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Fitness gurus share their best advice for beginners

Based out of Dallas, Texas, Mary McCoy is a writer and social worker for disenfranchised women and children. She's a single mom, lover of Texas barbecue, and a die-hard fan of yoga

Key workout tips to start a lifelong love of exercise

As with most lofty goals, the first step toward personal fitness is usually the hardest.

It makes perfect sense. No one particularly enjoys feeling like a novice or amateur. Moreover, when it comes to life as a fitness beginner, all those jogs, snatches, leaps and stretches can leave your muscles fatigued and your body defeated. That is, unless you have the right motivation and the right exercises to get your body over those first rough spots on the path to health.

The right motivation, surprisingly, is in the words of fitness gurus who are willing to remember what it was like to get started. Here, they share their insight into motivation during those arduous first steps as a fitness beginner. They're no different from anyone else with fitness goals — these particular athletes just happen to be a little farther down the road than most.

Take time to fall in love

Runner Rosa Del Toro believes beginners should approach their routines like a slow-growing relationship. Maybe you won't have a whirlwind romance with running, and that's OK. "It's not easy," she says. "It takes time to fall in love with it, but you'll see so many improvements as long as you're willing to dedicate yourself to it. At the end of the day, you feel great about what you did."

Learn more about what drives Del Toro to meet her goals.

Embrace the energy

If you've ever had a job that was pure drudgery, then you know how difficult it is to get up in the morning and suffer through the workday. Top trainer Natalie Uhling says the same thing can happen if you select a workout that doesn't resonate with your passion. She says fitness beginners should pick their favorite workout and embrace it — no matter what it is — to reach their fitness goals. "Love what you do!" Uhling exclaims. "When you love what you do, your whole life changes. Energy is everything!"

Find out more about Uhling's tips for fitness.

Have patience, and enjoy

Elite runner Emma Coburn wants to tell beginners a trade secret: Running can be hard for everyone. "When we get our two- to three-week break at end of season and then come back from that break, we’re out of shape and tired," Coburn explains. "We feel heavy, and we’re breathing hard, and it feels so miserable." While that might not sound particularly motivating, Coburn adds that the trick is to just continue pressing on at a slow pace and require that you finish out your set for a particular amount of time. "Just be patient in the day-to-day training — if you get out the door and you feel horrible, just slow your pace, or walk for a few minutes." See? Even the gurus need to walk every now and then.

Get more motivation from Coburn's inspiring running routine.

This post was brought to you by Dick's Sporting Goods.

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