Even with the best of intentions, sometimes you simply happen to slip off your regular fitness regime. Whether if it’s because of too much work, a new job, school exams, or a long waited holiday, we all sometimes stop exercising for a few days that turn to weeks. The weeks become a month, then another month passes by and it’s too hard to start again.
I’ve been there myself and I know the feeling. Here are 6 steps to coming back on track with your healthy routine…
Step 1: Accept it as normal
If your morning run seems impossible or you don’t feel comfortable to go to the gym in your current shape, don’t beat yourself up. This makes you human – just like the rest of us. It is completely normal and we all need a break sometimes. That’s what you did – you took a break, so when you get back on it, you’re stronger. No frustration, no self-criticism. The most important thing is that you want to start again!
Step 2: Check your current form
Now that we agreed you’ve taken a well deserved break and you’re ready to get back on track, let’s evaluate your current fitness condition. Don’t judge yourself or compare yourself to fitness models on Instagram – use them as inspiration goals. But before that, let’s see where you’re at by breaking it down to three main categories:
Muscle or strength loss
Athletes retain strength gains during short periods of inactivity (two weeks) and keep significant portions of their strength during inactivity lasting up to 12 weeks. Chances are you haven’t lost much of your strength yet. Even if you have been inactive for longer than 12 weeks, your body is capable of getting to your best shape again.
If you’ve been enjoying life, then you probably added a few bits and bobs here and there. For us girls, the tummy area and thighs are our weak points. Don’t worry about cellulite – you’re certainly not alone. We all have it in different proportions and there is nothing wrong with it. It makes us healthier actually. So let’s just see how much you’ve gained so you know which areas to tackle. Regular exercise and a good diet can sort it out.
At the beginning of your new exercise routine you won’t be able to go as far as you used to, so it’s important to avoid your heart beating too fast. I find Beets BLU HR monitor really useful as I can check my HR on my smartphone and I know how much to push for fat burn or for increasing my stamina.
Step 3: Set the objectives
Now that you’ve taken the time to evaluate your current form and you know how far you’ve come, set the objectives. Maybe you want to run a 5K marathon in 8 weeks? Or, you want to get rid of the belly fat before you hit the beach next month? Sure, it’s all possible! Set achievable goals and give your body time to adapt to the new routine.
We all would agree that you won’t have time unless you make time to exercise. Avoid those low energy moments by being prepared for them:
- Get your workout outfit ready from the night before – a sports bra, nice print leggings and cool trainers.
- Put a water-bottle and pre- or post-workout snack in your rucksack.
- Set a playlist on your phone.
- Pack your gym bag before you go to work.
Step 4: Plan a “reboot” week
One key to success is designing your first week of getting back to exercise, or first two weeks if you don’t want to stress too much. Make a detailed checklist of the things you have to do:
- Diet: introduce green tea to your plan
- Put on workout attire
- Play your favourite music
- 5 minutes fat burning cardio
- Diet: drink more green tea
- Prepare your gym outfit for the next day
- Diet: replace the afternoon cookies with nuts
- Put on gym clothes
- Get in the car / on the bus and go to the gym
- Two sets of squats
- Two sets of front leg lunges
- Diet: add more protein to your breakfast
- Diet: cut down the carbs
- Prepare your running clothes for the next day
- Diet: keep the low carbs
- Put on your clothes for running
- Get out and start your first running route
- Diet: keep the diet plan
- Prepare your gym clothes for the next day
Step 5: Take a challenge
You’ve done the first week or two and you already are stronger. All aches and pains are out of the way and your body feels stronger. Now is the time challenge yourself to reach the next level. You can set:
- a 30-day challenge to train every day or every other day;
- to reach X miles in a month;
- to cycle at least 5 km five times a week;
- to combine yoga, weights and run every week; and so on…
I use Endomondo (available on iPhone and Android) to set my own challenges, but you can also invite your friends to join you or you can join other people from all over the world.
Step 6: Stick to it
Once you found a challenge that works for you, stick to it – it’s the fun part! Set milestones and reward yourself when you reach them. Completing your first challenge will make you very proud of yourself! 🙂
Beets BLU HR monitor
I teamed up with Beets BLU to review their new wireless HR monitor during a time when I was feeling down, and couldn’t keep up with my fitness routine. The little gadget kept me updated on my heart rate and pushed me to start working out again when I started losing my stamina.
The review was initially intended for Amazon only, but I loved the device so much that it inspired me to write this article so you can get your butt kicked too!
The best thing about the adjustable strap is that it can fit literally everyone and you can wear it during all sorts of exercises. You can have it under your tank top or t-shirt whilst you’re walking, running, cycling, or in the gym and no one will know, whilst your phone will be getting a full picture of your heart rate.
What is Beets BLU HR monitor?
Beets Blue HR monitor is an adjustable chest strap with sensors. It measures your heart rate and provides this information to your favorite fitness app (see full list of compatible apps for iPhone and Android). Heart rate is a great addition to your fitness stats which helps you achieve up to 200% better workout results and prevent overtraining.
How it works?
You don’t need any adapters – only a smartphone. The devices connects automatically via Bluebooth once the strap is on you. All you have to do is put it on, wet the skin underneath the sensors with water and find it from your favourite fitness app. Simple!
Where to find?