Winter came and went. Like most of us, you likely spent a lot of time on the couch crushing a Netflix series and ordering Uber Eats.
Spring is almost over, which had you stepping outside from time to time to avoid being called a vampire, or better yet, a homebody.
Now, summer is right around the corner, you want to build up your fitness levels, but you’re clueless as to where to begin.
Here’s a major key: take your time.
There’s no rush for getting back into fitness. I know, I know… it’s summer and you want to feel comfortable going to the beach and wearing a bathing suit. However, EVERYONE is in the same boat so flick that peer pressure to the side and dial in on your specific goals instead.
EASING BACK INTO THINGS
Injuries suck. Let’s face it. They derail your progress and leave you sitting on the sidelines. That’s not where you need or want to be.
The truth of the matter is that sometimes injuries can occur through the simplest of equations:
Doing too much, too soon, and with little regard to strategic recovery periods.
If you’ve spent the majority of the past year being relatively sedentary, you shouldn’t all of a sudden expect to transition into a well-oiled piece of machinery overnight. That’s simply not how it works.
Instead, work really diligently toward easing back into things, leaving an extra rep in the tank more times than not, and avoid the big rush so that you can do your best to reduce the chance of volume-based injuries.
In even simpler terms: listen to your body. Know that early on when getting back into the swing of things it’s much more intelligent to take an extra rest period between exercise sets, add some extra time in between training sessions to recover, and also add in some active recovery stuff like walking.
BUILDING LONG-TERM, SUSTAINABLE HABITS
We’ve all seen them…
- 21-day sugar detox
- 6 weeks to 6-pack abs
- 10-minute workouts to build lean muscle and lose fat
The list could go on and on, but I think that you get my point and I also know that my fingers hurt just typing out those silly words.
There’s a lot of silly stuff going on right now in the fitness industry. A ton of noise. Too much crap.
However, it’s important to develop the skills to tune out the silliness and filter in the good stuff. Sometimes, that can be difficult to do. But, it’s not impossible. It just takes time and some education.
When it comes down to building sustainable habits, you’ll want to make sure that you set your eyes on the long-term. Where do you see yourself in 6 months or 12 months, rather than in 2 weeks? That’s important when building out these habits.
Outcome goals may seem more fitting since they may look and sound more like what you want. However, siding with behavioral goals is always going to bring in more return on investment when it comes to your overall health and fitness.
Check out this recent Tweet from my good friend, Andrew Coates, as he outlines the difference:
“Outcome Goals (lose 20lbs) – difficult to control and set people up to fail
Behaviour Goals (complete 12 workouts this month/drink 2 bottles of water each day) – easier to control and add up to the desired outcomes over time
Set measurable behaviour goals for better results”
Andrew is one smart dude who keeps it simple and delivers results for his clients. Lean in to his wise words and start carving out sustainable habits today. They’ll last longer and also serve as a form of accountability along the way in your fitness journey.
When it comes to fitness, remember one important thing: always opt for small bites over a longer period of time versus big bites in a short period of time.
TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE SUMMER SEASON
There are far too many awesome outdoor activities that you can incorporate into your fitness routine on a weekly basis for added fun.
Not only that, but these forms of “fun” can be a great way to round out the hard work you’re doing in the gym during your training sessions.
Here are some quick examples of what I’m referring to:
- Beach games/sports: volleyball, spike ball, soccer, and football
- Water games/sports: standup paddle boarding, kayaking, canoeing, and swimming
- Outdoor activities: walking, hiking, recreational sports, and hill sprints
This list could become much more extensive, but I wanted to give you a few things to start with. The biggest theme here is to enjoy what you’re doing while taking advantage of the beautiful weather outside this summer.
Plus, getting some extra Vitamin D is never a bad idea!
Getting back into fitness while ramping everything up for summer doesn’t have to be stressful. Instead, be strategic and thoughtful about your approach.
Here are 3 keys to focus on:
- Ease back into things – take your time and avoid rushing
- Build sustainable habits – aim your target at long-term goals rather than short-term ones
- Take advantage of summer – the weather is beautiful out there, so soak in some Vitamin D with outdoor activities
Here’s to an action-packed summer filled with improving fitness levels and enjoying the process!
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