It’s a hard thing, getting back on track. Even if you had months of great progress and were feeling amazing, accidental or planned time off can make it tough to get re-motivated. It happens to everyone, yup, even me. It’s time for me to get back onto my plan and it’s going to take some serious effort.
Why does this happen? Honestly, we like things to be easy and we settle into that routine pretty quickly. The week I took off was non-negotiable but relaxing (minus the pounding head pain) – I got to sleep in, take naps, didn’t have to pack my meals for the day (let’s be honest, I ate whatever and whenever I wanted), and I lived in sweat pants. I was on vacation from EVERYTHING! It was a pretty comfy situation and the thought of getting back to real life is less than exciting – even though I love training and my job. Alarm set at 4am, having to pack my meals after a full day of work and teaching at the gym, and the need to put on dress clothes and makeup again… being an adult isn’t fun! But, it has to be done because… well, that’s life and I’ve got a big goal quickly approaching, and apparently I have to earn an income.
When you’re faced with a similar situation, try these tips… it’s what I’m doing this week as I get back into the swing of things.
- Plan to do activities you like. If you’re excited about getting back to activity, either with your favorite thing OR something new to you, you’re more likely to stick to the plan. Try a new class or find a new workout online. If you don’t usually train arms, give them a great workout – it’ll be a new challenge for you, both mentally and physically.
- Enlist a partner in crime. Get a friend on board, someone who likes to do the same things you do, and meet them at the gym. This added level of accountability will get you there, and then the social aspect will help keep you there!
- Make a new playlist. If you’re getting back to a training program, or planning on training for a 5km run, music will help power you through it. Why not create a playlist of your current favorite songs to make you smile the whole time? I don’t know about you, but I get into a serious music rut and am terrible at updating my list. Search Top 40 lists online to find current hits, or dig deep for an old throwback list (my personal favorite). Stay tuned for my favorites – later this week 😉
- Set small goals. Forget these giant goals of losing 50lbs, let’s focus on small things which are more attainable to stay motivated. Instead, set a goal to be active three times this week, or five, whatever is realistic for your schedule. Check these goals off on your calendar to visually see your success.
- Give it time. Cut yourself some slack when you aren’t super motivated in two days. Remember that it takes time to get back into a new habit. Yes, it might happen faster for some people than others, but that doesn’t mean you need to be hard on yourself in the first week.
- Be prepared. If you have things ready to go ahead of time, you’re less likely to veer off plan. Pack your food the night before, have your gym bag ready to go, take everything to work with you so you don’t have to go home in between (and run the risk of sitting down… and not getting back up).
And last, but not least, stick with it! When quitting seems like the best option, just remember why you started and what you want to get from your plan. Keep in mind that your new schedule will become habit (again), and it’ll get you closer to your big goals than quitting will. And, pushing through those hard days will make you proud when you look back and can say “I did that”. Good luck this week, let’s get back on track!!