You guys, it’s been a rough few weeks. I’m not going to be a complainer and that’s not what this post is about, I promise. The last several weeks have been killer, though, and it’s taken a toll on my workout motivation.
Normally, working out is a stress relief for me. I get excited about breaking a sweat and don’t even mind the freakishly early wake-up call to get me to the gym. Lately, though, having even just ONE more thing on my to-do list has made me want to cry. I’ve gone from working out 4-5 times a week to like, once…..-ish. Ha! It’s fine. I’ve been walking a lot during that time, so I don’t feel as if my general fitness has just taken a complete nosedive. I’m ready to pull myself out of the slump, however, so it’s time to take some action!
I know I’m not the only one who’s gone through a busy/stressful time and let workouts slip through the cracks. I think they key, though, is making sure you jump back on the wagon before a “slump” turns into a permanent lifestyle change. They say it takes 21 days to form a habit and I’m dangerously close to that, so here’s my plan to get back to a more regular workout schedule.
Get some perspective
This one was hard, since it seemed like everyone else was hitting the gym 6 days a week, and by everyone else, I mean other healthy living bloggers and everyone on my FB feed hashtagging the Boston Marathon. I felt like a total slacker. I started feeling guilty that I wasn’t doing HIIT workouts and running several days a week. After pulling back and getting some perspective, however, I realized I probably needed the extra rest. In the grand scheme of things, it really wasn’t a huge deal.
I even Googled “how much should I work out?” to see what the professionals recommend and was really surprised to see that you don’t actually need to do that much to reap the health benefits. 30 minutes of brisk walking 5 days a week and some strength training actually IS enough. Crazy, right? I figured as long as I was meeting those guidelines I wouldn’t feel like a total slacker.
Create a reasonable schedule
Making a plan each week is going to be crucial. For a long time I was so in the routine of working out that I’d plan stuff out the night before and just go with it. Coming out of a slump will make things more challenging, though, so I plan on writing down everything I want to do and putting it in my calendar. I’ve been telling myself every week for a month that I’ll do this and I haven’t.
It’d be nice to have someone nag me about this besides myself, so feel free to nag away in the comments. I probably need it.
Create a short-term goal
I’m all about exercising for the long term and for your general health, but sometimes small goals can help you get back on track. For me, it’s our quickly approaching trip to St. Thomas. In less than two weeks, my winter-y pasty self will be sporting a bikini on the beach, so I’d better start preparing now! I know realistically that I won’t see any major changes to my body in two weeks. Having a deadline in mind, though, will help me pick up the pace and hopefully get me back into that fitness frame of mind.
Suck it up
After a couple weeks of taking it easy, sometimes you just need to kick your own ass and get back to it. It was a nice- maybe even necessary- break while it lasted, but now I’m itching to be back in the gym. I’ll need to give myself several pep talks when that alarm goes off at 4:30 in the morning, but hopefully remembering all the reasons I love working out will do the trick and get me out of bed. Let’s do this!
How do you motivate yourself out of a workout slump?
What’s the longest you’ve gone without working out?
Do you have any summer plans you’re working towards?