Fitness-wise, the last year has been a little rocky for me. I won’t go into detail about all the things that I thought were more important than getting my butt in the gym, but looking back, it’s clear that most of them were just excuses and I just got lazy. I’d like to think that I did my best, but I know I let ‘life’ get in the way of my health one too many times. Another thing I know is that it’s time to make a change…again.
This won’t be my first time trying to lose weight and get fit. Unlike the first time back in 2013, I won’t be starting completely from scratch. My diet could be a little better, but it’s mostly where it needs to be. I really just need to focus on my fitness. However, that will be easier said than done. Getting back to my local GoodLife Fitness after taking the better part of a year off is not going to be an easy feat.
Regardless, of what it will take, one of my goals for this year is to get my fitness act together. And since I know many of you may be in the same boat, I wanted to share some of the things I’ll be focusing this time around. Hopefully, by following these steps, we can get back into the gym and actually maintain the initial momentum for the foreseeable future.
Aside: I’ve created a workbook to go along with this post that will expand on things I talk about here. But, it’ll only be available to people on my mailing list. So, make sure you’re on the list so you can download your copy of the Gym Take Two workbook.
5 Steps to getting back in the gym
1. Identify what went wrong
Obviously, if you used to workout and maintain a fitness regimen, but you don’t anymore something went wrong. You may think you’re ready to get back on the horse, but if you don’t know what made you stop the first time, chances are, it’ll happen again.
With that in mind, the first thing I plan to do is sit down and really think about all the factors that influenced my decisions to skip my workouts this year. This process needs to be thorough. No sugar coating it. You need to actually dig deep and find the real reasons, not just the excuses, then deal with them so they won’t interfere again.
2. Figure out your current situation
If you’ve been out of the gym for a while, your body isn’t going to be the same as it used to be. You’ll have lost muscle mass and definition. You’ll have put on or lost weight depending on your situation. You’ll have lost strength and stamina. In order to get the most of this second go around with the gym, you need to accurately determine where you are NOW so you can figure out where you want to go and how you plan to get there.
3. Set new goals
Having goals is a big part of staying fit. So now that you’ve figured out your current fitness stats, it’s time to decide what you want them to be in the future. What are you trying to work towards? Do you want to lose weight? Gain weight? Gain muscle mass? Lift a certain amount. Do a certain number of reps at a particular weight? Run a 5K or half marathon?
Document all your goals, both short and long term and make sure that they’re actionable.
4. Devise a plan for reaching those goals
Goals without action plans are rarely accomplished, so this is a key step. Now that you’ve decided what your long and short term goals are going to be, it’s time to figure out how you’re going to accomplish them. Will you get a personal trainer? How often do you plan to go to the gym? What workout plan(s) will you follow? How often will you run? How far? Will group classes be a part of your workout regimen?
Figure out what your fitness plan is going to be and remember to re-evaluate and update it often.
5. Don’t live in the past
Back at the beginning of this year, I could run for 30 minutes without breaking a sweat. I could do pushups and pullups. I could squat more than a quarter of my weight. These days? Not so much. And I need to remember that.
I need to go back to basics and not push myself to do all those things right off the bat. First, I have to work on building up my stamina and strength. Not court burnout or injury by doing too much too soon. I need to focus on my progress and accomplishments now instead of all the progress I lost. Yes, it will be tough. But in the end, it’ll save me from giving up before I even begin.
What about you?
- Have you been consistent with your workouts over the last year?
- Why or why not? What your biggest reason for skipping your workouts (if you did)?
- Do you plan to get more gym time in 2016?
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This post was written as part of the GoodLife Fitness Blogger Ambassador Program; however all opinions expressed are my own.