You don’t have to have an on-call personal trainer to get an A-list workout. We asked Teddy Bass – the writer of the upcoming Affirm Fitness and the LA trainer in charge of Cameron’s killer physics – to share his best strategies for sticking to your goals and getting the most out of your workouts.

(Customize your own walking plan with Walk Your Way to Better Health and lose up to 5x more belly fat!)

1. Start your morning with meditation.

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Surprise: Bass’s number one training tip is to sit still. He notes that a few minutes of meditation each morning can help set the tone for the day so that you are more mindful of everything, including your exercise. “I’ve been doing this for 24 years and it’s the only thing that really makes a difference,” says Bass. (Try these 8 simple meditation techniques.)

2. Step away from social media.

away from social media

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It is easy to get involved in the comparison game, especially if you are following a number of “fitspo” accounts. And if you compare your own healthy progress to that of a competitive bodybuilder, for example, it is easy to get discouraged. “We have so much sabotage going on on social media,” says Bass. “Take a break so you can make it clear that you’re focusing on your goal, not someone else’s.” Bonus: If you’re not distracted by Facebook, you may have an extra 45 minutes to exercise today .

MORE: 3 ways Facebook could be playing with your head

3. Dig deeper for lasting motivation.

Dig deeper for lasting motivation.

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If it feels selfish to allow yourself an hour of “me time” each day, try redefining your motivation for exercising. For example, instead of aiming for a specific dress size, set yourself the goal of walking up the stairs of the local history museum without getting caught in your breath. “It’s so easy to put yourself in second place,” says Bass. “We have to prioritize and see what is important.” And yes, your health is pretty important – so put your workouts on the calendar and treat them like any other obligation.

Do you only have 10 minutes? Here’s a metabolism-boosting workout that you can do anywhere:

4. Don’t wing it.

don't wing it

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If you hit the gym without a clear idea of ​​what you want to achieve, you can end up socializing or walking around aimlessly. Your training plan doesn’t have to be fancy, but you do have to have one. Just choose a handful of exercises and do a few sets of each. “If you make a plan – ‘Today I’m going to do squats, lunges, chest presses, and biceps’ – then there are your exercises,” says Bass.

MORE: 9 Proven Ways To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat

5. If you only do one thing, do burpees.

Do burpees

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They probably aren’t your favorite thing in the world, but they work. “Three sets of 10 burpees will get your heart rate up and work out almost every muscle in your body,” says Bass. If you’re new to burpees, Bass recommends a modified version: just crouch down, step back into a plank, do push-ups, and stand up. Do as many reps as you can and work your way up as you get stronger. (Here’s a look at what can happen if you do burpees every day for two weeks.)

How to make the perfect burpee:

6. Do whatever you want.

do some cardio

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Yes, high-intensity interval training (HIIT) can be very effective at burning calories, but if you don’t enjoy it, you won’t stick with it. So, if you’d rather spend a few slow and steady miles on the treadmill, do so instead. Or take a spin class, go for a walk, or follow an exercise video on YouTube. “Customize your workouts so that it works for you,” says Bass. Assuming you’re not training for the Olympics, you don’t have to tweak every minute of every workout. Just find something you enjoy doing and keep doing it.

7. Don’t skip weight training.

Don't skip strength training

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“You’re not going to get huge, you’re going to develop toned muscles, increase your metabolism, and burn calories,” says Bass. (Here’s what 10 minutes of strength training a day can do for you.) If you don’t want to lift heavy weights, you can do bodyweight exercises (like pushups, squats, and lunges) and get similar benefits. Talk to a personal trainer – the most gyms will offer you a free session if you attend – or try a circuit for inspiration.

MORE: 10 best strength training exercises for women over 50

8. Record your progress.

log your training process

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As you begin a new exercise routine, journaling can help you track your progress and adjust to what is working and what is not. Haven’t you seen any improvement in weeks? You cannot reach your full potential. Do you often skip training because you are way too sore? Maybe you are overdoing it. Journaling can help you identify these problems before they become hard-to-break habits. “It comes back to mindfulness,” says Bass. “If you keep a diary, you will get a small check-in every day. You are responsible. ”(Make sure you don’t make these weight loss mistakes that could slow your progress.)


Kara Wahlgren is a New Jersey-based freelance writer specializing in health, entertainment, and personal finance.

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