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Help! I want to get fit, but don’t know how!

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Good News Everyone! I know to how to get fit!

I’ll simplify getting fit, down to 5 basic steps. Note, I did not say easy steps. If getting fit was easy, we’d all be in immaculate condition. It takes determination, willpower and a lot of sweat.
First things first, research just recently showed, that the method by which we lose the majority of our extra weight, is via respiration, or breathing. When you break down fat, you’re breaking it into forms of glucose to burn for energy.  Using that energy, creates CO2. So in order for you to lose weight, you gotta MOVE. Get your heart rate up! Re-teach your body what it was meant for! Adaptive survival! Whatever you throw at your body, it will learn to adapt and survive. If you want to be faster, keep moving faster, and you will be. You want to be stronger? Keep trying to lift heavy things, and you will get stronger! Now, enough of this motivational stuff, on with the list!

Important Side Note: If you EVER experience pain while exercising, consult with a doctor. You may be at risk for a moderate-serious injury. It is best to see one AS SOON AS POSSIBLE. The longer you wait, the longer the recovery time is.

 5. MOVE MORE! (I kinda feel like I just said that…)

If you want to get in better shape, more fit, feel better and/or look better, this requires more movement then you’re doing right now. (Which is easy to say, because you’re reading an article online if you were really moving at a good rate of speed, you’d not be able to read this page.)

When I say movement, I don’t necessarily mean walking, jogging, running. I mean do whatever you feel inclined or inspired to do. Want to learn Krav Maga? Go do it. Ariel Silk/Trapeze routines? Great! Competitive Tap Dance? Awesome! Any kind of movement, period. The only criteria is that you should be tired and sore when you’re done.

The human body is amazing adaptable and capable well beyond out normal means of movement.

(That video used to be on a “People are Awesome” page, but it had since been removed.  I kept it for movement based inspiration, hence why its now on my account and is not monetized.  I hold no rights to it nor did I create it, but simply find it amazing.  Don’t a lot of those activities until you’re a trained professional with thousands of hours of expertise.)

4. Start small, but not too small.

Clearly, we don’t all have the ability, or self esteem to immediately run out and do something we’ve never done. If you can’t do a pull up, you probably shouldn’t go join an Advanced Synchronized Pull-up Class. There are basics to everyday fitness that you should be able to do, before you really get active, to dramatically reduce your likelihood of getting injured. The idea is to start with the most basic movement which is still difficult. Here are some suggestions:

4-A) Basic Body Weight Squat!

Put your arms out in front of you, and squat down like a small child.   Your torso should be upright, your thighs should be straight, heels should be in contact with the ground and your knees should not move past the front of your toes. At the bottom, your butt should be 1-2” from the ground.
Most people fail at this, because we sit in chairs FAR too often. The best way to get better, is to keep trying. (see a theme here?)   If there is no pain in performing that squat movement, then sit down into the squat, until your muscles are screaming at you. Then sit normally and relax. Keep repeating this a couple times a day, for a week or two. This will force your muscles to stretch and adapt to the given position. (They should normally be able to do this, anyway)

4-B) Push Ups!

Lots of people can’t do a proper push up. That’s fine. It requires a significant amount of strength to do, and if you don’t have an active job… you might not use your chest/shoulder muscles, hardly ever. How should you do it? Start inclined! If you can’t do a push up on the floor, start on a sturdy chair (with your body leaning at 60-ish° . If that’s too hard, lean against a wall. Do as many push-ups as it takes to completely exhaust yourself. You want to get to the point where you can’t do another. Rest for 1-2 minutes. Then do as many as you can again. Rest for 1-2 minutes, and then do as many as you can again!

Pro-Tip: Start on a higher incline, then do a lower incline, then back to the higher incline. Slowly force your body to adapt to the harsher requirement, slowly over time, to achieve the best results!

4-C) Forward Planks!

A forward plank, is a push-up that doesn’t move. The hardest part of this is being sure you’re chest is dropped down a bit, shoulders are rolled back, abs are tight, glutes are tight and feet are together. You should be straight… like a board…or a plank. The “gold standard” is holding this position for 2 minutes straight. If you can’t, start with 10 seconds, 12 times. Work your way up to that. This will absolutely wreck your anterior abdominals.


4-D) Side Planks!


Sit on your side, elbow under your shoulder, hips on the ground, knees and ankles stacked, one on top of the other. You’re going to use the oblique abdominals to lift your body, and hold it there. This is a plank, on its side. Still very straight. Again, hold for 2 minutes. If you can’t, break it into pieces. 10s, 12x


Those are the basics. There are more, but I can list those in another article. That is enough to get you started on moving well.

