Physical health and fitness are important for everyone. It helps you look and feel better, have more energy, avoid illnesses and heal faster. For men, being physically healthy and fit supports reproductive health and can help to reduce the risk of prostate cancer. Also, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), maintaining a healthy weight helps men to reduce the likelihood of developing type 2 diabetes.
In addition, regular exercise can help to improve mental health and reduce stress levels. Men who are physically healthy and fit are also more likely to be able to enjoy an active lifestyle as they age. So, whatever your age, it’s never too late to start making your physical health and fitness a priority.
Luckily, you don’t have to be a fitness model or professional athlete to have a chiseled physique and rock-hard abs. You can lose fat, build muscle, and get the body you’ve always wanted with the right workout plan. Here’s what you need to know—the basics and the workout.
The basic principles of weight loss still apply even though fad diets and workout programs seem to come and go on a monthly basis. According to a study published in the journal Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases, aerobic physical activity directly contributes to weight loss and maintenance. So basically, to lose fat and keep it off, you need to create a calorie deficit by eating fewer calories than you burn.
When it comes to building muscle, you need to eat enough calories to support your training while also getting enough protein to help your muscles recover and grow. Examples of food you can try while working out are:
- Fruits and vegetables such as bananas, apples, berries, dark leafy greens, and tomatoes
- Whole grains such as oatmeal, quinoa, brown rice, and whole wheat bread
- Protein-rich foods such as chicken, fish, tofu, eggs, and legumes
- Healthy fats such as nuts, nut butters, avocados, and olive oil
In terms of drinks, water is always the best choice. However, if you’re working out intensely, you may consider adding a sports drink to your diet to help replenish electrolytes.
Now that you know what to eat, it’s time to focus on how to work out. You should consider having a personal coach to help you reach your fitness goals. They can help you create a workout routine tailored to your body and fitness goals. This will ensure that your activities have a purpose and are directly targeted toward your physical health vision. They can also find a workout routine that fits into your schedule to make sure that you’re consistently working out and not skipping days.
With that said, there are certain workouts and exercises that are more effective than others when it comes to losing fat and building muscle. The following workout is an ideal routine for men who want to do just that.
This workout consists of four different exercises that should be performed for three sets of eight repetitions each. The goal is to choose a weight that allows you to complete all eight reps but is challenging enough that the last couple is difficult.
Exercise 1: Squat
Start with your feet shoulder-width apart and your hands behind your head. Lower your body until your thighs are parallel with the floor, then drive back up through your heels to the starting position.
Exercise 2: Bench Press
Lie on top of a flat bench with your feet flat on the floor and a dumbbell in each of your hands held at arm’s length over your chest. Slowly set the dumbbells lower until they’re at the level of your chest, then press them back up until your arms are extended fully overhead.
Exercise 3: Bent-over Row
Bend at the hips until your upper body is parallel with the floor, then row a dumbbell up toward your chest, keeping your elbow close to your side. Lower the dumbbell back down under control until your arm is extended fully, then repeat.
Exercise 4: Cardio
In addition to resistance training, cardiovascular exercise is an important component of any workout routine, particularly if weight loss is one of your goals. For best results, perform 30 minutes of moderate-intensity cardio (think walking or light jogging) on most days of the week. If 30 minutes seems like too much, start with 15 minutes and gradually increase as tolerated.
By following this workout routine and making smart food choices, you can lose fat, build muscle, and finally get the physique you’ve always wanted. With this comprehensive guide to getting fit, you’re sure to see results in no time!