I find it funny how fear and fitness can be so closely intertwined. The fear of hurting yourself or not knowing what to do can quickly make a fitness challenge look impossible to accomplish. But knowledge is power, especially when it comes to your fitness journey. By being informed you are able to banish fear and self-doubt.
I had the opportunity to sit down and interview Krista in between classes at IdeaWorld 2015. She gave me some incredible advice on how to alleviate some of your fitness fears that I’d like to share with you all.
Fear #1: I don’t think I can go any further.
Listen and be honest. It’s important to listen to your body when working out and be honest with yourself. As Krista put it, our bodies can do it, but our mind isn’t quite sure. In fitness you’re constantly playing with the mind body connection, and it’s important to learn to distinguish between pain and discomfort. In her fitness instruction, her aim is be “pushing ourselves outside of our comfort zone” asking yourself “How do I challenge myself to go further? ” So if there isn’t a sharp pain, snap, or pop – don’t give up, push your mind and body to achieve more than you initially believed you could.
Fear #2: What if I don’t know what to do?
Empower yourself. For a fitness beginner going to a new exercise class can be incredibly scary. I constantly question if I’ll be able to keep up and have purposely avoided a group cardio class because I’m afraid my stamina is too low. Krista inspired me to shake off the self-doubt and empower my fitness class experience. She advises group class newbies to arrive early and ask the instructor to explain the format of the class. By doing this, you can inform the instructor where you might have difficulty and they can help you with an effective modification. “Don’t be fearful about being a beginner and some else is advanced. The fitness industry is really fantastic about teaching at all levels.” It’s important to remember fitness instructors are there to help you. If you don’t connect with the coach then take a different class, but don’t give up on yourself.
Fear #3: It’s the day after and I can’t move. Is this normal?
For those who are not very fit, soreness can be the ultimate excuse to go back to your sedentary lifestyle. But soreness is normal and Krista says you shouldn’t stop moving. The dull ache in your muscle is a response to the hard work you’ve been putting forth. The muscles will feel sore for 24 -48 hours post work out, but shouldn’t last longer than 5 days. On days of recovery low impact exercises like yoga or going for a long walk will help to keep the muscles limber. Krista also advises upping the water intake and getting extra hours of sleep to help the muscles repair and heal faster.
I loved discussing fitness with Krista Popowych and can see why she has won so many accolades for her work in the fitness world. She is a warm and encouraging fitness coach that knows how to banish fitness fears. If you don’t have your own fitness trainer and are exercising solo, I hope Krista’s advice has helped to shine some light on a few of your worries.
What is a fitness fear you had at the beginning of your journey? How did you overcome it?