uses all of your strength to lift your body up the wall. I have found that this sport really did use all my muscles when I tried rockclimbing the day after I had been working out, throughout my arms, chest, back and legs, I could feel the strain. A friend of mine who is more adept at climbing to say the least, is able to lift himself up the wall by lifting his entire body weight with one hand at a time, without much other exercise. I would thoroughly recommend this activity, and don't give up on it after your first session when you probably learn to climb a fairly boring wall, because when you get to the more complex wall it becomes much more thrilling.

Sorry to end on a boring note, but I reiterate that it important and nessassary that you make sure that you have taken all of the appropriate safety requirements and precautions before you go out and practise any of these sports / workouts

Thanks for reading! Please feel free to leave comments or suggestions in the box below, it is always nice to hear from readers to feel like your work is being noticed. Thanks again and I wish you all the best with your future health and fitness!

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    • Larry Rankin profile image

      Larry Rankin 2 years ago from Oklahoma

      Great tips!

    • profile image

      Fejiro Agaro 3 years ago

      This was an unusual thing for me because I am only 11

    • profile image

      Anthony Melchior 5 years ago

      Thank you very much for your suggestions. Wishing you & your friends success with sports & improved health of body & mind. Thanks

      - Anthony Melchior.

    • Tamarii2 profile image

      Tamarii2 6 years ago from NEW YORK

      Enjoyed Reading this hub.Thank you for following.Enjoy your journey.

    • john.jackson profile image

      john.jackson 6 years ago from London, England

      Unfortunately, even though I have a few close friends who play karate to a professional level, my knowledge of the sport is fairly limited. I am aware that it is a very good workout, but I don't want to lower the quality of this article. Thanks you for your feedback! and maybe if you would like to make a hub about martial arts, I would be more than happy to link to it!

    • Moon Willow Lake profile image

      Moon Willow Lake 6 years ago

      Thanks for mentioning badminton. I really enjoy it. Something else people can try is martial arts training. There are many types including low-impact that still provides for a good workout.