As the new year approaches, I know many of us are looking to introduce, or re-introduce, fitness into our lives. You are wondering how to start working out again after your time off.
Whether you are coming back to fitness following an injury or are simply looking to increase your activity level in the new year, here are some of the tips to help you.
Tips for starting or restarting your fitness journey
Start slowly and be realistic
Trying to do too much too soon can lead to burning out quickly. Think about what your current baseline is and then set a measurable but realistic goal to slowly work towards.
So for example, instead of saying “I want to work out more next year”, turn your goal into something you can measure, like “I will include two days of strength training and one day of cardio into my schedule each week this month to see how I like it.”
Think about what makes sense for you and your personal routine
If you’re not a morning person, don’t try to force yourself to do morning workouts just because you see other people posting about it. Or if you know that after work commitments can bog you down, perhaps evenings are not the best times to hit the gym.
What makes the most sense for you? And when you figure that out, you can schedule it into your calendar like any other appointment.
If I’m working out alone, I prefer morning or lunchtime workouts. I am more self motivated then. If I’m training with my coach, I’m OK with after work because I have someone to give me an extra push.
Remember your workout doesn’t have to be long
If you like to run, sign up for a race
Having something on the calendar is a great form of motivation. You can usually find a training group to train with through your local running store. Or you can find an accountability partner to run with or just check in with.
Buy some fun new fitness gear to motivate yourself
There’s nothing like a new fitness outfit or two when you start working out again. There are so many different options out there for affordable pieces. I love buying fun and clever tank tops that I can wear to the gym or with a pair of shorts.
It’s important to have fun through it all. If you’re doing a form of fitness you find fun, you’re way more likely to keep it up. Exercise can be great “me time”, but only if you are doing it in a way that reduces rather than adds stress to your life.
What are your best tips for starting (or re-starting) a fitness routine?