A side notes here:

Once you’ve completed your reps for each exercise (how many times you did it) and your sets (each full bout of reps), you’re done forever!

Just kidding! You’re going to do that again, every other day, for months. Try a steeper incline/more weight with less reps, or a higher incline/less weight with more reps. The point is, you want to vary things up every 3-4 weeks so that your body does get used to the same routine. The body LOVES routine, and will accommodate for it. Avoid that!  Getting fit is like “grinding” or “farming” in gaming terms.  You’re going to be doing a lot of the same actions, on a regular routine, in order to increase personal attributes.  Without regular exposure to whatever routine you’re choosing to get fit, you won’t get the results you’re looking for.

3) Have a Workout Buddy!

Getting fit can be boring (and potentially dangerous depending on what you’re doing) but even more than that, you want someone who will make you accountable. Your buddy should be someone who will drag you from your couch, kicking and screaming, to get you moving again. The reason this works so well, is they can motivate you, when you aren’t motivating yourself, and vice versa.


The body is meant to hold weight and move in certain ways. Fitness is about moving well, and moving frequently.  If you’re moving improperly, it will not only be harder than it should be, but it’ll also lead to premature joint damage. Excessive joint damage can be permanent. Proper form is the fundamental foundation of all movement. Do it right, and you’ll avoid injuries, not just while exercising but you’ll be less likely to avoid injury later in life as well.

It just so happens, that the internet has useful resources for proper form, and your workout buddy can help you maintain that proper form. If you don’t have a buddy, do your best to maintain good form, or use a mirror to check yourself.

1) Eat WELL

If you’re goal is to lose weight and feel better, this step should be paramount. If you’re reading this, and live in America, it’s VERY likely that you have clean running water available at a tap, 24/7. You have electricity in your home, available 24/7. And you have clean air, also available 24/7. The only hazardous chemicals your body gets exposed to (unless you work with nasty chemicals and willfully ignore PPE protocols), is the food you eat.  If you’re on the track to become fit, this is the step that can ruin everything.  If you work out excessively, you can still be very unhealthy because of what you’re eating. You might look good on the outside, and the inside is failing one biochemical step at a time.

What is eating well? No fast food. No refined sugars. No sauces. (Dry herbs only!) No carbonated beverages. No artificial…anything. If you didn’t make the food, you aren’t going to eat it. It’s best to remove bread and most dairy, completely. Why? They are very pro-inflammatory. They aid in you feeling worse, swelling more, and make your body generally hate life (chemically speaking).

The body runs on glucose. It can, however, make glucose from damn near anything we eat. So stop stuffing your face with tons of sugar, and let it burn some fat that you’ve accumulated. You don’t need to store energy from last Thanksgiving! I promise you, you’ll get more food THIS Thanksgiving. Let your body burn that as storage as nice clean fuel.

The less sugar you consume, the more sugar your body will have to make. So eat LOTS, (I mean like, excessive) amounts of veggies. Fresh, farmer’s market veggies. If you don’t have a farmer’s market nearby… find one. If you live in an area without them, then buy things in the produce section at your local grocer. If you don’t know how to make anything with veggies… experiment! Dark leafy greens, root vegetables (grown underground) are best. Pumpkin Pie is NOT a vegetable.

Special News Report! Bacon has always been bad for you!

You want to eat lean meats. Good quality steak, turkey, chicken and sparing pork. Pigs are sneaky and hide bad fats in with good meat. Cows and chickens aren’t that sneaky and can be trusted. Chicken wings are not a good quality meat; there is far too much bad quality broiler fat in those. If you’re cooking, use olive oil or coconut oil. If you’re making a protein shake, add 1tbsp of olive oil or MCT oil (Medium Chain Triglyceride). Both of those fats won’t even be noticeable in the drink, will make you feel better between meals, as well as promote burning of even more fat.

Lastly, stop gorging yourself. Reduce your portions. You can eat 3x a day. It’s OK for your stomach to growl. You won’t die… its totally normal.

In closing…

So that’s it. That’s the whole list. There are MANY more steps that can be included, and even more examples of good workouts (A good workout consists of a lot more than 4 exercises), but this should get you started on your road to a happier, healthier you.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me. If you experience any pain during any of these activities, contact my office and get scheduled to resolve that pain.  If you have further questions, contact me for a consultation to better explain or determine what your specific needs are.



Disclaimer: This page is for educational purposes only. Dr. Herrington does not 
guarantee results, recommend specific treatments, or suggest any specific courses 
of care without personally assessing each case. Please consult your doctor for a 
proper exam, diagnosis and a treatment plan to address your problems. If you do not 
have a doctor, Dr. Herrington is always accepting new patients.
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