How to get back into it after time off
Let's begin with the fact that there is no such thing as getting back into it. Cultivating a healthy and balanced lifestyle should mean that there is no switch. No on or off button. No all or nothing mentality. More so, think of it as a dimmer (the type of light you can alter the brightness with a dial). That’s the way you should approach your training and fitness. There will be weeks where you train five times a week and smash it, and there will be other weeks where if you train twice, it’s a win, and that’s okay! A healthy and balanced relationship with training is more important than physical fitness.
If you feel lost about becoming more active in your routine post-festivities, consider these three tips below!
Please don’t force it.
Don’t feel like that outdoor run? Simple, don’t do it. Let us explain
Find what works for you and brings you joy! If you enjoy weights or pilates more, you’re more likely to commit to going five times a week. If you enjoy pilates but are forcing yourself to run because you believe you should run, then you’re most likely not going to commit long-term. More importantly, it will not bring you happiness and joy; what is the point? This also brings us to our next issue, consistency.
Consistency > Intensity
Consistency wins every single time over intensity. Remember the dimmer analogy we used above? It applies here too. Let’s say you're socialising more at this time of the year, you’re lacking a little motivation to get going again, and you just can’t be bothered. Acknowledge it and accept it! Make a goal that will work for you, and stick to it. Make sure your plan suits your situation and reflects your realistic motivation levels and commitments.
For example, I want to walk 30 minutes daily and train once this week. Achievable right? Once you’ve committed to that routine and are happy, re-evaluate and up it to two training sessions, three, and so on. Reflect on where you are now and where you want to be, road map it, and slowly but surely build your routine to work toward it sustainably.
One word, walk
Are you catching up with a friend for coffee? Why not walk and sip along the beach? Are you driving to work? Why not cycle or park a little further for that extra 15 minutes of walking? Are you sitting on your phone during your 30-minute lunch break? Why not walk and talk with a colleague or listen to a podcast whilst soaking up some vitamin D on your walk? Taking the elevator to the fifth floor? Why not ensure five extra minutes more to walk the stairs?
I'm not talking about ultra marathon power walking. We’re talking about low-intensity movement. Many people obsess over one hour in the gym but happily forget about the other twenty-three hours of the day. Instead, please focus on the small, incremental activities during your day; it’ll make more difference than that one hour in the gym!