We’ve all been through those feelings of putting things off from time to time, especially when it comes to exercising. It feels great to set it aside and claim a “me” day every once in a while by heading into a nice unhealthy restaurant or sitting on the couch and sleeping all day. It’s a human quality everyone has and that’s okay. It’s just a battle to remember to head back to the gym once that day has been dealt with and to continue with a regular schedule.
However, sometimes we can overdo those days and create unhealthy habits for ourselves, a big no-no in many cases, which is why we’re here to bring you back to that positive place once more and get you back into a new routine. These ten steps are here to ensure that healthy spark is back on full throttle to help get you get back into exercising.
1. Get into the Mindset
The very first thing you should do is reclaim that mindset you once lost. After all, a human habit is all based on the mind and the actions that preceded it. The best thing to do to start getting that exercising mindset is to tell yourself you’re going to exercise again and then slowly put it into action.
Focus on how you would want to look; for many of us, we would like to appear as physically fit as possible and have a good mental state of happiness to achieve it. Once that mindset appears and you stick to improving yourself, then you can truly start to exercise again.
2. Slow and Steady
The reason I say to start slowly as you’re regaining your exercise mindset is so that mindset doesn’t get overwhelmed. If a person thinks too much about one thing as they’re going through the motions, it can make them stressed out and not want to do what they were previously doing. We don’t want that to happen to you if you plan to start exercising again, so starting small isn’t a bad thing. It helps to improve your well-being and to gradually take you onto more challenging things.
It also helps give the body time to adjust back into what its original rhythm was. Even if it’s ten minutes or fifteen minutes a day, it can help to not let the body overwork itself and possibly even injure it.
As the turtle once said: Slow and Steady Wins the Race!
3. Set Goals
Some may be able to do those slow ten minute workouts from time to time and get that rhythm going, but sadly there are many that can’t jump right in. That is perfectly fine however sometimes all you need is a confidence boost to set some goals so you can improve on what needed to be improved on before.
With setting goals, it also helps to understand the body as well, especially after a long break from working out at the gym. It helps to have a more realistic approach to exercise the body rather than going with the flow and doing things spontaneously that could potentially injure the body.
And injuring the body is a very, very bad thing.
One way to set up goals is to research which workouts are best for certain times of the day as well as what form and muscles they build on. Once you have a good enough understanding, then set those goals like it’s nobody’s business!
As stated before (and in various articles regarding this topic), the body is something that needs to be understood. It has its own set of emotions too, and after a long break from exercising that body, they can be very exasperated at times. That is why it is best to stretch the body, getting it all loosened up and in a great frame of mind to start exercising in instead of one that feels rigid and harsh like Anger from Inside Out.
Because truth be told, that is not fun for either you or your body.
The body should be able to withstand the exercise it is about to be doing and by stretching the body, it makes it easier to improve your form and muscles. For example, when you wake up in the morning, you stretch your body to get it to move around and do what needs to be done for the day. The very same logic applies when exercising the body.
5. Eat Healthier Foods
One does not simply exercise again and expect to get nutrients at the same time.
When it comes to exercising, the body not only gains, but it also loses some things in order to gain muscle and lean body fat. It’s like photosynthesis but for the body- the body receives the muscle and loses fat in return. Of course, without the right nutrients to get that reaction going, how can you reciprocate if you don’t have the power to do so? The sad truth is, you won’t be able to.
Which is why one should eat food, but not just any food. They should be from the one place that no one wants to go to when it comes to grocery shopping. It’s a place filled with greens, circles, and other things that don’t pop out like Pop Tarts in the cereal aisle.
I’m talking about healthy food choices, people, cause without the right energy sources, the body won’t be able to compete and improve itself. By making sure to eat the right portions of fruits and vegetables along with the usual meats and poultry you buy to cook, you can help improve your body for exercise and for a healthier lifestyle altogether.
Even when we don’t exercise on a daily basis, sleep is an important factor so the body can properly function. Without the right amounts of proper sleep, you’ll eventually feel broken down and constantly tired, which is not a good thing for your body or your mental well-being.
That’s why it is important to not just nap when you’re tired, but to figure out the best sleep schedule to have so you can become well rested for the next day. Sometimes it’s best to consult with a doctor or even do research online to figure out the number of hours a person needs to sleep.
Lucky for you, we did the researching part.
According to the National Sleep Foundation, a person on average should sleep for about 7 to 9 hours a night in order to have a well-rested body.
7. Partner Up
It’s not easy to get back into the grind you used to have, especially if you’re doing it by yourself. In fact, it’s harder when you do it by yourself as that requires a lot more willpower and can lead to stressing the body out in different ways.
That is why you should buddy up whenever possible so it’s easier on your mental health and helps you become motivated to improve your body even more. Having a buddy (or partner but we like to make it light around here) builds a relationship as you are exercising and it helps keep you on your toes as they can be there to guide you, warn you, and have fun while you’re building a better version of yourself.
8. It’s Not Always the Gym
When you plan to restart your exercising days and get back into shape, it doesn’t have to be in the gym per se. Sometimes the gym can become too noisy when it comes to working out and it can lead to not going altogether as the atmosphere isn’t what you want it to be when you exercise. Plus with all the traffic getting there, and the parking, and so on, no one wants to endure that and then feel tired and stressed when you enter the gym doors.
Exercising can really be done at any time of the day that allows for a break. Many start their morning routines running around the block while others find a short break in between their work schedule to find a nice yoga class here and there. The living room at your house or apartment can be a place for exercising as well.
In the long run, exercising can be done in any place to meet your needs. It’s only a matter of fitting it into your schedule and finding that special ten or fifteen-minute timeframe to exercise.
9. Treat Yourself
It’s being human that receiving a reward makes us feel good, which is true in most cases. The same goes when it comes to exercising, as rewarding yourself after a nice and perhaps lengthy session makes you feel good about the effort you’ve put in. It’s like an intrinsic reinforcement, and it allows for more rewards to come when you progress and do more of that exercise routine.
However, make sure not to abuse the reward system as it can lead to going back into the habit you went through before. That’s not a good thing as the motivation is gone and you’ll be back on the couch in a short amount of time.
Not that the couch is a bad place to sleep at times…
10. It’s For You
At the end of the day, no matter how many minutes you exercise each day, where you go to work out again, or how many healthy alternatives you can find online, the real reason you should be exercising again is for you. It’s you that you want to improve on and it’s you that you want to be a better person overall.
Many times we tend to do these exercises because some other source said so or said you will not live a good life or because our family and friends chastise us and force the thought onto us, which should not be the case.
We are the architects of our lives and we build the image we want to be. For the sake of exercising, we should feel internally that we want to get back into the groove. Make sure to clear your mind and make your body feel prepared to do what needs to be done for your own personal benefit.
Make sure to do it for you.