Whether you’re struggling with a workout slump or it’s been a while since you’ve last renewed your Gym membership, you can have a safe and quick comeback and feel greater than ever.
1. Evaluate your present physical condition
First, you must answer a few questions to make sure you have the right perspective and intention at hand.
-Why did you stop working out in the first place (medical condition, laziness, new-found love, an injury)
-What have you been doing in the past, can you do it now?
-What has changed since the last time you’ve worked out in terms of weight, age, pregnancy, medical condition, other physical limitations, your expectations, and goals?
Answering these questions will give you a clear idea of what you can do, how to do it and how to do it successfully. Needless to say, you should consult your doctor if you’ve been away for more than three months.
2. Consider the benefits
Bring to mind all the euphoria you felt when you were exercising, the alertness, the energy and mental clarity you experienced because you were regularly exercising.
Considering the many benefits of exercising will motivate you to assume a much more positive approach.
To refresh for you, exercising gives you a healthier body and a more appealing self-image, your self-esteem increases and you feel physically stronger and healthier. Not to mention that your perception of your desirability also increases when you’re in a fitness program!
3. Have a better plan this time
Location, trainer, type of exercise are all important for having a successful and enduring comeback.
Choose a sport or gym you like, it’s better to be one you are comfortable with rather than one that’s just popular. Distance is another important parameter, if it takes your 40-minutes to commute to the gym, you’re bound to give up in soon, so find a convenient, close-by fitness center, ideally one within walking distance.
These parameters should be factored in as they will help you get back in shape successfully.
4. Have patience and lots of it
Even Olympic medalists need a catch-up period, so don’t pout, or get discouraged by the poor results or extra effort you must make in the first few weeks of working out.
In fact, even if you’ve been away for only 3-4 months, your fitness level must have waned, so plan for a few weeks of catching up before resuming on the fitness level you once were at.
One of the best tips that set your mind in the right direction is a pre-commitment. Before you start doing your routines, you can pre-commit yourself to performing during the next two weeks, no matter how hard it may feel. In fact, it will feel hard a bit initially, but once your mind is set to just pass this period, it will be much easier to stay persistent and concentrate more on doing your workout.
The catching-up period can last anywhere from two weeks to two months, so patience is key here. If you find yourself getting discouraged, remember that’s preferable to have an easy workout one day, rather than skipping it altogether.
5. Mindset Overhaul
Especially after a long break, it’s important to be adequately prepared for the mental challenges of your comeback.
You need to be emotionally and mentally aware of the difficulties, sacrifices, and efforts you need to invest in your new beginning. This can only be achieved through a complete mindset change. Your comeback won’t succeed if you just join a Zumba class.
Your whole attitude needs to be in sync with a fitter, more health-oriented lifestyle. In other words, your mentality should be fine-tuned to a fitness and health wavelength. In this way, every act will be filtered through this fitness mindset.
6. Plan for rewards to keep you inspired
There’s nothing wrong with rewards just as long as they work in keeping you motivated. Especially after your initial 2-3 workouts, you’re most likely to experience workout slumps.
You can proactively counteract them by planning a post-workout reward; a hearty, healthy dinner, a home beauty treatment, or a message.
The only thing to consider here is that your reward should not be the one that takes you back to bad habits. The example of such reward may be smoking the cigarette or drinking your favorite alcohol aperitif. While you still may afford these joys, try not to connect good habits to bad ones.
A reward, no matter how small will encourage you to stick to your program, even if your whole body aches, pleading for a night on the couch.
7. Plan small and make it rewarding rather than stressful
The key to a successful comeback is to start small, otherwise, it will all be too overwhelming for you. Exercising is an integrated, demanding activity and for that reason, you should gradually increase difficulty.
What is more, you can ensure your exercising regime remains enjoyable and rewarding by small acts such as getting a new set of workout clothes, convincing a friend to become your workout buddy, or opting for a feel-safe exercise you know you’re good at.
These tips will make sure you consider exercising gratifying and not stressful, making it easier for you to stick to it. Good Luck!