Fitness setbacks can happen at any time: kids (or you!) get sick, an injury occurs, late nights at the office keep you from making it to the gym or maybe you’ve just gotten bored with your exercise routine. No matter what’s standing in your way, it’s important not to beat yourself up over it. You can get back on track””sometimes it just takes a little extra motivation.
Here are a few things that help me when I’ve fallen off the fitness track:
New attire = new attitude
Feeling good about the way you look is a natural energy booster. Splurge on some new workout outfits or a good pair of running shoes, and you’ll be ready to get back to the gym for a fresh start. If a new wardrobe isn’t in the budget, look for an inexpensive, fun new accessory, such as lifting gloves or a pedometer, to try. You might also replace your gym bag””and even the personal care essentials packed inside. Choose a new body wash or lotion in a new scent, or try cleansing towelettes or dry shampoo to speed up your post-workout clean up.
Change is good
Sticking with the same workout routine day in and day out is not only boring, it may not be the best approach to building or shaping muscle. You don’t need to scrap everything you’ve been doing and start over. Try adding a few new exercises to your routine or take a new class or two. If you’re bored with your cardio workout, switch it up with something different such as swimming, hiking or rock climbing.
Feed your mind
When you’re stuck in a fitness rut, pick up a magazine or book on a fitness topic that interests you. You’ll also find endless ideas, how-tos and sources of inspiration online. Make it a point to spend a little time every day watching short exercise technique videos, reading blogs or feature stories on fitness. You’ll find a wealth of information right here on the Vitacost blog! Here you can browse healthy recipes, fitness advice, videos and more””plus you’ll learn a lot about great products Vitacost carries and can often click to order them right from the post you’re reading.
Switch up your snacks
Food shouldn’t be considered a reward, but having snacks on hand that you actually look forward to eating is fun. Pick out a new type of protein powder and find recipes to use it creatively. Sick of the same-old energy bars? Try a new brand and flavor, or make your own. Try something you’ve never eaten before, like Snappea Crisps, Go Raw Simple Flax Snax or almond butter. With so many organic, nutritious snack options available””healthy doesn’t have to be boring!
Remember, a day or two off your normal schedule isn’t cause to abandon all your efforts. Work toward developing a healthy relationship with exercise and eating. And don’t be hard on yourself””if you get in a slump, just pick back up and start again tomorrow.
NPC National Figure competitor Melissa Transou, a fitness expert, wife and mother, blogs about the unique sports and nutrition needs of women and female athletes exclusively for Vitacost.com. Learn more about Melissa in this recent RXMuscle.com spotlight article, connect with her on Facebook or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.