It’s that time of year again. Christmas is over. The mince pies have been eaten. The chocolates have (nearly) gone. The festivities are over and it’s time for normal life to resume again. But for many of us the Christmas period is one of high indulgence, and when January rolls around it can be difficult get back into healthy and active routines.
So, as a little friendly guidance, we’ve put together some of our top tips on post-Christmas fitness to help you get back into the swing of things in 2022!
Make a plan
At Christmas time our schedules can get incredibly disrupted, and our daily routines can easily fly out of the window. This, of course, includes our daily fitness regimes.
The first thing, then, is to clear space in our diaries for exercise. Whether it’s one, two, or three days per week. For an hour, or more, or less. It’s important to commit to a specific time and duration. It makes us more accountable to ourselves, and protects our exercise routines from being disrupted by other plans.
So get out your diary, find a free slot, and write, in big block capitals: ‘EXERCISE’.
If you’ve had a few weeks off, eating a little more and exercising a little less than you intended, then it’s important to be kind to yourself and take things easy in the beginning. There’s a chance that your overall fitness (and motivation) levels may have dropped slightly, and if you try jumping back in with both feet then you may end up burning out.
The most important thing is to simply get back to exercising. It’s not about how much or how intense, it’s just about the routine. So take things slowly. If you normally go to the gym four times a week, maybe start by going just twice. Then, as your motivation, desire, and fitness begin to increase, you can in turn increase the intensity and frequency of your workouts accordingly.
Sometimes goals can be very helpful. You might want to lose a certain amount of weight, gain a certain amount of muscle, or just get on the treadmill three times a week. Whatever it is, setting goals may help to keep you motivated and get back on track after a Christmas lull.
These goals don’t have to be permanent or long term, but can simply be a means of reestablishing habits. Goals can be especially important after taking a break from exercise. They give us a reason to get into the gym and start working. And, more importantly, they give us targets to aim for, making us less likely to quit in the beginning.
The trick, however, is to make sure that your goals are realistic, achievable, and enjoyable to pursue. Be certain, however, to combine goal-setting with going slow. Just as suggested above, begin with easy-going and approachable goals. Then, as and when required, you can stretch and expand them.
Book a class
Classes are particularly brilliant for accountability. Taking part in group exercise means that your absence may be noticed. So it’s harder to justify a day off. Also, going online and signing up for a class has a concrete feeling about it. You’ve committed (and paid).
Even if you don’t normally attend classes, they’re a very good option for a post-Christmas reboot. You could even take one or two per week for the first month before settling back into your regular routine. Either way, and whatever the reason, there’s really nothing like a good old-fashioned fitness class to kick start your New Year!
Remind yourself why you started exercising in the first place
Whenever your struggling to get back into the swing of things, or are feeling particularly demotivated, it can be helpful to remind yourself why you like to exercise. Perhaps it makes you feel good, or you enjoy the feeling of hitting your fitness goals. Maybe it keeps you feeling vibrant and energetic, or maybe you just find it fun.
Whatever your reason for exercising, keep it in the front of your mind. Remember how good it feels to be active, and consider how much better you feel in general when fitness is part of your life.
If you’re ready to get back to it, then why not start by taking a look at our class timetables. There’s something there for everyone, and we’d love to see you soon!