Fallen off the wagon?
As part of our assessment we like to find out what you get up to in life, partly so we can explore your goals and partly so we can work out if there has been any change in load in your life that might have contributed to your symptoms developing. One recurring theme the Team have noticed is that many of you stopped going to your gym, or yoga and Pilates classes during the first lockdown (in 2020!) and just haven’t got back into it even though you know you want to or know you’d benefit from it.
Life gets in the way. We get it.
Changing habits is HARD. We get it.
Here are a few tips on how to get back on that exercise wagon:
1. Remove those barriers. Ask yourself what’s preventing you from going back. Is it lack of time, other commitments, financial constraints, anxiety around being in public spaces in this COVID world? Once you’ve focused in on those barriers then you can work on removing them or working out solutions. For some of us it’s motivation; which brings us to…
2. Remember your ‘why’. Finding motivation to exercise again is tough so you need to look in to why you want to do it in the first place. Some of us are doing it for fun, for mental health, for physical health or to connect with people. For most of us it probably comes down to adding to your quality of life. Write your ‘why’ down and keep coming back to it in those moments of low motivation.
3. Team up with a mate. Scheduling in exercise with someone is great if you’re lacking motivation as it keeps you accountable for your actions and is great for your mental health!
4. Go slow and steady. For those of you who have already seen one of our Team and returned to activity after an injury or pain episode you’ll know that we always want you to start gradually. When you’re pain-free it’s the same deal. It’s likely you will have lost some fitness so don’t expect to take up where you left off. The general rule is to then increase one variable (intensity, repetitions, weight, time) by about 10% each week. If you are returning to a sport ensure you include sports specific exercises and drills to help prevent injury, and return to training for a few weeks before match play.
5. Warm up. This can be as simple as doing an easier version of the exercise, going for a walk or doing some deep breathing exercises. Make it specific to the activity you’re doing in order to prevent injury.
6. Listen to your body. It’s normal to feel muscle soreness after doing exercise and it’s also normally ok to feel low levels of pain during exercise but you know your body and pain best so do what feels right for you. If you need an alternative to an exercise or are unsure about anything you’re feeling then ask for help!
7. Rest. This is when the good stuff happens…your body adapts! So it’s really important to make sure you build this in to your week.
8. Have fun! Enough said.
If you need any guidance, don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our Team at A Fine Balance.
Take care, all!