As men, we are not so often encouraged to spend all that much time on our appearance. This is in part because of ideas around such practices being somehow effeminate, and partly a kind of generic social laziness towards the whole idea. However, such ideas are changing in front of us as we speak, and it is now more important than ever for men to really take care of themselves in whatever way they see fit. A big part of taking care of yourself is looking after your body, the temple of your mind. By taking care of your body, getting fit and looking your very best, you can hope to build confidence and ultimately lead a better life in a number of profound and varied ways. So let’s take a look at just some of the things you might want to do in order to ensure that you are getting fit and looking great in no time.
The first thing to look into altering is your diet, as it is the most important and largest factor influencing your appearance and your body’s health in general. As long as your diet is not good, you can’t expect your body to be its absolute best, and it doesn’t matter how much exercise you do if you are eating poorly – you simply can’t outrun a bad diet. So if you are guilty of thinking that you can have that pizza and beer night as long as you go for a jog in the morning, it’s important to know that you are kidding yourself there. You need to focus on developing the best diet you possibly can, so that your body is working and functioning as it should and that it is going to ultimately appear exactly as you want it to appear.
So what are some of the basics when it comes to your diet? Most of all, you should aim to eat an entirely whole food based diet, with no processed food at all. In practice, you might well slip up sometimes and eat some processed junk, but you should avoid it as much as possible if you want to care for your body. Such foods do nothing for you except help you pile on unnecessary pounds without even giving you much in the way of sustenance. Sugary and salty foods in particular, especially when they are processed, also make you want to just eat more food generally. Eating whole foods only, or at least primarily – whole foods being anything natural that has not been processed – will mean that your body has what it needs to function, and that it is much more likely to keep in shape and not become overweight.
Beyond that, you should also aim to eat a huge variety of plants, as that is the most important part of your plate. As long as you are, as the saying goes, ‘eating a rainbow’, you will find that you are probably getting all the nutrients and minerals that you need. When you do, you will find that your workout is more effective, your mood is better, your skin improves, your energy levels are raised, and many, many other benefits. It really is hugely important to have a mostly plant-based diet, with as few processed foods or animal products as possible. If you are thinking that you need animal products in order to have enough protein to have the muscle that you want, think again. You can easily build plenty of muscle without ever touching meat, as long as you focus on eating enough other sources of protein: many nuts, grains and legumes have the right amount of protein for those who are seeking the muscular frame men often want.
As you can see, diet is hugely important, but so is exercise, and you need to make sure that you are focused on this just as much if you want your body to look and be at its absolute best. In general, there are two main forms of exercise that as a man you will probably want to engage in: cardiovascular exercise, and weight-training exercise. The former is good for your actual health, in particular ensuring that your lungs operate properly, that your organs like your heart work as they should and that your body generally functions properly. Cardio also ensures that you are keeping fat off you body, which is important if you are hoping to look good as well as being healthy.
Weight-training, on the other hand, is for the sole purpose of gaining muscle, so that you can look and feel strong. There is no doubt that this kind of exercise makes most men feel more masculine and attractive, and the confidence boost you can experience from being muscular is worth it alone. In order to ensure that you are carrying out your cardio exercise properly, it can help to read up on the essentials of such exercise to make sure you are on the right path. You might even want to take a few personal training courses so that you can discover some of the lesser-known facts about exercising which can help you to make the most of it. Whatever you do, however, you should make sure that you are engaging in cardio exercise at least four times a week, but ideally more in the region of five or six. These sessions should be around forty minutes each, of course longer if you are able will be better too. That should be enough exercise – provided that the exercises is carried out properly – for your body to keep fat off and to ensure that you are giving it a chance to work as it should.
For muscle-building, it’s much more about getting to a place where you are happy with your body, which is just a matter of taste and nothing else. However, in general you should aim to do it three to four times a week, allowing plenty of time between sessions for rest – as that is when the muscle actually grows. Do all that, and you will find you are getting fit and looking great in no time.