Tips to Prepare for Your Program

Tips to <em>Prepare</em> for Your Program

With less than 2 months until we start 2022, there's never been a better time to realign your priorities, get focused on your goals, and commit to finishing the year strong.

Once you've secured your place in your program, you can download the Move With Us App from the App Store or Google Play and begin your journey straight away.

Once you've logged in you'll be prompted to complete your initial questionnaire, where you'll fill in your personal information including dietary preferences, measurements and starting photos (which is completely optional if you'd like to track your physical progress), and set your goals for the program.

Picking the right goal for you

We understand that everyone's fitness journey looks different to them. We want to help you get clear on the pathway to achieving your goal, and support you every step along the way.

When completing your questionnaire, one of the first questions we ask is to pick your goal for the program. You can change this at any time in your app settings under 'Update My Macros'. Here's a breakdown of each goal:

Fat Loss 

The Fat Loss goal is perfect if your primary aim is to lose weight and drop body fat. To achieve this goal, we will place you in a moderate calorie deficit, meaning you will be burning more energy than you're consuming.
 
Please note that this goal is not the best for you if you want to increase your lean muscle mass significantly.

Both

This goal will place you in a mild calorie deficit, at slightly higher calories than you would be given for Fat Loss. This is aimed at achieving steady fat loss while preserving as much lean muscle as possible.

While your muscle mass is unlikely to increase dramatically on this goal, you will be able to sculpt and shape your physique and create muscle definition through a combination of training and nutrition.

This goal is also a perfect transition point between Fat Loss and Muscle Gain.

Muscle Gain

If you select Muscle Gain as your goal, you will be placed in a mild calorie surplus - meaning you will consume slightly more calories than you burn.

We will work with you over your program to achieve an optimal surplus, to provide you with the necessary fuel for muscle growth.

When in a surplus, please note that your measurements and weight are very likely to increase slightly, but this is all part of the process!


If you're unsure about what goal is right for you, please reach out to our Team at info@movewithus.com for more support. 

Planning your meals in advance 

If this is your first program, we recommend taking some time to familiarise yourself with the MWU App and follow the guided tutorial to navigate through your nutrition, training, and mindset features. 

After completing your questionnaire, please allow up to 24 hours for your personalised Meal Guides and nutrition targets to appear in your app.

Prior to starting your program, make sure you set aside some time to go through your Meal Guide and customise the meals to suit your preferences. You can swap, rearrange, remove, and add new meals from the Recipe Library, as well as search or manually add for your own foods too. 

If you're new to tracking and want to make following a nutrition plan as easy as possible for yourself, we recommend sticking to the same Meal Guide for a week at a time.

Keeping consistency across your meals makes it much easier to grocery shop and cook for the week ahead, and not have to spend too much time thinking about what to eat each day.

Once you've put together your perfect day of eating in the MWU App, you have the choice to either save the changes to the one selected day only, or to all future days ahead.

The changes you make in your Meal Guide will automatically update in your Shopping List, where you'll find your current day plus next 6 days of food listed with the exact quantities needed. You can also add in any extra items you need to your Shopping List.

If you're not sure what food brands to go for, we've put together a nutrition cheat sheet to help you shop for the items within your Meal Guide. Comparing the overall calories of your foods is the most important aspect, then aiming to closely meet the protein target, while you can be more flexible with carbs and fats.

Prior to starting your program, we do recommend purchasing a food scale so you can measure your ingredients and ensure you're being as accurate as possible to your nutrition targets. There's no specific brand of scales we recommend, any digital kitchen scales available to you will do the trick.

Another common question we receive is if we recommend any supplements for your journey. All supplements are completely optional and are not necessary for everyone! The only fitness supplement you may come across in your Meal Guide is a protein powder, and this is mainly as a matter of convenience. However, you can also meet your protein targets completely through whole food sources if you prefer.

If you are interested in adding other supplements to your routine, we highly recommend running it by your doctor or a registered dietitian to discuss if it'll be beneficial for you.


