People take breaks from exercise for a variety of reasons. Whether it’s an injury, a busy schedule, a vacation or a loss of motivation, getting back into a workout routine can be challenging, but it’s definitely achievable. Here are some ways to start exercising again after taking a break!
- Set goals that make sense. Before starting any exercise routine, it’s essential to set realistic goals based on where you currently are in your fitness journey. You should always talk with your doctor or another medical professional before starting a workout routine, especially if you have medical conditions that can impact your workout. Avoid setting unrealistic or overly challenging goals, as this can discourage you from continuing your exercise routine. Invest in quality workout accessories that can help you reach your goals easily. Start with easy and achievable goals so you can feel good when you meet them!
- Start off slow. It’s important to pace yourself when starting a workout routine, especially after you’ve taken a break. Get back into working out by walking, jogging or even cycling. Swimming can even be a great low-intensity workout. Then, move to more high-intensity workouts like running or weight lifting. This helps your body reorient to doing more physical activity but helps to prevent any injuries.
- Find a workout buddy. Motivation is essential in starting — and sticking to! — an exercise routine. Find a workout buddy or join a fitness community to stay accountable. Friends, family and even coworkers can all serve as your workout buddy. Set reminders on your phone for when to work out and add it to your work calendar so coworkers don’t try to schedule meetings with you. Group fitness classes are also a great way to stay motivated when it comes to exercising. Do yourself a favor and find someone to help keep you accountable and motivated!
- Look for workouts that you enjoy. Let’s face it — working out can be a bit of a drag, especially if you struggle with staying motivated or have a lot of medical conditions. That’s why it’s crucial to find workouts and activities you enjoy doing! If you’re enjoying it, then you’re more likely to stick to your workout routine. Lots of people find multimodal workouts like dancing, swimming, hiking, and even cycling fun and engaging workouts to do. This helps you stay consistent with your workout.
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- Make it part of your everyday routine. Creating a workout routine and sticking to it is how you see progress and achieve your goals. Whether you plan your workouts in advance or schedule them into your calendar, always remember that consistency is key when it comes to exercise. Otherwise, it’ll be easy to break the habit you’ve formed.
- Split your workouts. Workout splitting is something many with an active lifestyle do to maximize their workout routines. By focusing on specific parts of the body during each workout, you can target an area without putting too much strain on everything else on your body. No matter what, make sure you wear the proper workout gear, such as sustainable rings and compression socks, to ensure that every workout helps you get closer to reaching your goals.
- Try bodyweight exercises first. Instead of jumping straight to High Intensity Interval Workouts (also known as HIIT), consider bodyweight exercises! Bodyweight exercises are an effective way to start exercising again, especially if you are coming from a break. You can do these exercises anywhere, even without equipment. Planks, push-ups, squats and even lunges are all great bodyweight exercises. You don’t even need a gym membership to do them! Use your couch, dining room chairs or bed frame for assistance in creating the best bodyweight workout environment.
- Always warm up and cool down. One of the most common mistakes and reasons why people quit working out so soon after starting back up again is because they don’t warm up or cool down before and after a workout. Before you start your workout, make sure you stretch and do some light exercises to get your heart rate up and your muscles ready for the main exercises. Afterward, give your body the chance to recover properly by stretching and drinking lots of water and even get yourself a protein-filled snack or two. This will help you prevent injuries and stay motivated to continue on your fitness journey.
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- Slow and steady wins the race. It’s an age-old saying, but it’s definitely true. Focus on gradually increasing the intensity of your workouts. This is crucial to prevent injuries and make quality progress. Start with low-intensity workouts, and gradually incorporate more challenging exercises into your routine. Your body will thank you in the long run!
- Change it up. Depending on how frequently you start or stop exercising, you might have heard of “plateauing.” Plateauing in workouts is typically where people see results early on but suddenly hit a spot where they stay the same, even though they’re still working out and eating healthily. This is typically because people’s bodies adjust and get used to the new amount of physical activity. Change up your workouts by trying out new, more intense exercises and increasing their duration. This will go a long way in combating plateauing in your workouts! Plus, it’ll help you stick to your exercise routine despite seeing slower changes.
- Show patience. Don’t forget that progress takes time. Stay patient with your workouts and try to be as consistent as possible. Celebrate meeting your smaller goals along the way and keep pushing toward your bigger ones.
Starting an exercise routine after taking a break can be challenging, but it’s something that you can do with a little patience and a lot of dedication. No matter how you get back into the routine, the most important part is that you stick with it. Staying realistic and finding exercises you like to do are just a couple of ways you can meet your fitness goals.