We all know that having a commitment to fitness is a healthy way to live. I became connected to fitness at a very young age – on the playground, when I would race my classmates. Being fast and strong just made me feel good. Today, I’ve made health and wellness my career and it’s still my passion. Like many others when the pandemic hit and everything shut down, I felt lost. I’m sure you did too. I rely on exercise as not only my way to stay fit but also for emotional grounding. I’m sure many of us figured out a way to workout from home, but we missed our health clubs, classes, and the communities which connect us. When a crisis hits, we can all get a little off track. I know what it’s like to have a great workout routine and then something unexpected happens. We start to miss workouts and then we seem to be in a rut.
Now we’re at a time where our gym is open and we’re all going to get back to a workout routine. There will be changes, restrictions, and therefore adjustments which we will all need to get used to. It won’t be forever and, in the meantime, we can adapt. My motto has always been, let’s take it one day at a time. Here’s how to start working out again or get back on track:
- Prepare your fitness bag or tote.
The night before, pack a gym bag and have that bag ready to go toward the exit of your home. Pack whatever workout clothes you need. Or even better, put the clothes right next to your bed so all you have to do is wake up, put them on, and go!
- Don’t overthink it.
Just get there and start your exercise routine with something easy. If you start with something small, just moving will feel good; a walk around the track or a light jog, listening to music or reading on a cardio machine, or signing up for a class.
- Commit to 10 minutes.
Studies show that if you are able to push through the first 10 minutes, you are likely to stick with your workout for 20-30 minutes or more.
- Feels so good.
Remember how good moving your body feels. The thing with a workout is while it can feel challenging, the endorphin and dopamine rush will always make you feel wonderful afterward.
- Put it in your calendar.
What’s your fitness plan for a Monday? Is it a class? Is it a weight workout or cardio? Schedule your week of workouts on Sunday night. Enter your workouts in your weekly calendar and set an alarm for a certain time and what you’ll do. What gets scheduled, gets done!
- Connect to a group.
This has been a hard and isolating time! We need each other. Group fitness, group training, or just reaching out to a friend as an exercise buddy will help with a weekly workout routine.
- Do this for YOU.
You are the most important. Don’t workout for anyone else but you. Being healthy is your individual journey. Each time you commit to working out, you are building your strength and healthy habits, so celebrate each and every workout.
Phyllis Tormey Roberts is a health and fitness expert with over 20 years of experience. She teaches at The Village and holds degrees in both Human Movement and Nutrition.