Meal prep tips

Meal prepping is a ritual so many of our clients stand by, and is especially handy if you're short on time, work long hours, or you're just not the biggest fan of cooking. Not only will you save time in the kitchen each day, you also save money by buying your groceries in bulk for the week.


We recommend dedicating some of your time to meal prep in advance each week, for example, blocking out time on a Sunday afternoon to cook your lunches and potentially a few dinners for the week, and doing another cook up mid-week to replenish.

Most foods that can be meal prepped are safe to be stored in an air-tight container and refrigerated for around three to five days, and can be frozen to last you a little longer. You'll find that the majority of meals in the MWU App have a recommended storage time listed under the recipe method for your reference.

Here's a guide of safe refrigeration times for cooked foods:

Chicken - 3-4 days
Plain pasta - 3-4 days
Meat substitutes - 3-4 days
Seafood - 2-3 days
Open yoghurt - 2-3 days

We know meal prepping can be difficult when you're tracking, so we've created a handy Serving Size tool in the MWU App to take away all the guesswork and confusing calculations for you. When meal prepping (or cooking up multiple servings), use the + button to select the number of s
erving sizes you wish to make and watch your quantity of ingredients update accordingly.

Your recipes will show the quantity required for cooked food items, except for egg whites and oats. For your veggies, you can either weigh your non-starchy vegetables cooked or raw as it makes very little difference in nutritional makeup. However, we do recommend weighing your starchy vegetables such as potatoes cooked. This way you can prepare a big batch of food for the week and weigh out your proportions cooked.

You're also provided with a Food Swap feature in your app. This will allow you to swap certain foods out to add some variety into your Meal Guide. You can also use your Food Swap feature to view the quantities of most of your ingredients weighed raw. Simply select a recipe and click 'Swap', you can then click the arrows next to the food you are wishing to swap and the app will give you alternatives to foods that have similar macros.

If you follow the correct quantities when cooking, there is no need to weigh out each ingredient separately when dividing your meals up into containers. If you are meal prepping for 4 days for example, you will still be consuming the same amount of total calories across the 4 days, so simply eye ball your portion sizes into 1/4 servings.

To take your organisation to the next level, you could even pre-wash, chop up and store your fruits and vegetables after a grocery shop. Not only will this save you time when it comes to cooking, you'll also be more likely to reach for a nutritious snack when it's all prepared and ready for you to grab on the go. You can do the same with your snacks and other storable foods like breakfast cereals, by pre-measuring your portions into containers for the week.

Creating the perfect training split

The perfect training split is the one that best fits in with your lifestyle, is realistic for your time, and reflects the goals you are working towards.

For your program we provide you with a 6 day training split with 1 dedicated rest day, however you don't have to follow the recommended split to a tee!

We encourage you to re-arrange your workout days to fit your lifestyle, so that your training is convenient for you and you're ready to jump straight into your workout with the click of a button.

To customise your Workout Planner, hit the edit button in the bottom right corner of your workouts screen and click 'Update My Workouts'. Then, simply drag to rearrange the order of each part of your workout. 

When you're happy with your plan, click the same button to save your changes, and if you want to reset your plan back to the recommended order, click the button again to 'Refresh My Workouts'.

You can complete the weekly sessions in any order that works for you, but we do recommend starting your workouts with some stretching and/or an activation circuit to warm up the muscle groups you're working on. You'll find a collection of additional warm ups and cool downs in Rachel's Workout Library, by clicking the + button next to your daily workout session. 

If you're brand new to weight training or getting back into your fitness routine after some time off, you can expect to feel a bit sore after your sessions, particularly in the first week and anytime the intensity increases. To learn how to cope with the muscle soreness, take a read of our tips to maximising your post workout recovery here.

Please don't feel guilty if you do skip a workout or a few, or need an additional rest day. However we don't recommend doubling up your sessions if you do miss a workout. When you're ready to get back into it, simply pick back up from the current day. You have six months access to the MWU App, so you can always go back and complete any sessions you missed at the end of your program.

