A pyramid is defined as a monumental structure with a square or triangular base and sloping sides that meet at a point at the top e.g. one built of stone as a royal tomb in ancient Egypt. They built them with a wide base to ensure an even distribution of weight and a stable structure, so it is no wonder that Maslow chose the triangle/pyramid shape to illustrate the basis of his Hierarchy of Needs, with the base of it all being your basic PHYSIOLOGICAL needs.
So taking into consideration your ‘basic needs when you consider, or develop further, any kind of exercise or fitness regime, there are few things to think about. In my opinion the very first step, after making the decision to change, is your GOAL because without this you have nothing to base your decisions on. Your goal will define the what, when, where and with who questions that you will need to answer
So whether your goal is to run the London marathon, have a better quality of life or to ‘define your abs’, using Maslow’s idea of our basic needs, the following are points that you might want to think about …
- WHY/WHAT: What is your goal? Why are you doing this? Your first goal is that you want to make the change or develop your current regime further. Now think about what your ultimate goal is, make it achievable and remain focussed on it. In any fitness/exercise programme there will be down days but if you keep your ‘eyes on the prize’ it really does help. Whatever you decide to do, it is important that you make sure you are ‘medically able’ to cope with the kind of regime you want to do.
- WHERE: would you prefer a large/small Gym, an exercise class, working on your own or a one to one with a personal trainer? Do you want to go somewhere where no one will know you?
- WHEN: How often can you exercise and at what time of the day? This can be a vital part of your plan so think carefully about it. Think safety as well.
- WHO: Do you want to ‘go on your own’ or perhaps with a friend? Several people I spoke to like working out with someone as they feel it keeps them focussed.
- HOW: think about the kind of ‘regime’ you will need to do to achieve your goal, perhaps swimming is a better idea than they Gym, or power walking instead of running.
These may seem very simple steps but each of them will influence your ‘basic needs’ that will in turn influence your ultimate goal. I asked a few people who are at various stages of ‘fitness’ what are the most important things they needed to keep ‘going’.
- Good professional advice and well maintained equipment
- Good sportswear: that ‘washes well’, that ‘looks good’, ‘that I feel comfortable in’ and in particular good ‘support’ wear. Ladies, go get measured for the sports bra, don’t guess!
- The correct footwear
- Water! (This was mentioned more than sports drinks)
- Diet and having it checked regularly.
- A good night’s sleep and rest
- Tunes that work with the exercise or moves!
- “No cute guys, helps me focus better”
- “Air con that works”
- “Glittery eye shadow” “My fave lippy” “Good deodorant”
But by far the most important thing was motivation, to most of the people I spoke to, if they did not have the motivation the ‘pyramid’ would crumble. So if your goal is to get into a pair of skinny jeans, lift a heavier weight, look good in a bikini or just delay that heart attack, fix your goal, get the basics right, make sure those needs are all ticked off and go get ‘em!
Any questions you might have or advice, please leave your comment below or on Gin or Gym Facebook page!