10 Essential Beginner Tips For Getting Started With a Fitness Routine

Quick tips that will help you build a long-lasting routine!

By: Lexy Parsons

If you want to build a fitness routine but find yourself feeling overwhelmed, intimidated, or unsure of where to start, you’re in the right place. Starting any new routine can feel like a challenge, especially when it comes to fitness. It requires physical stamina, mental motivation, and possibly even significant changes to your current lifestyle and routine. That said, don’t let these challenges limit or discourage you! Remember that even positive change can bring discomfort. We’ve all been there. But, with the right guidance, you can overcome these hurdles and embark on a rewarding fitness journey. Read on for all you need to know, including essential beginner tips to help you get started.

10 Must-Have Beginner Tips for Building a Sustainable Fitness Routine

#1 Set Clear and Realistic Goals

One of the most important steps in starting a fitness routine is defining your “why” and setting clear and realistic goals. What is your driving force? Do you want to improve your blood sugar and cholesterol levels? Do you want to support weight loss in an attainable and sustainable way? Are you looking to boost energy and alleviate stress?

Rather than aim for drastic overnight change, focus on achievable milestones. Whether it’s improving your health metrics, dropping a pant size, or gaining the strength and stamina to lift heavier in the gym, having defined goals will keep you motivated and on track.

RELATED: Trying to Lose Weight? Here’s Why Defining Your “Why” is Key

#2 Embrace The Beginner Stages

By this, we mean start slow, and gradually increase the intensity! While it’s tempting to challenge yourself and pick up heavier weights, run longer distances, or dive headfirst into a tough workout, this can (quickly) lead to burnout or injury. Enjoy these beginning stages! Rather than a HIIT workout, consider starting with low-impact exercises. Or, rather than challenging your weight, stick with bodyweight exercises and focus on perfecting your form. When you feel confident, gradually increase the intensity.

To get started, browse the FitOn For You section. From walking workouts and yoga, to Tai Chi and basic bodyweight strength training sessions, there’s something for everyone.

#3 Invest in Basic Workout Equipment

To support your fitness journey, consider investing in a few fitness staples. Nothing expensive or extensive, a simple set of resistance bands and a pair of light dumbbells will do the trick! Our FitOn Strength Kit has everything you need to get started, and can make a significant difference in helping to build strength and lean muscle from the comfort of your own home.

#4 Perfect Your Form and Technique

We said it before, but this is your time to embrace the basics! Before you get started with your workouts, first, take time to perfect your form and technique for exercises. Improper form can lead to injuries and hinder progress. Plus, it’s easier to learn the proper form from the get-go rather than try to correct bad habits later on.

RELATED: 5 Must-Learn Strength Moves For Beginners

#5 Create a Consistent Schedule

Consistency is key to building a sustainable fitness routine. And, our body likes routine! While the initial steps can feel challenging, once you gain momentum, sticking with your schedule will be easier than you think. Start by designing a workout schedule that fits your lifestyle and stick to it. Whether it’s early morning workouts or evening sessions, find a time that works best for you and make it a non-negotiable part of your day.

#6 Find a Fitness Community

Joining a community of like-minded people, like the FitOn community, can help provide support, accountability, and even some friendly competition. If you’re looking for more structure, consider joining one of our Fitness Challenges! With various workout types and times (ranging from a week to even a month), you can find what feels best for you.

RELATED: FitOn’s 14-Day Motivation Challenge

#7 Mix Up Your Routine

Once you feel confident with your form, consider trying out different types of exercise! Not only is this a great way to see what feels most aligned for you, your body, and your goals, but it’s also a great way to improve your overall fitness and address your various needs. For example, strength and resistance can help boost your metabolism and support lean muscle mass, weekly cardio sessions (such as walking) can help support heart health and mental health, and flexibility and mobility training can prevent injury. Browse the FitOn App for all your needs!

#8 Make Time for Active Recovery

When getting started with your fitness journey, it’s important to remember that rest days are crucial. This applies to any and all exercise regimes — regardless if you’re incorporating HIIT workouts and strength training or lower-intensity exercises such as Pilates and bodyweight workouts. Sprinkle one to two active recovery days into your regime, including activities like gentle yoga, stretching, or a leisurely walk. It can help prevent injury, boost performance, and allow your muscles to recover while maintaining your fitness momentum.

#9 Listen to Your Body & Adjust As Needed

While this is crucial for any fitness enthusiast, it’s particularly important to pay attention to how your body feels before, during, and after exercise when first starting out. It’s normal to feel sore after a workout or fatigued during an intense move, but if anything feels abnormal or painful, it’s a sign to stop and rest. Remember, small progress leads to long-lasting results. So, avoid going too hard too fast. Continue to check in with your body, allow time for recovery, and adjust or modify as needed.

#10 Celebrate Your Wins

Finally, don’t forget to acknowledge and celebrate your wins! Progress isn’t linear, and there are bound to be roadblocks along the way. However, no goal is too small to celebrate. Did you make it to the gym today? Were you able to squeeze in an extra set of reps or increase your weight? Did you increase your steps throughout the day? All of these accomplishments, no matter how big or small, are worthy of celebration! It can help keep you motivated and reinforce the positive impact of your fitness routine. Plus, it’s a great way to see how far you’ve come from day one. 

RELATED: 9 Signs You’re Making Progress + Why Celebrating Small Wins is Essential 

The Takeaway

Starting a fitness routine can feel daunting, but with the right approach and mindset, it can become a rewarding part of your routine. In fact, what once felt like a chore might even become the best part of your day! Remember to start slowly, listen to your body, and include various types of exercises to balance your regime. Most importantly, enjoy the journey, stay consistent, and don’t forget to celebrate your achievements along the way. If you keep these simple beginner fitness tips in mind, you’ll set yourself up for success now, and for years to come.