We’ve all been there. You finally get into a good workout routine, only for life to happen and knock you out of the normal day-to-day for longer than you care to admit. So now that you feel ready to tackle your fitness goals again, you may be asking yourself how to start working out again?
Don’t you worry my friend. We’ve got some great tips on how to start working out and how you can be more consistent in the future. Working towards a new goal is exciting and we want you to know we believe you can do this!
7 Tips on how to start working out again
1. Don't try to do it all
Patience my friend. If you can only focus on one thing, let it be patience.
You can’t build a brand new, all you ever dreamed of kind of body without taking the time to do so. Don’t try to start out on day 1 pushing yourself to the limits and doing all the things, in an attempt to speed up the process. It takes time but that time will allow you to produce some pretty cool results if you stay focused.
So if you’re starting from (basically) the beginning, take it slow. Allow your body to adjust. It’s got to figure this thing out too.
2. Plan & prep
If you don’t schedule it, it won’t happen. That’s my rule at least.
It’s important to look at your day and decide when you have time to commit to working out. Work from home? Block out your lunch break on your calendar (so no one can book a meeting) and go take a walk. Or if the early mornings look like your only option, planning & prepping the night before will be your best friend. We’ve even got a post where we walk you through exactly how to get up for a morning workout.
When it comes to prep, focus on prepping yourself mentally AND physically. Change is hard. Figuring out how to start working out again is hard. But it doesn’t mean you can’t do it. Prep the night before to set you up for the best possible success the next day.
3. Think about it differently
When it comes to what counts as exercise, consider any and all movement a step in the right direction.
You don’t need to go to the gym for a minimum of an hour for it to “count”. Some of your daily chores can get you off of the couch and burning calories. Consider the idea of just getting up and getting active more often the ultimate goal.
If you’re not ready to face the gym and all of its new machines and movements don’t go. Instead, use what you have around you to get you moving. Maybe try running up and down your stairs instead of walking. Do some pushups or sit ups between commercials (or at the end of each episode of the show you’re streaming). Make silly house rules like every time you eat a piece of candy, you’ve got to do 5 burpees before you eat it.
Make it fun, make it different, it’ll all add up at the end of the day.
4. Accountability helps
Sometimes we commit to things in our head. But the second we admit to doing something out loud, especially to a friend or family member, the odds of actually doing it tend to increase.
Find you a friend and tell them you’re going to start working out again. Even if they don’t want to join, have them check in on you weekly to see how it’s going. Or find a whole group of co-workers and get everyone onboard for a 30 day walking challenge. Up the stakes of the challenge by agreeing to pitch in and by the winner lunch for a week. A community is such a helpful way to keep you on track.
5. Try a positive mindset
Negative self talk is real.
Whether you are aware of it or not, there are probably some lies you say to yourself at times. When it comes to how to start working out again, don’t let self doubt and negativity plague your thoughts. Focus on the fact that you ARE starting again. Plain and simple. Don’t dwell on the past with “should’ve, would’ve, could’ve” talk. Put the true power of positivity into play and tell yourself you are capable and strong. It’s truly fascinating what a positive mindset can do for you.
Try switching your mental talk to a positive channel. Start complimenting yourself on the improvements you’re making (whether big or small) and be your own biggest fan by telling yourself you’re doing a good job.
6. Work on the habit
Imagine a day where you throw on your workout clothes and head out the door for your lunch break exercise, with barely a thought.
Habit forming is what takes you from performing a task some of the time to performing a task the majority of the time. Things like working out can become second nature but it takes time. Consider reading a book all about habit forming like Atomic Habits by James Cleary. Or if you’re feeling up for a real challenge, consider signing up for our accountability app that uses incentive based methods to form habits.
At the end of the day, if you’re wondering how to start working out again, you’ve simply just got to start. Have yourself start going through the motions and before long, you’ll be running around and doing burpees with the best of them. Let us know how you jump back into exercising after a period of time away in the comments!