Throughout your fitness journey, always remember to listen to your body. Pay attention to the signs of fatigue and consider if you need an extra rest day, or if you need to swap some exercises to suit an injury.

This also means knowing your personal limits and your standards for the effort you give. Through consistent training you will learn to recognise when it's time to push yourself and increase your weights, or drop back the weight to focus on your technique first. 

To pick the perfect weight selection for an exercise, it's important to test the waters and experiment with a weight range that challenges you, but still allows you to complete full reps with correct form.

You'll find more information on what range of weights you should be choosing, in the MWU App. Hit the information button at the top of your workouts screen to find our suggested weight selection guide. 

Additional activities  

Tracking your steps is a great way to understand what your additional activity is like outside of your workout routine, and can be used to manipulate your daily non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT) - which is a major contributor to how many calories you burn each day.

Based on your chosen goal of Fat Loss, Muscle Gain, or Both, we've set a suggested step target for you in the MWU App, which you can find listed under the Goals screen. 

These step targets are considered a part of your daily activity on top of your scheduled training sessions. So if you're committed to putting in additional efforts to achieve your goal, steps are something easy you can add into your routine. But, there's no need to stress if you can't hit your step targets, you can still achieve your goals without this extra movement.

However, to maximise your results beyond your training and nutrition, we can't stress the importance of your sleep routine and hitting your daily water targets enough!

For a happy and healthy body and brain, we recommend aiming for 2.5 litres of water each day, and getting an average of 7-8 hours of sleep. To help you stay on track and accountable to these targets, you can log your nightly hours, steps, and water intake in the app each day.

Move your mindset

On top of the aspects of wellness we've mentioned above, one of the biggest factors to achieving your goals is your mindset.

Your mindset is what ultimately sets you up for success or failure, and is a huge influencer of your overall state of happiness. If you believe in yourself and your ability to achieve your goal, you will. But if you're always thinking of excuses as to why you can't do it and filling your mind with doubt, you're only creating limiting beliefs for yourself that will hold you back and stop you from getting where you want to be.

To stay determined and focused throughout your program, it's important to focus on mastering your mindset through a number of practical strategies, like strategic goal setting, positive self-talk, and regular gratitude practice. 

By adopting a goal-oriented, growth mindset you'll be able to achieve whatever you put your mind to. So, before embarking on day 1 of your program, we encourage you to take some time to sit down and get clear on your goals for the journey ahead.

Once you've set your main goals, break these down into smaller milestones and daily habits that you know you can stick to. Through consistent efforts each day, sticking to these routines is what will get you closer to your bigger goals. 

A great way to keep your goals top of mind is to create a vision board or folder of all the things that inspire you and trigger an emotional, visceral response to motivate you. This could be a workout playlist of songs that uplift you, photos of people or things that inspire you, or some words of affirmation.

Having a strong vision and making it a ritual to look at it first thing in the morning will set the tone for each day and remind you what you're working towards.

This practice will help you bring your future self into the present moment, and realise that the only thing in between who you are today and the best version of you is the actions you take today. Not tomorrow, not next week, but today. 

To keep you even more accountable, share your goals and vision with a friend, on your social media, or post in the Move With Us Community Forum.

One of the best parts of doing a program is that you're not in this journey alone. We are so blessed to have a community of thousands of like-minded, empowering humans all around the world to motivate and cheer you on every step of the way.

We encourage you to get active in the Forum and our Instagram tags to get to know some of the other amazing women doing this program alongside you.

So there you have our top tips for embarking on your Move With Us Program. We can't wait to follow your journey to building confidence, strength, discipline, and a strong mindset over the coming months!

If you're yet to sign up to a program, you can read more about our FITSTRONG and ACTIVE programs here, or chat directly to our team of experts via live chat or email at info@movewithus.com, to discover the best option for you.