Have days, weeks or even months gone by since you’ve been to the gym? Missing a few gym days has gone longer than you’d planned and now you’re wondering if you can get back on track. Family and work commitments, an illness or all the activities from summer may have derailed your workout routine but you can restart your regimen with these three tips:
Make the Commitment and Start Easy
Start with giving yourself a month to restart your new workout routine (Skye, 2016). Set reminders in your phone calendar or planner to work out at the same time to establish a consistent habit. Prepare your workout clothing or gym bag in advance with all your essentials to make workout prep less of a hassle. Dr. Edward Laskowski of the Mayo Clinic says, “As a general goal, aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity every day” (Laskowski, 2016). Depending on your schedule, you can complete your 30-minute routine in one session or complete three shorter sessions. A short 10-minute walk in the morning, during lunch and after dinner is an easy way to get back into a daily routine of being active. The indoor walk/run track at the Center is a great option to get you warmed up before starting a simple cardio routine. Getting started is the most important step, start with a simple routine and increase your time as you become stronger.
There’s Strength in Numbers
Need some extra motivation now that you’ve committed to a regular exercise routine? Work out with a friend! Support from your friends encourages you to stay consistent and helps time to go by quickly. Ditching a solo workout also provides accountability that keeps you working toward your goal. Researchers at Miriam Hospital/Brown Medical School and University of Massachusetts Dartmouth found that participants in a weight loss regimen that included exercise lost more weight when their support partners took part in the same program and were successful at dropping pounds. Others participating alone, or whose support buddies didn’t lose weight, did not do as well (Women, 2016).The Center offers group exercise classes with degreed and certified fitness instructors to train you on effective techniques and create a fun experience for participants. You can also receive one-on-one instruction from a personal trainer.
Don’t forget to celebrate your accomplishments. Coming back to the gym after a break is not easy, and its normal to be hard on yourself. After a workout reward yourself with a healthy snack, a trip out with friends or a spa service such as a massage. Journaling your progress, watching your favorite movie or buying new workout gear as you slim down/gain muscle are simple rewards that also make you feel great on your fitness journey. Looking better and feeling better will be the ultimate reward of working out again, but rewarding yourself as you work toward your goal is fun and motivating.
Remember that the staff and fitness specialist at the Center are here to answer questions and offer expert advice on techniques and resources to help your overall health and wellness. Start today using these tips to get back to a better you.
Laskowski, E. R. (2016, September). How much should the average adult exercise every day? Retrieved from Mayo Clinic: https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/fitness/expert-answers/exercise/faq-20057916
Skye, E. (2016, March 2). 9 Simple Ways To Start Exercising Again After A Break. Retrieved from Women’s Running: https://womensrunning.competitor.com/2015/06/emily-skye/9-simple-ways-to-start-exercising-again-after-a-break_42335
Women, H. (2016). Get Motivated: The Workout You Won’t Cancel. Retrieved from Healthy Women: https://www.healthywomen.org/content/article/get-motivated-workout-you-wont-cancel
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