Whilst there seems to have been a big rise in people taking up regular exercise during lockdown, I know on the flip side of this a lot of people have been struggling with motivation at home.
With your regular class not on or your local gym or sports centre shut, it can be hard getting moving at home. Firstly, you’re not in your usual exercise environment. Secondly, you’re trying to workout in an environment you associate with relaxing!
Here are my ideas for how you can get back to acing your workouts.
Change your mindset
Exercise should not be a punishment for something you ate or a guilt-ridden activity you suffer because you feel you should be doing it. Of course, we know exercise is good for us and it is important for our health. However, this mindset of “I should,” can fast turn exercise into a chore. You need to look at this sometimes-dreaded word exercise differently and think of it positively. The best way to do this? Find something active you enjoy and it definitely won’t feel like hard work.
Make time for exercise
Treat a workout like an appointment or meeting and you will be less likely to view it as something you can skip. Put your workouts on your to do list and schedule them in your diary/calendar. Make sure the times suit your current weekly routine and you will find you’re more likely to stick to them. You can’t set a goal without considering the time you need to set aside to accomplish it and how this will fit around your existing schedule.
SMART stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-based. You need a SMART goal that says exactly what you want to achieve in a certain time-frame. You have to think about why you want to workout. What’s the purpose? As we’ve already discussed, because “you should,” isn’t going to cut it. The goal can be anything. It definitely does not HAVE to be a weight loss related goal. Exercise has endless benefits which can impact different areas of your life and improve them.
Setting yourself a time-specific goal gives you a focus and considering the time element will ensure you set a sensible aim i.e. one you actually have a really good chance of achieving. This will help you feel more confident from the get go. You need to be able to measure your success along the way so decide how you can do this. If you are reviewing your progress regularly this will help you stay on track.
Tackle pre-workout worries
Worried you won’t be able to manage it? Scared you’ll realise your fitness level has dropped? Remember, it’s not about being fit from the get go, it’s about getting fitter. Some people enter a marathon but walk the distance instead. There’s nothing different about the approach you can take with a workout.
Go at your own pace. The main thing is to keep moving. Exercise does not have to be attacked with an all guns blazing approach. You will always get out what you put in but don’t be worried if you need to take things steady at first while you build your fitness level back up. Tailor your workout to your ability and put as much effort into it as you feel capable.
It’s not about keeping up with anyone, it’s about keeping going! You shouldn’t just stop comparing yourself to others either. Stop comparing where you are now to where you were a few months ago!
Cut yourself some slack
If you don’t succeed the first time, it doesn’t mean you won’t succeed the second time. Always remember how far you have come rather than how far you have left to go.